Adobe caused quite an outcry from the photography community yesterday after announcing that its future software offerings will only be available through subscription plans to its Creative Cloud service. The main gripe was that the $50/month cost for all the programs in the CC suite–or $20/month for just Photoshop–didn’t make financial sense for independent photographers and smaller photo studios.
Well, the sound of grumbling has reached decision makers over in the San Jose-based company. In a post published on the Photoshop.com blog yesterday, the company revealed that it’s thinking about introducing special Creative Cloud packages geared specifically at photographers.
In the article, the company’s Chief Consumer Advocate for Digital Imaging products, Jeffrey Tranberry, offered answers to various questions that were being thrown around by photographers on the Internet.
Tranberry states that although a single-app subscription to Photoshop CC will cost $20/month at its regular price, photographers who currently own any version of Photoshop CS3 and above will be able to subscribe to Photoshop CC for a year at a price of $10/month (with an $120 annual commitment).
For photographers who use both Photoshop and Lightroom in their workflows, it gets a bit more messy and a lot less friendly. Tranberry says you best bet is to do the $10/month subscription to Photoshop CC and then purchase the standalone “perpetual software license” version of Lightroom (AKA the “box” version, which isn’t going away).
However, Tranberry did offer a slight silver lining, saying that Adobe is thinking about offerings designed for photographers:
We’ve heard there’s a lot of interest in a photographer’s bundle or photography cloud solution and we’re actively exploring offerings we can potentially create for you. We welcome your feedback around what you would like to see that fits your workflow needs.
What custom offerings would be satisfactory for photographers? In a comment left on our post yesterday, photographer Rob Elliott suggests one possible solution:
I did some math the other day. Versus a biannual upgrade at $199 USD, 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 [month to month].
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.
The main issue at the moment is value. While the existing Creative Cloud plans may be a great value to businesses and individuals who constantly need the latest versions of many Adobe programs, it’s not so great for people who would be perfectly happy with just Photoshop and Lightroom. Adobe would be able to satisfy that market segment by tailoring a package specifically for those customers’ needs.
If you have specific questions regarding what Adobe’s transition to the cloud will mean for you, Tranberry is currently answering questions in the comments section of his blog post.