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The 10 Most Frequent Myths About Adobe’s Creative Cloud (CC)

What's in the Adobe Creative Cloud?

With nearly 3.5 million customers having already signed up in the 2½ years since it launched, Adobe’s Creative Cloud (CC) product line has been a success exceeding even the company’s own expecta­tions.  Still, there are a lot of misconceptions out there that we see from time to time, or that some folks seem to believe… (do you?)  Here below we dispel and debunk the top 10 most common myths we’ve heard – and hopefully even if you already know the scoop or use Creative Cloud you’ll pick something up… read on!

Myth #1: “‘Creative Cloud’ sounds like cloud storage only – which is just a way to store your files, and I already have Dropbox which is free.”

Some say the name is misleading – but the Creative Cloud is actually a comprehensive collection of creative tools and services including the new CC 2014 release of desktop products, Acrobat XI Pro, Adobe Muse, Lightroom 5, Digital Publishing Suite, Behance ProSite, Adobe Edge, and more – the full working versions…  You do also get 2-20 gigabytes of online storage space for syncing and sharing your files, but that is only one piece of of the big picture.

Myth #2: “I don’t want to be constantly connected to the Internet to start and run my creative apps; what happens when I’m on a plane?”

You do not have to be continually connected to the Internet.  After the CC applications are installed and running on your desktop, online access is only required once every 4 months for revalida­tion of your annual membership. Plus there are solutions in place if you’ll be offline for an extended period – like traveling for six months without web access… just contact Customer Service.

Debunking the Myths About Adobe Creative Cloud

Myth #3: “The applications can’t be very powerful if they are running in a browser – trying to run Photoshop over the web is going to be really slow.”

None of the the tools mentioned above are hosted or web-based versions… These are the genuine desktop products that you download and install right on your computers, and work just like usual – these are not web applications, it’s not “software as a service” (SaaS), and your CC programs like Photoshop will run as normal.

[ Related: Photoshop Will Always Run on the Desktop ]

Myth #4: “The subscription model sounds like it might be more expensive than perpetual licensing, so it may not be worth it to me.”

When you add up the price tags of all the individual products you can install and use in the Creative Cloud, the total value is over US$10,000.  The Master Suite by itself historically sells for $2,600, and that’s just part of what you get with a newer CC 2014 release… All ongoing updates and upgrades are included, as well as free professional training.  You can access these leading products for $9-$49 a month, one year at a time, and install & run them on up to two of your computers (including both PC and Mac) – compare the two options in detail here.

Myth #5: “So I can have the entire latest Master Collection and more for $1-2/day, and do anything with it – it must be too good to be true, no?”

There’s no catch. It works exactly as described, you can imagine and create without bound­aries using all of the world’s best tools for photo, image, video, audio, graphics, illustration, web, print, mobile, publishing, gaming, animation, development and design – and so far the overall user reviews and ratings are close to 5 stars out of five.

Myth #6: “Well, then Adobe is going to entice everyone to the Cloud – and once we are all hooked, they are going to jack up the prices.”

Adobe has offered subscription-based CS products for seven years now, and over that time their prices have only fallen, never risen… You’ve got elasticity of the demand curve – the lower the monthly rate, the more people sign up, the greater the cost is spread out, and repeat.  It’s a virtuous cycle in our view – and if anything, no guarantees but we think prices will continue to drop as the Cloud grows. Raising to unaffordable rates would be counterproductive. But if you’re still worried about it, then you can always choose to lock in your pricing in advance.

Special: Legally download dozens of free Adobe books – or win our new CC 2014 Giveaway!

Myth #7: “If my friend or client or colleague isn’t a Creative Cloud member, I can’t share my files with them.” …or… “But I don’t want to share all my work publicly.”

If you’re concerned about sharing files with people using older versions of the CS tools, check out our CC File Compatibility Guide. And for any files you choose to store online in Adobe’s Cloud, you can easily set different levels of sharing – from keeping them completely private to sharing them publicly with anyone at all. Viewers will be able to do many things like see thumbnails and larger previews, change layer states of PSD files, step through Illustrator artboards and InDesign and PDF pages, and see file metadata from within their browser [watch video demo here].  But you can also keep your files entirely offline on your local disk as normal, because using the online storage in the Cloud is completely optional.

Myth #8: “The Creative Cloud isn’t free (is it?), so if I leave then I will lose all my files.”

No worries – there is a totally free (for life) level of Creative Cloud membership which provides ten terrific benefits including free products & services, that anyone can sign up for… If you cancel a paid membership then you’ll have a 90-day grace period bring any cloud storage down to the size of 2GB free (or can buy additional storage separately if you like).  You prob­ably also saved your files locally on your computer as well, before sharing online.

Myth #9: “Even if I only use one or two applications, I have no choice but to buy the complete Creative Cloud membership, right?”

Worldwide Offer: Get New Adobe Photoshop CC 2014 plus Lightroom 5 and Mobile for $9.99 a Month (Regular Ongoing Price)

No, this is false. Just like it was with the previous suites and point products, you still have the option to buy either the discounted bundle of everything or just a single program if you prefer. If you only want to use an individual tool or two, then you can sign up for a Single-App Membership at a lower price ($9-19). For example, Adobe is now offering a special Photography Plan worldwide that gives both Photoshop CC + Lightroom 5 (the full desktop releases) and more for $9.99 a month.

Myth #10: “With the Cloud you can’t ever stay on or run previous versions if you want to, you are always forced to update to the latest release, right? I might not always be ready to do that, plus some plug-ins might not yet work with the newer version.”

No, in fact it’s optional – and your call. Creative Cloud makes updates avail­able for those who want to install them, but the applica­tion manager will not automati­cally update your system without your go-ahead… You can continue using the versions you have already downloaded, and then choose if and when to install the new releases, whenever is convenient and best for you. On average for each CC tool, the pacing of available upgrades has been every 2-3 months. And IT administrators can use the new Creative Cloud Packager utility to fully control all aspects of deploy­ment on any group of computers.

Bonus Myth: “If for some reason Adobe decides to stop offering products in the Creative Cloud, then I’ll be stuck.”

In the event that Adobe decides to discontinue any products in the Creative Cloud, then they will make the most recent full and permanent version of the software available free of charge to active members on an as-is basis. But that seems unlikely to happen, because with the brisk adoption the offering has been receiving – almost 50,000 new customers each week – the future of Creative Cloud appears bright.

“In the event that Adobe decides to discontinue any of the products in Creative Cloud, we will make the most recent version of the product available for download free of charge to active Creative Cloud members for a period of no less than 90 days. Such downloads will not require a subscription and will be licensed on an as-is, no warranty basis …”

Do you have any questions, thoughts, or other myths you’ve heard about the Creative Cloud?  Check out our extensive Creative Cloud FAQ, or just post them below and we’ll get you answers fast!


See Also

New Adobe CC 2014 Direct Download Links: All Free Trials

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  1. David Dahlstrom

    ProDesignTools:

    Hi David, are you talking about file compatibility between different versions of Photoshop? Yes, that’s largely a myth as well.

    As for migrating files between different releases of Adobe Photoshop – the PSD format is very portable and there have already been many tests of this ability. One longtime customer wrote:

    So, there’s been a lot of “FUD” around this issue and fewer facts, but the reality is not so terrible.

    I’m very well aware of “file compatibility” with other products. Just because a file format is open doesn’t mean that other products deal well (or at all) with all the embedded features in that psd. For example, just the other day I attempted to open one of my control panel images in GIMP (which reads psd files). The file was opened successfully, but in the process 16-bit images were changed to 8-bit yielding unacceptable dithering, vector fonts were loaded as bitmaps, and none of my smart objects were preserved. In other words, there is no hope of using GIMP at this time as a practical replacement for Photoshop to edit those images. Now if I “dumbed down” my use of advanced Photoshop features so that everything I saved in my psd would load properly in GIMP, then why would I even use Photoshop when GIMP is free? So I continue to use CS5, which is perfectly fine because the license is permanent and I feel my images and my ability to edit them will never be put in jeopardy under the terms of its license.

    Now the only reason any user of a CS product would even go to CC would be to benefit from new features that it adds. But as soon as one starts using those features and saves a psd that relies on those features being present in order to edit (like I do), they need to understand that Adobe, for all practical purposes, now effectively owns a right-to-edit license on all of those images–which could number in the hundreds or thousands for a pro. If the owner of those images decides at anytime in the future to migrate to another product, they need to know that any rights they have to continue editing those images created in CC may very well be tied to them continuing to maintain a subscription indefinitely with Adobe in addition to any fees that they incur with the new product. Others refer to this as “holding the images hostage”. It’s an apt description.

    Now if all you do is use Photoshop to create images, output them as tiffs, and don’t consider the original layered image file to be an important archivable business or personal asset, then CC is fine. In fact, that is the perfect use case for a person who would be best off subscribing rather than purchasing a product such as PS (I’m not against subscriptions–they have their place). However, for folks who consider the layered original to be the digital equivalent to source code, it is vitally important to have the ability to archive both the original files and the product used to create them. In the programming world important software is archived along with the compiler used to generate the end product. If I wasn’t allowed to archive the compiler I wouldn’t use that compiler in a business scenario, since it might prevent me from being able to fix a critical or even dangerous bug in the future after that compiler became unavailable. In the imaging world its the exact same thing. If I can’t archive my images along with the product used to create and edit them, I won’t use the product. It would be bad practice and potentially irresponsible, especially in business and personal scenarios where long-term edibility is critical.

    • David, it’s not on Adobe if another piece of software does not read or manage the PSD format correctly… Adobe openly publishes the full format and any changes, and ensures Photoshop is compliant with it. That’s all they can do as far as file format is concerned.

      At the same time, you can’t hit them for changes to that. If there were never new features added then the industry-leading tool would never evolve, and would lose relevance and its place at the top.

      Another point. Is your CS5 better than CC? Or even CS6? How much productivity (= time = money) might you lose from not using the latest and fastest tools with the best feature sets?

      Finally, nothing in technology is forever. You may think you can run an old static copy for a lifetime, but did you know that Adobe will not be supporting any of the older CS tools on the next versions of Windows and Mac OS? Do you intend to use the same computer for the rest of your life? What happens if it irreparably crashes? Will you at some point upgrade your hardware or software in keeping with Moore’s Law?

      What’s strangest to us is that for someone who is a serious user and implies their work and livelihood are closely tied to Photoshop, is $10 a month too much to pay? That’s two cups of coffee for both PS+LR, which continues to fund new development of the products.

      Arguably, the ongoing support and latest versions are worth at least that, and that’s less than it used to cost under the old model for the vast majority of people (i.e., $848 upfront + $278 each upgrade).

  2. David Dahlstrom

    One quick follow-up. Prior to my last post I hadn’t read the entire content of the last reply regarding the backward (and forward) compatibility experiment performed by the “longtime customer”. I hear what this user is saying, but does this imply that Adobe is guaranteeing backward compatibility of all future CC versions with CS? In all seriousness, if it does, I will buy CC and will drop my complaints. If it is not guaranteed; however, then the risk is identical to what I described in my last post–since there is no way that I’m going to constantly check for backwards compatibility every time Adobe makes a change in the product. I’m also very dubious about Adobe maintaining this backward compatibility for long. In fact, I wouldn’t put it past them to consider backward compatibility a liability in their new subscription model and eventually break it. Perhaps that sounds like conspiracy speech, but its more of a trust issue. Quite simply, I truly find it hard to trust them anymore.

    • Well, that’s just more FUD. The company has done nothing to break your trust in that department. The fact of the matter is that Adobe has always worked hard to maintain interoperability across and between PS versions as much as they can, because they consider it a benefit to the ecosystem. The aforemen­tioned tests of opening a CC file in CS5 back this up.

      If they wanted force older versions of Photoshop to upgrade by breaking file compatibility, then they would have done so already at some time in the past (like when CS2, CS3, CS4, CS5, CS6 came out). But they didn’t, and they haven’t – over a 24-year history with 14 major releases of the product. There’s nothing new here, and those fears are not borne out by experience.

  3. I think I still resonate with David’s point. The main issue is not so much the backwards compatibility. I am a photographer who also designs graphics for a local church. As a side-business, it doesn’t make much money. The difficulty with this system is that

    1) If I use the upgraded software, then for whatever reason cancel my subscription, I can’t go back and edit archived psd files. It’s not that the cost of the subscription is that big of a deal, but it’s the idea that once you’re in, you’re locked in, or you lose the use of your projects. That doesn’t sit well with me.

    2) Most of the time, the upgraded feature-sets don’t equate to a very large difference in profit. In most cases, my skill as a photographer and basic editing tools are going to determine that. In some cases, new features come along that are appealing enough to warrant an upgrade, but under subscription, I no longer get to make that choice – I’m paying for it anyway.

    3) To me, it also theoretically removes some incentive to continue developing a quality product. Whereas before, if you wanted customers to pay for an upgrade, it had better be an upgrade worth paying for. Now, once you have customers using new CC features, they’re kind of locked in. Some of that pressure is gone. From what I’ve read, Adobe’s latest release appears to be pretty awesome, so this theoretical principal may not come into play as of this point, but the concept is still there, nonetheless, and it kind of bothers me.

    Bottom line, I just don’t like paying for something continuously when I don’t know for sure if it will equate to something I would have payed for anyway. If I work for a company that wants to budget for a subscription, that’s great, but individually, it’s a much harder decision to make.

    • Hi Mike, thanks for sharing your thoughts. Here are ours:

      1) As mentioned, if you stop subscribing to Photoshop CC, you can still go back and edit your PSD files with an older version of Photoshop. Or you can grab a simple month-by-month subscription to the latest version, or avail yourself of a new free 30-day trial of Photoshop (Adobe is likely to reset free trials at least once per year).

      2) Strongly disagree. There were a huge number of improvements between PS CS5 vs. CS6, and more still in Photoshop CC vs. CS6. Just talking about one new feature – Content-Aware Fill, which made its debut in CS5, got vastly improved (adding Patch/Move/Extend) in CS6, and works even better in CC – this feature is magic and dead-simple to use, and easily saves us dozens of hours every year. What’s your time worth?

      3) There’s simply no basis or justification for that thesis anywhere in Adobe’s history. That’s simply not the way the company works, it’s not in their culture. We know many engineers there and they are not foot-draggers or sand­baggers. Since CC was first released, there have already been dozens of included upgrades, and useful ones at that.

  4. David Dahlstrom

    In your first post above, I believe you’re actually making my point for me. I was responding to an earlier suggestion that psds being open somehow helped me. The fact is that it doesn’t help because no one ever implements everything in the spec. And of course you are correct that this is not Adobe’s fault (nor would any reasonable person ever imply that).

    With respect to using old software, this argument might work for light users, but for long term users with large archives it doesn’t. If I have hundreds or thousands of images in a proprietary format that I need to have occasional archival access to, I am NOT going to migrate them to the latest/greatest format every time a new version of the software used to create them comes out. I’m going to archive them and move along. If I need to access them at some point in the future, I will pull them out of storage along with the software used to create them and do what I need to do. And yes, it is perfectly normal for a business or anybody else to use old software on new platforms. In my job as a software developer, believe it or not, we still maintain DOS software for old systems (our products have about a 20 year lifecycle). To support these on modern systems we run them in a virtual machine. Here’s another example. I am also a musician (a trumpet player). Back in the ’90s I did a lot of transcription and transposed a large number of charts using software that is no longer sold or supported. Despite this, I still go back and occasionally edit and print these charts. How do I do this on my i7 Windows 8.1 64x machine? Well, I have the original floppies archived as virtual floppies and I have the software installed in a VM. And yes, I expect this will last forever and run on nearly any mainstream platform. Heck, it will even run on a phone (not that I do that). Now if I had rented this music software under an Adobe type subscription I would be totally out of luck. My right and ability to edit those archived files would have been revoked a long time ago.

    With regard to your last point about the price of CC, I am always surprised at how deeply the marketing folks just don’t get this. The price is not at issue here. I can easily afford a subscription. In fact, for a subscription Adobe’s price is excellent, perhaps even too cheap. As I said before, I’m not against subscriptions and Adobe’s prices are certainly fair enough. However, even if the price was free, I would not create any mission critical work in a product I can’t archive. Period. And that’s not just my policy, that is the policy of many responsible individuals. Now you say that Adobe hasn’t broken file compatibility in a long time, which is a fine retrospective observation, but if they cannot state this as a forward license guarantee, then all it is is an observation (Hmm. will my images with smart objects open in CS1? Gotta check that).

    • Well David, your use-case is pretty exceptional, we don’t often hear of people going to such lengths to avoid upgrading and continue to use older software! Most folks are not programmers who can (or want to) technically manage all that, and generally people are willing to feed the hand that supports them.

      But from what you write it sounds like you may not be aware of two important things. First, that newer versions of Photoshop will open your “archival” files from an older version, untouched – there’s no issue there. Second – and equally important if you want a backup – all Creative Cloud members also have complete access to a permanent archive of major versions, starting back from CS6.

      So, you created a PSD in CS6 and want to reopen it later with exactly the same version? It’s there for you to download and use if you need it; you can even run it side-by-side with CC. This goes for the $10 PS Photography Plan as well – all subscribers get full use of both Photoshop CC and CS6, plus Lightroom 5 and LR4. And once a year going forward, we’ll probably see a new milestone release added to this maintained version archive.

      Bottom line, if you admit you can easily afford CC and believe the price and value are excellent, but don’t want to subscribe anyway for personal reasons – then good luck to you, there’s nothing more we can say… With the near-5-star ratings that Creative Cloud has been getting, and the rapid adoption from customers, Adobe has been clear that they are not going back to the old perpetual versions with 18-month release cycles.

  5. Sarah

    Thank you for the helpful answers. What will the new milestone releases be called each year, do you know yet? Will they still be “CC” or will it be “CC[1]”, “CC2″, CC3″, etc.?

    • Hey there Sarah, that’s a good question. We don’t know for sure yet, but don’t think it will be CC2, CC3, CC4, like it was with Creative Suite…

      Adobe says there will always be the single name of “CC,” and not a second CC – but still we’d need something to distinguish the timeframe for major versions. So that means it’s more likely to be “CC” plus a year denomination, like “CC 2014.” Each individual tool would also retain its own specific release number, relative to its history.

      But of course, one of the benefits of Creative Cloud is an ongoing stream of included upgrades whenever they’re ready, and not having to wait for some big annual release date for everything.

  6. David Dahlstrom

    Of course CC will open my archival files from an older version! I would always expect that. Its called backward compatibility and I’m quite sure that even files I created way back in pre-CS Photoshop editions will open just fine in CC. My issue is what happens if I subscribe to CC, create lots of proprietary files and then cancel my subscription sometime in the future? If I’m lucky I might be able to still edit them in an older perpetually licensed product, but that requires *forward* compatibility, which is another animal altogether and hardly guaranteed, especially over the long term. (By the way, I am honored to be called “exceptional” in my use of legacy technologies in archival applications. I had been convinced that VM technology was commonplace nowadays, but perhaps that is untrue or I have misunderstood its application)

    I had to kind of laugh at this program by Adobe that grants CC folks the ability to use CS6. Why in the world would anyone “officially” need CS6 if they had CC? No really, think about. It can’t possibly be for the reason you state–i.e. for people who want to open a psd in the exact same version they created it in. That’s silly. I have always only had one version of PS installed at a time because it was always completely backward compatible with images created in older versions. So what use case could possibly really justify needing both CC and CS6? The only possible reasons I can think of are that either (a) there are known potential forward or backward compatibility issues coming down the pike or (b) there really is an officially recognized use case for people needing a perpetually licensed product and Adobe is backpedaling with this temporary patch of a deal.

    Here’s another example to consider: Lets suppose Adobe’s new subscription went into effect with the original CS1 product and lets suppose I was a new customer who never owned a previous version of PS. I then go ahead and buy a subscription to it to do professional work. Then let’s say that an automatic update came in the following year that added a new smart object layer feature and I started using it enthusiastically to create hundreds of heavily layered images for a wide variety of clients who expect me to keep the images archived and able to create modifications of them from time to time. Now suppose that five years later Adobe’s market domination begins to waver and a great new product from “Acme” comes out and based on rave reviews I decide that I want to migrate over to their product. Well here’s where Adobe’s license bites If I cancel my Adobe subscription my license and ability to edit my images is immediately revoked. Maybe the Acme product can read them if I’m lucky, but perhaps they have a new and better way of doing smart objects that isn’t compatible with Adobe. So now I’m stuck. If I had a perpetual license to the last edition of PS that I owned (one that supported smart objects), there would be no problem as I could continue to edit my legacy files independent of my migration to Acme. However, if my last edition of PS was cloud only, my editor vaporizes the moment my subscription goes away and I no longer have the means to honor my clients. So the only way I can both migrate to Acme and keep editing my old files is to both buy the Acme product *and* continue to subscribe to PS indefinitely–even if I hardly use it anymore. But of course, this is exactly what Adobe wants and I understand their rationale. If this wasn’t their rationale they would never have moved to this subscription-only model. The whole point of saying all this is just to make sure that others understand the dilemma they may potentially face in the future when renting a license rather than buying it.

    Look, I don’t disagree that Adobe CC is a 5-star product from a feature point-of-view. It is indeed best-in-class as an image editing program and that is not in any way lost on me. I also have absolutely no expectation that they will go back to a perpetual license since it is clear that they have stopped listening to those with my point-of-view. So at this point my message isn’t to Adobe at all but a message to let users–especially pros–know what they are both signing up for and simultaneously signing away.

    Well, that’s it for me. This will be my last post on this subject; you are welcome to have the last word :-)

    Dave

    • Sure Dave, you bet. In our view, the sooner you realize that you’re connected and committed to Adobe for your work and maintaining your vast PSD archive, the better. You’ve already put your eggs in that basket, and Adobe has moved to a new model of software delivery, as is their right in a free market for self-preservation and evolving with the times…

      As independent InDesign expert Bob Levine says, “Conveniently overlooked is the fact that loyalty is a two way street. Buying every third version of Creative Suite Design Standard does not make you a loyal customer; it makes you one of the reasons this move became necessary. Adobe has invested hundreds of millions of dollars developing tools that have allowed many of us to make a living or a life, but no company can continue making that type of investment without a return on it and a growing market.”

      You may not prefer it that way, but there’s nothing you or I can do. So as far as we see it, you have two options: you can stay where you are, stuck in 2010 with CS5 – or you can get on the train with the latest technology for a handful of sheckels a month, and move forward. Or maybe you’ll go for the middle choice which is buying CS6 from 2012, which has about a year left of support from Adobe. But it seems you’re spending an awful lot of time just thinking about it, as evidenced by the longest comment ever posted on our site in five years ;).

      Take care.

  7. Fernando Perez Vega

    Do you need to have Photoshop CS on your computer, before you can subscribe to this monthly contract?

    Hey Dave you have a valid point, real good one. But me, I am going to spend my money in this world. I can’t take it to heaven. I will have fun in this life with this wonderful software. Remember if you don’t spend it; someone else will.

    • Greetings Fernando, you sound like a great guy to be around. With any of Adobe’s Creative Cloud plans, including the PS+LR Photography Plan, you get the complete versions of these programs… In other words, you don’t need to have anything coming in; there are no previous product ownership requirements. These are not upgrades, they are the full releases – and anyone can sign up and download/install and run “the real deal” starting at $10 a month.

  8. weasel spleen

    “Conveniently overlooked is the fact that loyalty is a two way street.”

    Vendor lock-in is not the same thing as loyalty. Monopolies are incapable of understanding loyalty.

  9. ale d’erin

    I find it incredible underhanded of Adobe to introduce a product such as the cloud with all these amazing upgrades and only “CERTAIN” have access to this software entire regions are incapable of accessing the software, beyond the 30-day trial.

  10. You bring up a good point: if, at some point in the future, I decided not to renew my subscription to Photoshop CC, will I be able to open the documents I created in CC into my CS6 version?

  11. I guess I have another question… I use Adobe Products on my desktop and laptop. First, if I subscribe to Photoshop CC, can I download it to both my computers without additional charge?

    And, since it takes quite a bit of time to set (and remember) preferences I established in CS6, is there a way to copy those (like Workspace, color space, etc. – I think I previously set them across the programs through Bridge) to Photoshop CC running on both my computers?

  12. David Dahlstrom

    @ProDesignTools

    There is absolutely no guarantee of backward compatibility. Adobe certainly makes no guarantee like this anywhere. If Adobe introduces any new features whose attribute must be saved in the PSD it will not be backward compatible. Sorry. If you use Photoshop CC and decide to switch to some other product later, there is absolutely no guarantee that you will be able to open your PSDs without renewing your subscription. Anyone who says differently without pointing out where Adobe makes such a guarantee is providing misinformation.

    • Nope, no guarantees David, just like most things in life… And we didn’t say there were any – we only talked about how it works now and in the past. However the fact is that Photoshop has a strong record in this regard. And most people don’t realize that PSD is in fact an openly-published file format that any other program (including existing tools from other vendors) is free to use/open/save.

      For more details (including tests of moving files back and forth), see our previous comment on this subject.

  13. David Dahlstrom

    Actually there are guarantees. They are called business contracts and licenses. If you create an image in CS6, you have a permanent license to open in CS6. That’s guaranteed, and its simple.

    On the other hand, if you create an image in CC, you are only licensed to open your own files in CC until you cancel your subscription. That’s also a guarantee.

    So if in five years (and thousands of images from now) you decide to drop your subscription and migrate to a new non-Adobe product, you must keep in mind that your contract to open your files in CC will be immediately revoked. Of course, if what you’re implying is true, this will not be a problem since it will be easy to find other products that will read the CC “openly-published” PSD file format. Ok. Got it.

    Ah yes, CC licensing is a wonderful thing. Only ten bucks a month guarantees you a lifetime of subscription bliss.

    • No, there are no real guarantees there either. Can you guarantee that you will absolutely be running the same hardware and operating system software that support CS6 forever into the future? That you’ll have no machine failures, loss, theft, incompatibilities, performance issues, etc.? Are you still running the same computer and o/s that you were in 1999, for example? Adobe has stated they will not be updating or supporting CS6 going forward, on future releases of Windows or Mac OS.

      Nothing in technology is truly forever – if you want to use something then it needs to be maintained at some level, upgraded, supported, etc. – and that is usually not free. With CC, all ongoing upgrades and support are included. If you stop getting real use out of it, then just cancel your subscription. If you later want to open files in the latest release of the native tool, then Adobe gives everyone at least 1-2 free months of usage per year via new free trials. Outside of that, additional access is available for as long or short as you want or need (1 month – 12 months). And as mentioned earlier, besides Adobe, other third-party tools can open and read files like .PSD and .AI.

      Regardless, most customers seem to agree that $10 a month is a pretty good deal for the latest versions of both Photoshop + Lightroom + more, when these tools previously were out of reach for many with a collective price tag of $1,000+ upfront just to start. It’s going to cost something either way.

      The only thing that is guaranteed by staying with CS6 is being stuck at the 2012 level of features and performance, when there has already been a lot added since then that will save time, speed your work, and increase productivity… If you want to stay with CS6, fine, that’s your decision – but ultimately, what’s your time worth?

  14. @ProDesignTools

    I have no problem with the $9.99/mo. for the Photography package. It’s the $30 full suite package I am not up for paying. It was a hypothetical question I originally posed. I have always preferred to have my own, purchased copy rather than renting it. (I guess that’s why I have a closet full of DVD’s which I acquired rather than renting them!). You never know what’s around the corner with any company and I like to have a general idea of future happenings. I guess I feel like I’m more in control when something is mine.

    The CC font access is very appealing but what happens when I use one of the fonts I can access in CC when I bring a CC psd file into my CS copy of InDesign? It’s things like this that make me wonder…

    • Hello again Carey, there is no need to wonder about that – the answer is completely clear. You can use all of those CC Typekit fonts in all programs running on your computer… Desktop fonts synced from Typekit are available in all your desktop applications, including older versions of the Creative Suite (like your InDesign CS6) and even non-Adobe applications (like Microsoft Word).

      See here for more details on how it works.

  15. @ProDesignTools

    This makes me curious about something.

    So, we all subscribe to the Photography package for $10/mo. Great! Now, it’s next year and the folks at Adobe decide that $10/mo really isn’t enough so every year, they have a price increase. At some point, it may be that business is slow and suddenly the new price structure is not so reasonable. Then what? You’re basically stuck with a subscription-only product that really isn’t in the budget. So, what then?

  16. domi

    Hi,

    I’m a Free Creative Cloud member. When I look at the Adobe Creative Cloud Website I can find a lot of information about the products. But there is still something I can’t find.

    So here is my question for you: Can I subscribe for a Creative Cloud plan if I don’t have a credit card?

    Thanks.

  17. ear41

    My question is: I assume that the Creative Cloud has nothing to do with Photoshop Elements 13? Am I correct? Thanks,

    • Yes, that’s right. Photoshop/Premiere Elements are not included in the Creative Cloud; however their (very) big brothers Photoshop and Premiere Pro are…

      So you can definitely do all the photo/image and video/film editing that you can handle, and much more.

      You can see all the tools and services that are contained in the CC 2014 product line here:

      http://www.SeeCreativeCloud.com

      Complete Creative Cloud members have full access to download and use all of those.

  18. np

    I’m torn on CC. On the one hand I do think it’s a great value particularly if you’re a business or an individual that has a steady stream of clients/contracts. On the other hand, there’s the issue of lock-in which has already been discussed with files being unusable once you stop if you’re always using the latest are not consciously saving or exporting to older formats or feature sets (but avoiding new features basically defeats the purpose of a subscription).

    While this is concerns small businesses going out of business, or individuals and hobbyists being laid off or coming onto hard times, there is also one other area I haven’t seen discussed: availability in countries. If you’re traveling or moving, or if you have international clients or a global team and want to share project files the situation is pretty bad.

    http://www.adobe.com/go/wheretobuycc

    There are countries in Europe where neighboring countries a train ride away are not supported. Andorra, Croatia, Isle of Man, Jersey, Macedonia, Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino, Serbia (and Iceland and Greenland). I think none of the South Pacific and Caribbean nations are supported, and it’s only available in a few Latin American and Asian countries.

    Speaking of which, are stats of the high adoption quoted primarily in the US? Also, how does it break down among individuals vs businesses? From what I know of other industry in other countries, I would be surprised if the uptake is high outside.

    • Hey there NP, the latest adoption figures are not broken out or available by country but are worldwide. Generally for Adobe’s revenues in recent years, about half has come from the Americas, a quarter from EMEA, and a quarter from Asia.

      However, regarding the list of countries where Creative Cloud is now offered, we have to disagree. Looking at the data in the chart you posted, CC is now available for anyone to buy in 84 different countries worldwide… That’s a lot, and well over twice the amount for when Creative Cloud was first released in 2012.

      While not everyone has access yet, Adobe tells us they continue to work to expand the availability on an ongoing basis – so look for still more countries to be added in 2015. And don’t forget that Creative Suite was never sold everywhere either – a universal global footprint is challenging to achieve for any company or product.

      Finally, on the question of opening your files when a subscription has ended… The Creative Cloud itself (including the permanently free version) is getting very capable of displaying and manipulating different Adobe file format types including .PSD, .AI, .INDD, etc – so that users can view many of these files indefinitely. For more on this capability, see the links in Myth #7 above.

      Also, for the past couple of years, Adobe has been customarily resetting the free trial periods for all users on the frequency of 1-2 times per year. So if your paid membership has expired, then opening up all of your files down the road could be as simple as just grabbing the latest free trial and firing it up.

      Those are just a couple of ideas. Lightroom itself also recently started offering a “read-only” version to lapsed subscribers for long-term access to your catalog… And we hope other CC applications may follow in this vein.

      Meanwhile, the cost of subscribing to CC keeps getting lower (as described in Myth #6 above) – like for example with the permanent Photography Plan, and most recently with Adobe’s Black Friday deals.

      So we’re pretty optimistic that everything is slowly but surely heading in the right direction, with the company gradually working out any kinks that remain.

  19. np

    Thanks for the response. It’s true that CS package was not sold everywhere but you could still import it. Even sanctioned countries could go this route. Australians and others got around high pricing by importing the N.American version. Anyways, it is encouraging to see the list of countries grow.

    I wasn’t aware of the read-only version of Lightroom. I’m not a photographer but I agree that having tools to extract or export assets would allay my fears about unusable files.

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