Adobe Photoshop CC: Subscription Only, Shake Reduction, Better Raw

At its Adobe MAX conference in Los Angeles today, Adobe announced Photoshop CC, the next version of its flagship photo editing software. Unlike version that came before it, Photoshop CC will only be offered through Adobe’s Creative Cloud subscription plan.

This marks a huge shift in the direction of the company. Adobe says it plans to focus all of its software development efforts on its Creative Cloud product from here on out. The Creative Suite (CS) is being rebranded to Creative Cloud (CC) as part of this shift.

In other words, the Creative Suite line is coming to an end, and Creative Suite 6 will be the last in the series. Gone are the days in which you purchase a boxed copy of Adobe software.

Photoshop CC will have a number of upgrades over Photoshop CS6. Major ones are a new image deblurring/sharpening feature, and new Camera Raw capabilities. The new program merges features that were previously found in Photoshop standard and Photoshop Extended.

Photoshop's new Shake Reduction panel

Photoshop’s new Shake Reduction panel

That magical camera shake blur reduction tool that has been dropping jaws since 2011 will be appearing in the new program. It uses fancy algorithms to reduce the blur caused by camera shake:

There’s also a new Smart Sharpen tool that minimizes noise and halos quite giving photos much more sharpness:


Adobe Camera Raw 8 has three new capabilities for editing RAW files: an Advanced Healing brush that “heals” and “patches” images with a brush stroke, a new Radial Gradient for drawing attention to the focus of a photo without applying a standard vignette, and an Upright tool that straightens horizons and applies perspective corrections.

Camera Raw edits can also be applied to layers within Photoshop CC itself, without having to open up the Adobe Camera Raw window.


Adobe Photoshop CC will be available to Creative Cloud customers starting in June 2013. You’ll need to subscribe to Creative Cloud for $50 per month to use all of the new CC programs, or subscribe to Photoshop CC itself for $20 per month.

  • Swade

    I don’t understand why they would take away being able to own your own copy of software. So much more expensive in the long run it’s unbelievable. I might have to pass on any upgrade if it will continue to be subscription.

  • Atlanta Owner

    So right now I can upgrade yearly for $199 and own the product. Now, I’ll have to pay $240 a year to “lease” it . Yet, they are saving $$$ by not having to make DVDs and packaging for physical software any longer. They save tons of money, yet charge me more to use the product (??). I believe I’ll be dumbing-down to Elements with a few third party filters from now on, thanks.

  • Rob Elliott

    ya I did some math the other day. versus a bi annual upgrade at $199USD the subscription works out to be about $240 annually and gives you 20GB of cloud storage. Based on this plan you are paying $140 a year for 20GB of Storage.

    Dropbox offers 100GB of storage for $120 a year. (M2M)

    They need to lower the cost of the Single Product only subscription or make Adobe CC for Photographers, and provide LR & PS plus 75/100GB of storage for the $20 a month. That at least gives value.

    I also subscribe already to CC as I didn’t own Photoshop previously, so I wouldn’t have spent more on the sub until mid 2018.

  • eraserhead12

    my university provided me a free copy of CS6.. I’m curious how this new system will affect those who get discounted rates

  • Raymond Larose

    Exactly my thoughts. And when you’re on my cycle (every other year) I’ll cost me $480 to not own it. Bad idea. Looks like I am on CS6 for a while.

  • Anthony Harden

    The Creative Cloud is the only reason I have access to the programs that I use every day. I’m not married to the concept of having physical media anymore. It’s dead and good on Adobe for finally pulling the plug. Oh, and you were always ‘leasing’ the software regardless of whether or not you held a disc in your hand. Just saying.

  • Samuel

    Well, I guess I’m stuck with CS6 until they realise this is a terrible terrible idea.

  • Sarah Bugeja Kissaun

    That sounds even more unaffordable than ever before…

  • Andrew Iverson

    Do you need to have access to the internet to use the software? Say i’m travelling but need to use it, can i still do that? I could with the purchased version,

  • Stephen Shoihet

    Well if they decide to go that way I guess I’ll be sticking to LR + CS6 for a while…

  • Sam

    Photoshop CS6 Extended costs $800+ to purchase. And then they’ll release CS7 (or CC I guess it is now) and that would typically be another $800 or more. Now you can pay $240 a year to have the most up to date version. Pay that for 3 years and its still less than buying CS6 extended. Check your math.

  • mlieberman85

    If you are offline for 30 days then you will have issues, but beyond that you will have full access during those 30 days.

  • Stephen Shoihet

    Yes, and as soon as you stop paying, you have nothing. I have CS and LR that I continue to “own” and can continue to use until they no longer meet my requirements.

  • Swade

    Unless you can get the student version and pay much less. These products aren’t made to be upgraded at every version. Do you really need to pay $800 for each version (I don’t know why you would when an upgrade is much less money). As for me, I purchased Photoshop CS6 ro $250, why then would I upgrade to a lease of the product for that same amount of money EVERY year?

  • RDT

    Do you run the software on your PC? Or do you have to run it off their server over the internet? If your ISP connection drops, can you still use this software?

  • fast eddie

    No one OWNS Adobe software, you are only purchasing a LICENSE to use it. It has always been like this.

    Creative Cloud makes sense. I have a Creative Cloud Team account for a 2 user/2 computer per user license for every product Adobe offers. Every time there is an update or upgrade available to the software, I get it with no increase in the annual subscription rate.

  • Mark Moore

    Me too.

    What I do not like about the subscription model is that it makes you a hostage to Adobe. Once you build up a substantial collection of data that can only be opened in the CC programs, you will likely have no choice but to go on paying Adobe whatever they ask.

  • Jeff

    It is installed on your computer. You have to validate it every 30 days. Still, a horrible concept.

  • Linda Castellani

    What will happen to all the plugins I bought?

  • Graham C W Mattock

    It sucks for people who only need one or two products, they should certainly introduce a tier system – I use 6+ (I do photo and video) and for me it’s a bargain price!

  • Michael Spotts

    Will there be student pricing for the subscription model?

  • Anthony Harden

    You lease them. Regardless. CC is a better option long term. Instant updates to new features. Don’t have to upgrade on a cycle. Far less upfront cost. For my needs, I use Premiere Pro, After Effects, Photoshop, and Audition on a daily basis for work. I’m self employed. Over a three year period I will pay roughly $600/yr on the CC system vs. $1899 for a single Production Premium license. So, for a three year stint, yes, it makes perfect sense to go with the Creative Cloud considering, as mentioned, I receive all updates automatically without having to upgrade again, like a legacy disc holder would. It just makes sense to go CC. Sorry.

    Edit: typo

  • Dave

    I have been on CC since it was offered. If you use three or more of their main programs, which I do, it is worth it. Those that only use one program are the ones that will be adversely affected.

  • Dave

    CC being Creative Cloud, not the new version of Photoshop.

  • Jin Zhaoli

    Powerful than ever and expensive than ever!!!

  • Trey Mortensen

    This thing completely screws students or budget photographers. I got PS6 for $50 and LR4 for $70. I can’t afford even to do a year on CC. I will now be stuck with the old software or just screw adobe and find other programs to do what I need to do.

  • Robert Trboli Photography

    I’m strictly a PS6 and Lightroom user. I updated to PS primarily to keep colors synced with Lightroom. More and more my workflow has been Lightroom to On One Software. I think Adobe’s cloud actions will finally kill my usage of photoshop. If lightroom becomes subscription only I’ll certainly go to an Aperature/On One workflow. As far as Adobe having the arrogance to think of themselves as the dominant solution all I have to say is —- Lotus, Word Perfect!

  • PeterA

    There is student/teacher pricing at $19.99/month.

  • NeilV

    It’s a professional tool. If you can’t afford it then you can’t afford it, find something in your price range. If you are a working pro, it’s just the cost of doing ‘biz…

  • Mac Washburn

    My hobby just got too expensive ….. goodbye Photoshop…

  • TSY87

    CC gets you 2 licenses though… I like it, it allows me to run legit software on my Mac and PC.

  • vinegar_joe

    I’ve used Photoshop since v2.5…………CS6 will be the last.

  • Rob Elliott

    the problem is simple… by 2018 you’ll be paying more… and significantly more every year.. and the licence is a long term on… rather then a 30 day one.

    Adobe is saying pay us more… for a 30 day licence.

  • Binary_Bob

    We have 14 seats at $50 a year that’s $8,400 per year just to stay in business. Time to find something else.

  • Binary_Bob

    Good luck getting it back from your customers.

  • Antonio Carrasco

    I hope Adobe fails big time. They are becoming a customer-antagonistic company. Make no mistake, Adobe Creative Cloud is 100% about DRM and NOT about cloud storage or anything like that.


  • Bob

    I’m not sure I’m following what you mean but just because you subscribe doesn’t require you to store anything in Adobe’s cloud. The cloud subscription works exactly as the physical software. You download it to your computer, you can choose whatever fileformat you want when saving and save any project to your computer. Exactly the same as previous (physical) software. I’ve had it for a year and never once touched their cloud except for updates and downloads.

  • Antonio Carrasco

    Um, no, see Photoshop is THE industry standard and basically has a monopoly at this point. Yeah, I know there are some other choices but they are mostly useless.

    Plus Adobe has a history of abusive pricing tactics. See the Australia fiasco for proof.

  • A_Lwin

    I think Mark is talking about saving files which are formatted to be opened only with Adobe products, especially files for tools such as Premiere, After Effects, InDesign, etc.

  • TheBurnerIdentity

    Well that means Photoshop CS6 was the last Adobe
    product I’ll ever buy. This is just so incredibly hostile to serious
    hobbyists and students.

    I used to be able to purchase a student license and use that version
    for a few years. There’s no way to even approach that cost per month
    under the new plans, and I simply cannot justify these prices.

    Fingers crossed some startup steps up to the plate with something
    decent for the PC at a price I can afford (and not on a subscription

    If not, I guess it’s Canon Digital Picture Professional + the GIMP from now on.
    Here’s to hoping the accountants screwed this one up and Adobe soon realizes it’s made a terrible mistake.

  • Scott Burchard

    I love Photoshop but I am afraid if they move to a cloud only model I will probably move to Aperture.

  • Bill McKenzie

    Yeah and it used to retail for $249 prior to Jan 31 when Adobe gave dealers and distribution 24 hours notice of a price increase to $349 retail. So now you pay the purchase price amount every year and you don’t own it. Stop paying and it stops working. This sux.

  • 4234324324

    it will be cracked….. im a customer since cs2… but im not buying into the cloud.

  • 4234324324

    btw: you americans are lucky.. look what we in europe have to pay!!!

  • 232323

    you are retarded if you believe that.
    adobe owns you .. but your to stupid to see that.

  • NeilV

    LOL! Last week you make some inflammatory/sexist comment about women. Now you are all…”death to” bla bla bla…

    Grow up.

  • NeilV

    I have been using Photoshop since 1994 and will continue to use it into the future. A small price to pay for something that just works… It’s been a better investment than some of my hardware!

  • NeilV

    If you business, that has 14 licenses can’t afford a capital outlay of $8400 a year, you should just give up.

  • Umpfff2

    i hope COREL will make a return.
    a good alternative to photoshop has a REAL chance now!!!

  • NeilV


    Are you 12? Welcome to the real world kid.