May 14, 2013 — by: Karl Johnson
Categories: Competition, Mac Pro, News, Predictions, Products, Review


Adobe has been changing the way their customers can buy their software lately. During the past decade, users of Adobe's software were stretching out their upgrade cycles, choosing to forego every single update, as the costs didn't justify, and the new features were not that compelling. Many were upgrading only when a major OS or hardware change required them to do so. When Creative Suite 6 came out, Adobe told its customers that they would only be able to upgrade from one version back instead of 3 or 4. This meant users could not upgrade every other version, doubling the cost for many.

This month, Adobe announced the end of the Creative Suite with a new version of Creative Cloud. Adobe will keep selling CS6, but it will no longer add new features. The Creative Cloud is a subscription service where the users rent the software. The software and files are stored on the computer, but if the user decides not to pay, the software will not run. The software checks every month or up to 99 days (annual contract) to see if the users are still subscribing. For creative professionals who use multiple Adobe applications all day long, this is may not effect them much, as they may actually be spending less over time. For the rest of Adobe's users, Creative Cloud costs more, much more.

The following graph looks at the cost comparison of Photoshop over a 15 year period. The blue line is the Creative Cloud service cost. Users who does not have Photoshop, but purchase every upgrade the traditional way, which was $200 every 18 months, is the green line. The yellow line is a user who has Photoshop CS6 and upgrades every time (the old way). A user who has Photoshop CS6 and upgrades every other time is the red line.


As the graph shows, current Photoshop users start paying more within the first year. Photoshop CC is $240 a year, where Photoshop CS was $200 every 18 months. For users who don’t have Photoshop, Creative Cloud becomes more expensive after six years, and after those six years the software is still not owned by the user and goes away if the user does not pay.

Adobe Creative Suite has been the dominant computer graphics software package for over a decade. Adobe is now taking this dominance and using it to glean more money from its users. Adobe will continue to jack up prices without a real competitor, because the user base simply has little or no choice for a cohesive graphics suite of software. Once they lock users into a subscription service, they can jack it up and force their customers to pay more. Yet Adobe opened the door for the competition with the Creative Cloud, as many users are upset. Hopefully, someone will put some serious investment into some competitive solutions that rival the Adobe suite. Users are now certainly looking for it.

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  1. Joe W ~ May. 14, 2013 @ 2:59 pm

    But what about the poor user that does not upgrade all the time. You get killed by the cloud version. Many people can use a program for years and years with any need to change. #
  2. Kevin ~ May. 14, 2013 @ 3:17 pm

    RE: It's called Pixelmator. 2.2 is nice, and it's a ridiculous $14.99 in the app store! Go get some. #
  3. Boldie ~ May. 15, 2013 @ 3:52 am

    This is only Photoshop. CC gives you the whole range of apps. Now compare that please. #
  4. Peter B ~ May. 18, 2013 @ 12:01 am

    I think CC is not good. It is just a way to get more money out of people. I have CS3 programs, so i decided to upgrade to CS4, CS5 or CS6. And then the sad truth came to me... THERE WAS NO CS PROGRAMS! EVERYTHING was replaced with ''Creative'' Cloud. #
  5. Mike ~ Jun. 15, 2013 @ 9:49 am

    I ONLY use and need Photoshop..nothing else. CC has no value for many like myself, I suspect the GOOGLE folks will soon surprise us... #
  6. screw greedy adobe ~ Oct. 21, 2014 @ 3:37 pm

    The greedy bustards in adobe are working hard to push people to visit pirate sites and download a pirated version, I suspect they will get their wish.. p.s. a friend of mine just bought an official licenced version of Photoshop cs 14 #
  7. screw greedy adobe ~ Oct. 21, 2014 @ 3:47 pm

    The bustards at adobe have an insatiable desire to push people to pirate their software and i suspect they will soon be getting their wish. P.s. a buddy of mine was visiting Moscow and bought an official and licenced CS 14 (the latest one) for about 30$ thats righ 30 bucks one time payment and u own it forever, nice huh considering adobe is subsidized to a large degree by the us taxpayers it seems to me Americans should get it cheaper than overseas consumers but instead we get an exponentially worse deal wtf? I would guess in india africa china the price might be even less than russia.. #
  8. SImon ~ Dec. 10, 2014 @ 3:23 pm

    To anyone thinking they only need Photoshop to process their images. You simply don't understand how Lightroom is. I speak from personal experience, I resisted, I didn't understand and now I do. Trust me Lightroom will save you hours and hours, let you do more, and organize better than you do now. Trust me on this! The stand alone versions are (and will be) still available. But $10 a month for Lightroom and Photoshop is a no brainer. Amazing deal! #

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