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Adobe Unveils New ‘CC’ Release (CS7) Exclusively in Creative Cloud



We’re coming to you today direct from the MAX Conference, where Adobe has just made a blockbuster announcement.

The next generation of Creative Suite products – sometimes referred to as CS7 or CS-Next – will actually be called “CC” (as in “Photoshop CC“) and from here on out will be available exclusively through the Creative Cloud.  So there will not be a line called “Creative Suite 7.”

What this means is that we’ve reached the end of the line with the traditional high-priced boxed releases – the last one was CS6, which came out over a year ago. Adobe will continue to offer CS6 for purchase and free trial going forward (in download form only), for those who need perpetual licensing – however, if you want the the new versions of Adobe’s creative tools with the latest features and upgrades, then getting Adobe CC via the Creative Cloud is now the only way to do it.

Adobe sees the old model of static, monolithic 12-to-18-month software releases as outmoded in an increasingly fast-moving, connected, and collaborative world… Creative Cloud was introduced 18 months ago and since that time adoption has exceeded expectations: the Cloud has gained millions of users and received nearly 5-star reviews from customers, and so the company is now putting all of their resources into it.

They write:

“Adobe’s desktop tools, previously known as Creative Suite (CS) are now branded CC to reflect that they are an integral part of Creative Cloud and have been reinvented to support a more intuitive, connected way of creating. In all, Creative Cloud will now consist of more than 30 tools and services that enable professional grade content creation and delivery across print, web, mobile apps, video and photography. Focusing development on Creative Cloud will not only accelerate the rate at which Adobe can innovate but also broaden the type of innovation the company can offer the creative community.”

You can read more about Adobe’s reasons for the move in their online message to customers:

« Open Letter from the Creative Cloud Team to Our Creative Users »

What’s New in Adobe CC?

The company has added hundreds of new features into the CC release since CS6, focusing on productivity, performance, and connectivity. The 15 new CC products will download and run locally on your desktop just like normal; they are not web applications nor do they require continual Internet access to use.

They will be available automatically to all Creative Cloud members on the “CC” release date of Monday, June 17th – and free new 30-day trials will be offered for download, even if you already have the free level of Creative Cloud membership and/or have used the CS6 trials.

[UPDATE (June 17th) – Right on schedule, Adobe’s new CC release is now available!]

Even after the CC release ships, Creative Cloud members will continue to be able to download and/or run all the CS6 tools if desired, on the same computer(s). In fact, the CC applica­tions can co-exist side-by-side with all earlier CS versions. As a reminder, Creative Cloud apps can be installed on up to two systems, including both Windows and Mac.

If you don’t want or need the whole Creative Cloud at this time, then Adobe also offers single-app memberships for $19.99 a month. And if you own any previous CS tool (from CS3 to CS6), then you can subscribe to any individual app for just $9.99 a month for the first year. So for example, a Photoshop CS3 user can get Photoshop CC for that price.

Adobe will continue to offer Student & Teacher Editions with discounts up to 70% off the regular prices for education customers including students, teachers, and academic staff. Just be sure you know the key differences between Adobe’s academic versions vs. regular. Here is the link to buy the CS6 education editions if you want that instead of the Cloud.

The company has put together an excellent FAQ that addresses a lot of general questions about the new release. There’s also an extensive set of CC overview videos on Adobe TV.

Here are some important aspects of what’s new with Adobe CC generally:

  • Photoshop CC now includes all of the additional features and functionality that were only available in Photoshop Extended previously.
  • InDesign CC, Flash Pro CC, and Audition CC now come in native 64-bit (fast) versions, in addition to 32-bit versions (similar to Photoshop and Illustrator).
  • Fireworks CS6 will still be included in the Creative Cloud plus sold separately, however is not being upgraded to the “CC” family of tools.
  • Likewise, Encore (for making DVD’s) is also not being updated to CC, but Encore CS6 can be used with Premiere Pro CC.
  • We have the much-requested addition of Adobe InCopy, now included in the Creative Cloud as InCopy CC.
  • Although on customer wishlists, the new Captivate 7 product is not included in the CC release and is purchased separately.
  • Lightroom (including LR5) will continue to be available as a perpetual standalone product, as well as an included part of Creative Cloud.
  • Adobe has lowered some prices with special promotions: Current CS6 owners can now get the Creative Cloud for $19.99 a month for the first year. From CS3 – CS5.5, it’s $29.99.
  • The education deal is back: Students and teachers receive a discount of 60%-70% off the regular price worldwide, and pay US$19.99/month for the complete Cloud.
  • If you need more than one copy, check out Creative Cloud for Teams – where pricing has been reduced to $39.99 a month for the first year (40% off) for upgraders.

For more in-depth coverage, see our CS6 vs. “CC” Version Comparison Guide just published.

Give your input before it ships – what would you like to see in the next release? Or do you have any questions about what’s coming?  Share your thoughts in the comments below or at Adobe’s official feature request “wishlist”

See Also

Get the New Creative Cloud 2021 Direct Download Links

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68 thoughts on “Adobe Unveils New ‘CC’ Release (CS7) Exclusively in Creative Cloud”

  1. How will CC cope with backwards compatibility?

    For example when camera raw (CS 5.5 to 6.0 and LR 3 to 4) changed the basic sliders there was an incompatability between the two editing methods.
    You could still tweak a previously edited image by using the older version of the software without having to start again in new version.

    If/when a similar change happens to CC in the future and with continuous updates will you be able to have more than one version of a product installed?

  2. Do you know how long Adobe will continue selling CS6 for?

    I don’t want to join the cloud just yet. However, I do want to upgrade my CS5 products to CS6. I’m wondering if I need to do it right now, or if they’ll still be sellling CS6 perpetual licenses in a few months time.

    • Greetings Cat, Adobe has not given any dates for when the older CS6 products will stop being sold – so the answer to your question at this point is “indefinitely”… Our guess from discussions with company reps is that it could be on the order of 6 months to 1 year.

  3. I am guessing CS6 will become the de facto standard across pro designers and printers. That suite of tools is perfectly functional and there is very little to attract existing users to the cloud.

  4. I was looking forward to CS 6.5/7, had signed up for a few courses and was floored by your policy. There is NO WAY I’m paying 1) an outrageous monthly amount for s/w and 2) leased s/w. Canceling the classes, will get alternative s/w. You lost a motivated customer. Have no intent of learning Adobe after I start with something else. Goodbye.

  5. Adobe’s web site talks about first year discounts for owners of earlier versions. They mention that if you buy your cloud membership from Adobe, you will be billed monthly, even if you sign up for a full year.

    They also mention that you can buy prepaid 1 year cloud memberships from other resellers.

    However, it looks like you can’t get both the prepaid membership and the upgrade discount at the same time. So it looks like if you want both, you have to get the upgrade from Adobe and put up with the monthly billing for the first year, and then next year, buy the prepaid option to continue your subscription for future years. Is that really how it works?

  6. I am so glad I was able to get my boxed version in time… I kinda knew it was going to be like this. Someone mentioned in another thread that Adobe was going to probably make it ALL cloud-based only and they’re doing it.

    I did sign up for the cloud but should have waited to get in on that $19.99 offer for the year now. That $100 savings would have come in handy.

  7. Last year I spent around 300€ upgrading PS and LR. I took a look at CC prices, and, if I ignore the special rate for existing customers that in any case is only applicable for 1 year, it would cost me around 700€ a year to subscribe to CC. I would get more than what I currently have, but as a (very) amateur photographer these extras are not really any use to me – it’s not as though I’m suddenly going to wake up in the middle of the night wanting to use Illustrator, for instance. So it looks as though Adobe is saying that it’s only interested in the professional market. A legitimate point of view which no doubt makes for a good business model, but not much solace for me and for others like me. Too bad. Either I decide to stick to LR4 and PS6 for the rest of my viable life, or I start looking for alternatives. Linux, Gimp, Darktable for instance?

    • Welcome Allen, nice to see you again and thanks for your comment. Many people don’t realize it yet, but you do not have to buy the full Cloud at all. Adobe also offers Single-Tool Subscriptions for any individual creative product (like Photoshop CC) for $19.99 a month.

      If you’re upgrading from any previous CS tool going back to CS3 (which you are), then that price becomes $9.99/month with their current promotion (£8.78 incl. VAT in the UK). As Photoshop normally costs $700, it’s a pretty good deal.

      So hopefully that will change the math a bit for you. There are plenty of photographers who are not going with the Creative Cloud, but rather just buying a traditional Lightroom license and then combining it with a solo Photoshop subscription. All subscribers get Photoshop CS6.1 now and will be able to download and use the new Photoshop CC soon.

  8. Bye Bye Adobe. Outraged. After their last upgrade fiasco – you won’t be able to upgrade from 3 versions down, to now this.

    Not paying for rented software.

  9. Using the cloud is a bit like saving your money in a mattress in someone else’s loft. You can rest assured someday it will be gone.

  10. @Lost Customer

    Adobe software is the de facto for creative professionals, whether one likes it or not. So Adobe won’t miss a sale just because you’re voting with your feet and purchasing something else.

    If you want to be trained in the GFX / video editing creative industry, Adobe is king.

    Like it or lump it, because your career won’t take off by using alternatives (e.g. GIMP as opposed to Photoshop).

    In any case Adobe CS6 is very powerful and I suggest you sign-up for courses training you in CS6, considering many creative pros still use older versions of CS.

    Since CS6 is the the last Creative Suite in the form of a perpetual license, IMHO, it will still be dominant for at least the next 3 to 4 years, more so than any other previous Creative Suites. So learning CS6 skills will do you no harm, and it can only benefit your future career.

  11. @Louisa

    You are wrong on many things, There are indeed many other software products out there for GFX/Video editing than Adobe. I do know many professionals who aren’t using Adobe and their career is astronomical. They’re surviving quite well without Adobe. We have professionals coming in to our class who have no idea how to even use Adobe software and they have a very successful business and the owner is only 22 years old. There’s also Paint Shop Pro which is now even better then Adobe in some areas and continues to improve. They’re a great tool for professionals.

    Adobe will never be King. Just like Microsoft will never be King of the Universe. They may try, but someone better is always going to outsmart them.

  12. @Chris

    Well I’ve been using Adobe’s “rented software” for nearly a year now and have noticed zero difference.

    Well, I have to admit that the only difference now is that I don’t have a drawer full of useless old versions of Master Collection that I paid $3000 upfront for every time. Oh and the other difference is that I don’t spend $3000 more on the latest version of MC only to find out a new version comes out in 6 months time.

    Yeah, I have to say there are some big differences with using rented software, now that I look at it.

  13. @Rien

    What, and that $3000 investment in Master Collection CS3 isn’t gone already? Jeez. You never own software to begin with, it says so in every EULA, so boo hoo if you don’t have a physical disk version and you’re paying off what you use in small monthly installments vs. having your wallet destroyed every 18 months.

  14. So they want us to rent software?

    CS6 fa life! Glad I got my Master Collection which could easily be relevant for the next 5 years which is plenty of time for Adobe to get their acts together.

    This has the makings of a coming hostage situation that will be countered.

  15. @ProDesignTools

    Thanks for the encouraging reply just when I had one leg out of the window of my 34th floor flat… Yes I realised later that, for the moment at least, LR is still buyable, so I might go the buy + rent way. When I upgraded from PS CS5 to CS6 it cost me 230€, probably a bit less than £200, which is indeed more than 12 x £9. That is comforting! There is still pain and anguish, nonetheless, and that comes from the thought that, for whatever reason, were I to stop renting PS I’d be left with nothing + what I currently have, PS CS6. Depending on how dependent I am on PS and how long I rent, that could be very traumatic! At the very least if you have paid a year’s rental you should be able to come away with something… Thanks again!

  16. @ProDesignTools

    I don’t see how that helps with the billing. I’m sure you are not suggesting that I buy 1 month twice a year, and live off the grace period for the other months. Sure, that would bring the cost down, but that’s just wrong, and I doubt Adobe would really let me do that.

    • No, not at all Jamie – it’s just that some folks had not liked the monthly billing before because it meant that the software would stop working if it wasn’t able to connect to the Internet to revalidate membership once every 35 days… Now, that is far less of a concern – you can be offline for over 99 days and run all the CC products with no problem.

  17. Hi,

    After a quick chat with Adobe, they in fact have let me cancel the previous-priced subscription and repurchase at the new discounted price.

  18. I would advise everyone to buy CS6 while they can.

    Traditionally, large businesses and print houses run older software as a matter of course (it is a hassle upgrading for a large corporation, and printers need to accept files from those running outdated versions).

    The number of people happy with perpetual licensing will add to that even more as they refuse to rent their tools each month (an absurd notion to many professionals) and eventually CS6 will become the standard.

    It’s also worth nothing that Adobe used to have to innovate in their updates & improvements to entice people to update each year or two – but with people now in with the cloud, they need to pay regardless – so there is zero impetus on Adobe to bring out new features.

    That gives CS6 users even less reasons to make the switch.

  19. We will be including them in our rural internet users discrimination lawsuit … users in the rural area are limited to wireless technologies that will not allow a download of this size to fit within the monthly bandwidth usage allocation nor will the download complete because the wireless telcos will throttle back the download so much that it will fail. In either scenario, rural users will not be able to use this software distribution model. This includes any freelance graphic / video production artist or any rural high school or college student.

  20. @Bob

    Bob, apparently you’ve never heard of the upgrade option have you? You pay $3,000 and all future versions are about 50% than the full price.

    Sorry you wasted $3000 for every version when you could have paid a lot less getting the upgrade version. Plus Bob, some people are still using XP Professional 32 bit computers. CS5 is the last version that even works on it minus 2 programs that you have to use CS4 software in order to run.

    I am lucky in the fact that I saved for 3 years and finally got me a Windows 7 computer, or even CS6 won’t work, and I’d be stuck ONLY using CS5 and CS4 on my XP computer.

    Oh and Bob, maybe you should read that EULA a little closer, because unless you purchased the student version, you can sell your previous boxed versions… As long as you first deactivate your serial number, that is.

    You’re missing the point that when you buy a boxed version, you get to use that forever and never have to worry about paying every month to use it. I will still disagree with Adobe for doing this and will never think they’re king of the hill. But I’m trying their cloud for a year, if I’m not satisfied, I have my CS6 Master Collection IN A BOX version that I can use forever and pass down to my children…

    I found your reply a bit rude and uncalled for.

  21. Jane,

    Hit them up if you purchased within the last 30 days. That’s their regular return policy and they are happy to make right on the promotional offer if you are within that window :)

  22. @ Adobe haters:

    Like it or not, Creative Cloud is the future of Adobe (and most other software companies). Although I loath the idea of paying monthly for the rest of my life, I will (just like I do for my cell phone, satellite, NetFlix/Hulu, and internet). Why is this such a foreign concept?

    I upgrade every release, because i like having the best, fastest, most up to date software. In this case, I don’t have to wait 18-24 months to get those updates and I don’t have to pay $1000 at a time. I don’t love every part of the new business model, but it makes sense for both Adobe and myself. Millions of cloud members already and growing daily. This is the future and will eventually be the ONLY choice. Mark my words. You’ll be paying your Microsoft/Apple subscription payments within the next decade…


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