Adobe today announced that the next evolution of their apps will be exclusive to the new Creative Cloud. Instead of an update to Creative Suite 6 to Creative Suite 7, the new versions of Adobe apps will be rebranded to CC, like Photoshop CC, and only available to Creative Cloud subscribers.
The current version of Creative Suite 6 with a perpetual license will still be available (Adobe says there are no current plans to end sales of CS6), but there will be no further updates to the suite, except when needed to keep up to date with operating system updates. Adobe says that there is "excellence in focus" and that focusing development on Creative Cloud will help speed innovation and "broaden the type of innovation the company can offer the creative community."
Creative Cloud is Adobe's subscription-based software licensing service, which gives you access to Adobe software as well as cloud storage and syncing services, plus access to new features and products as soon as they're released. Instead of paying a flat fee upfront for software, users pay monthly for access to full versions of Adobe's popular desktop applications and install them as they wish. Previous versions of the software, starting from CS6, will also be available for installation.
Adobe says that installed CC apps will ping Adobe's servers only once a month to check payment. If payment has not been received, a warning message will flash upon launching a CC app and Adobe will extend a grace period of 7 days. If a user has no internet access at the time, he can call Adobe customer service for help.
Different plans are available; for example the education plan offers a substantial 60% discount, and users can also sign up for a single app subscription. Adobe is also offering a discount to current Creative Suite users (from CS3 to later).
New versions of Adobe's apps were also announced today; including Photoshop CC, InDesign CC, Illustrator CC, Dreamweaver CC and Premiere Pro CC. With the Creative Cloud, Adobe is doing away with the idea of massive upgrades every 12 to 18 months with a new suite, instead new features will be plugged into the existing apps as and when they're released, and will be freely available to CC subscribers.
The new versions of Adobe's apps also integrate more deeply with the Creative Cloud, as well as Behance, the portfolio social network Adobe bought late last year. Users can store, sync and share files in the cloud with collaborators, as well as save personalised workspaces which can be synced across multiple devices. The Creative Cloud gets its own dedicated desktop app, which lets you do things like install Adobe apps, upload files, download fonts and see a stream of updates from your Behance network.
The new CC apps also plug into the Creative Cloud in interesting ways. For example, users can take a photo using the upcoming Kuler iOS app, which then extracts the photo's main colours as a colour swatch. This swatch can then be synced to your desktop apps, so you can open Illustrator CC and start using that swatch immediately.
Using the Creative Cloud, a designer can send a live preview of a website from Edge Inspect CC to multiple mobile devices and check how the design works on various screen sizes. Any change applied to the design on the desktop will be automatically updated on those devices. Adobe's integration with Behance also means that users can now upload to their portfolio directly from within Adobe's apps.
Another massive announcement is that Adobe - through Typekit, which they acquired in late 2011 - is now able to offer fonts from 175 professional font families for download for use on the desktop, at no additional charge for CC subscribers.
The new Adobe CC apps come with hundreds of new features. Here are the highlights:
The new Adobe Creative Cloud apps will be available in Singapore from June 18th. Adobe offers several pricing options for Creative Cloud subscriptions: new users can buy a subscription at S$66/month with a year long commitment (or $99 on a month by month basis), which gets you access to the full suite of software plus, all of Adobe's Edge services and 20GB of cloud storage.
Users of CS versions 3 to 5.5 can get their first year of service at a reduced rate of S$39 a month for the first year, while current CS6 users can subscribe for S$26 a month for the first year.
For users who want access to a single application, all CS apps are available for S$26/month.
Like the boxed versions, all Creative Cloud subscriptions give you a license to use the software on up to two different computers.
Creative Cloud plans for teams, enterprise and educational institutions and government are also available.