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Author Topic: Adobe needs your feedback...  (Read 4951 times)
Rick Popham
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« on: September 26, 2012, 07:05:27 PM »
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I just got an email from Adobe asking me to take part in a survey regarding Adobe creative software applications.  The survey presented several pages of pricing options for both suite and individual applications, in perpetual and subscription licensing options.  I am not interested in the "Cloud", so I only responded to reasonably priced perpetual upgrades on the applications I use.  One confusion was that they kept asking if I would buy (or subscribe) to Lightroom 4, and because I already use LR4, I kept saying no.

At any rate, the meat and purpose of the survey seemed to revealed in the last two questions.  One was a checklist of reasons I would object to a subscription, and the last question asked if I would buy a subscription if perpetual licenses were no longer offered.

Now I am a relatively happy user of Adobe products and feel that they give me good value, especially since I am on the upgrade path.  But I have ZERO interest in subscribing to Adobe's "Cloud" thing.  I have posted here before on my belief that Adobe is hellbent on changing their licensing to subscription only and I take this survey as proof that that is their intent.  But this survey got me thinking about something Adobe may not have intended:  How could I change my workflow to avoid a reliance on Adobe products?

I'm kind of thinking they will leave Lightroom as a perpetual product.  The reason -- competition.  Aperture is a direct competitor to LR.  We can thank the existence of Aperture for the new lower price of LR, AND the lack of that infernal Product Activation that plagues every other Adobe product but Elements.  If LR escapes the cloud, I could use it as a RAW convertor.  I could keep a machine that would run the last perpetual Photoshop version, and all would be well for a few years.

If LR becomes subscription only, I guess I would switch to Capture One.  I would again keep a machine to run the last perpetual Photoshop. I imagine that new printers would pose a problem with this scenario, given the way that PS and LR interact with the printer drivers, so I suppose I would have to spring for a RIP, such as ImagePrint, which would arguably give me better print quality anyway. 

I know I'm probably being a bit cranky about this whole prospect, but I really don't want Adobe to have a recurring charge to my credit card and I don't want to endure recurring mandatory Activation checks.  I wonder if anyone else has any suggestions about becoming "Adobe Free".



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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2012, 08:09:03 PM »
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You could try Corel or Gimp.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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daws
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« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2012, 08:26:50 PM »
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...this survey got me thinking about something Adobe may not have intended:  How could I change my workflow to avoid a reliance on Adobe products?

Bingo. Adobe's marketing-driven management seems to be forgetting that what is useful, convenient and economical for the users' workflow makes apps commercially flourish, not what is useful, convenient and economical for the app publisher. The same user workflow/app development loop that built Photoshop can just as easily build a competitor.


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lfeagan
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« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2012, 09:20:36 PM »
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It certainly seems like the general trend with software is to move to a subscription model. I actually like this model and switched over to the Creative Cloud. I ran the numbers comparing pricing to the Master Suite upgraded regularly (what I previously used) and until the 10th year going with Cloud cost me less. On the 10th year (and thereafter) Adobe will finally start to get more money from me.

The Creative Cloud, at least initially, seems to be quite popular. Adobe recently put out quarterly financials and had a reduction from their (and analysts) expected earnings. The reason given was that a larger number of users had chosen to move to the cloud rather than upgrade their existing suite than anticipated. While eventually Adobe will make more money with the cloud, that is many years off.

It should be interesting to see how this plays out. I don't expect Adobe will eliminate the perpetual license versions for at least another two major releases (4 years).
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Lance

Nikon: D700, D800E, PC-E 24mm f/3.5D ED, PC-E 45mm f/2.8D ED, PC-E 85mm f/2.8D, 50mm f/1.4G, 14-24 f/2.8G ED, 24-70 f/2.8G ED, 70-200 f/2.8G ED VR II, 400mm f/2.8G ED VR
Fuji: X-Pro 1, 14mm f/2.8, 18mm f/2.0, 35mm f/1.4
Mark D Segal
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« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2012, 09:43:15 PM »
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Is it the case with these Cloud-based apps that if one is not near an internet connection they can't be used, or if the connection were poor usage would somehow be affected? That is the only real downside - if applicable - I can see to it. When I think about it, I don't need to own a perpetual license to Photoshop. Every 18 months they are anyhow getting over 200 bucks from me to upgrade it. It is only if the application reached the point that upgrades become completely superfluous that a perpetual license would be advantageous.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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lfeagan
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« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2012, 10:13:17 PM »
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Is it the case with these Cloud-based apps that if one is not near an internet connection they can't be used, or if the connection were poor usage would somehow be affected? That is the only real downside - if applicable - I can see to it.

It only checks in once every 30 days, as billing is monthly, to see if your account is in good standing (paid).
« Last Edit: September 26, 2012, 10:14:55 PM by lfeagan » Logged

Lance

Nikon: D700, D800E, PC-E 24mm f/3.5D ED, PC-E 45mm f/2.8D ED, PC-E 85mm f/2.8D, 50mm f/1.4G, 14-24 f/2.8G ED, 24-70 f/2.8G ED, 70-200 f/2.8G ED VR II, 400mm f/2.8G ED VR
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daws
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« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2012, 12:43:47 AM »
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...That is the only real downside - if applicable - I can see to it.

Not the only real downside.

Cybercrime moves to the cloud

Wozniak: The cloud is a nightmare





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David Good
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« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2012, 05:06:12 AM »
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I'm with you on this one Rick, not interested in the slightest in giving control of my work over to a network. I am naturally suspicious so I would need some real convincing that this would be of benefit to my workflow. As well, where I live the connection speeds are just not there, not even close. I can't help asking myself, "what's in it for them, where's the catch?" I guess I'm showing my age but I don't even own or desire any of those pads or pods that all the kids have (just a crusty old fart set in his ways which are just fine the way they are thank-you very much).

No need for a RIP if running Windows, Qimage is a wonderful program that produces excellent results.

There are many other image editing solutions out there now. I too will stop upgrading if the only path is the cloud(s). My 2 cents worth.



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RFPhotography
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« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2012, 06:53:09 AM »
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It certainly seems like the general trend with software is to move to a subscription model. I actually like this model and switched over to the Creative Cloud. I ran the numbers comparing pricing to the Master Suite upgraded regularly (what I previously used) and until the 10th year going with Cloud cost me less. On the 10th year (and thereafter) Adobe will finally start to get more money from me.

The Creative Cloud, at least initially, seems to be quite popular. Adobe recently put out quarterly financials and had a reduction from their (and analysts) expected earnings. The reason given was that a larger number of users had chosen to move to the cloud rather than upgrade their existing suite than anticipated. While eventually Adobe will make more money with the cloud, that is many years off.

It should be interesting to see how this plays out. I don't expect Adobe will eliminate the perpetual license versions for at least another two major releases (4 years).

What are those numbers based on?  What assumptions for upgrade pricing?  What upgrade frequency (e.g., every new version, every other, every third)?  What assumptions for price increases in the subscription?  Saying Adobe would get more out of you only after 10 years needs a lot more information to know how realistic that may be.
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RFPhotography
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« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2012, 06:58:02 AM »
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Is it the case with these Cloud-based apps that if one is not near an internet connection they can't be used, or if the connection were poor usage would somehow be affected? That is the only real downside - if applicable - I can see to it. When I think about it, I don't need to own a perpetual license to Photoshop. Every 18 months they are anyhow getting over 200 bucks from me to upgrade it. It is only if the application reached the point that upgrades become completely superfluous that a perpetual license would be advantageous.

Not quite.  Adobe isn't implementing true 'cloud-based' software.  The application is still resident on your computer.  What they're doing is billing you every month.  The software connects to the server each month to see if your billing is current.  If it isn't, you're locked out from using the software till the bill is paid.  So if you don't have an internet connection on the day the software does the verification, you could be hooped.  I'm not sure what, if any, grace periods Adobe has built into the system.  It could present problems for people who travel frequently and may not have constant access to an internet connection.
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2012, 07:15:29 AM »
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It could present problems for people who travel frequently and may not have constant access to an internet connection.

Bingo.

They will have to provide for this.

And thanks for the other clarifications. Very helpful.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
lfeagan
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« Reply #11 on: September 27, 2012, 10:56:11 AM »
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What are those numbers based on?  What assumptions for upgrade pricing?  What upgrade frequency (e.g., every new version, every other, every third)?  What assumptions for price increases in the subscription?  Saying Adobe would get more out of you only after 10 years needs a lot more information to know how realistic that may be.

You should run your own numbers based on your scenario. I ran numbers for my scenario and for me it made sense. I posted my chart in a previous discussion on this topic.

I upgrade every version. If you upgrade every-other version, the break-even point shifts down a few years.

I didn't put in any price increases for the subscription or the upgrades. Given the non-existence of any historical data for price increases on the cloud version, the only assumption left is that it would increase at the same rate as the prior perpetual versions. Rather than deal with increasing prices at the same rate, I simply left them at their current prices. The overall difference this makes in the calculation is less than a year.

Once again, you should be responsible and run the numbers for your scenario.

If you are not using most of the applications, you would be better served with one of the smaller packages bought with perpetual licensing.

I think it would be interesting to have a "make your own collection" option where you could pick any 5 applications for $25/month.

The cloud version does not require a perpetual or high-speed Internet connection. The traffic transferred for authentication/license checking is a little over 30 KiB. Yes, I actually computed this. There were a total of 61 packets sent/received. On my connection the process took about 4 seconds from the start to the end of packets being sent to/received from lm.licenses.adobe.com.
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Lance

Nikon: D700, D800E, PC-E 24mm f/3.5D ED, PC-E 45mm f/2.8D ED, PC-E 85mm f/2.8D, 50mm f/1.4G, 14-24 f/2.8G ED, 24-70 f/2.8G ED, 70-200 f/2.8G ED VR II, 400mm f/2.8G ED VR
Fuji: X-Pro 1, 14mm f/2.8, 18mm f/2.0, 35mm f/1.4
Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2012, 01:35:28 AM »
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I just checked the Adobe site to see what updates they were offering and was dismayed to too how they are trying to push us into the cloud. If you want the latest version of Photoshop (13.1) it is ONLY available via a Cloud subscription.

The Cloud might make sense to some people who use a lot of Adobe products. A bargain even. But I am interested only in Photoshop. I would never use another app, and paying $540 a year just to keep my Photoshop running is frankly a bit of a joke. Even students are expected to pay $360/year for Photoshop now.

And I am also on the road a lot. The thought of my Photoshop dying without notice while I am on the road without internet is not a pleasant one. Guess I'll stick to 13.0 for the moment.
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2012, 05:43:23 AM »
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What would die is if your subscription needs to be renewed while you are out of of reach. You can use the application off-line on your computer as long as the subscription is active. That said I too think it is a needless risk; as for the cost, one needs to compare the new monthly carrying cost for the Cloud option with the most current version upgrade price divided by the 18-month up-grade cycle to see whether in real terms we are paying more per effective month of use or not. Perhaps I didn't get the whole picture right, but I don't think one needs to subscribe to the whole Suite just to use Photoshop. That deserves further checking.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2012, 06:08:31 AM »
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I just checked the Adobe site to see what updates they were offering and was dismayed to too how they are trying to push us into the cloud. If you want the latest version of Photoshop (13.1) it is ONLY available via a Cloud subscription.

The Cloud might make sense to some people who use a lot of Adobe products. A bargain even. But I am interested only in Photoshop. I would never use another app, and paying $540 a year just to keep my Photoshop running is frankly a bit of a joke. Even students are expected to pay $360/year for Photoshop now.

And I am also on the road a lot. The thought of my Photoshop dying without notice while I am on the road without internet is not a pleasant one. Guess I'll stick to 13.0 for the moment.

Hi Graham,

Same here. I only use a limited part of the full suite, which probably makes me a less interesting money maker for Adobe, and they are making that abundantly clear. They are only interested in more of my money. Also the prospect of 'small' increases of a monthly fee, which amount to a significant increase on a 12 month basis (and a new platform for the next increase) are not appealing. The agressiveness with which this program is executed (limiting the upgrade to only the latest version, denying intermediate upgrades to perpetual licence buyers) is appalling, IMO.

Greedy business models are not something I honour with spending my hard earned money on, if I can avoid it.

Thankfully there are increasing numbers of usable alternatives, and some of them are getting better all the time. I am currently investing some time and modest amounts of money in these alternatives and some of them offer features, BTW for less money and more friendly upgrade fees, that have long been unavailable in Photoshop or are implemented is a much better way.

Cheers,
Bart
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k bennett
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« Reply #15 on: December 20, 2012, 07:48:25 AM »
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I had the same survey, and it was clearly interested in what it would take to get me into the Cloud model.

I'm in total agreement with one of the posters above - I use Photoshop and Lightroom, and I'm still on CS4 at home and CS5 at the office. I have no need for all the other apps in the Suite, so paying close to $600/year to keep those two apps current is just crazy for me. I'll buy every other (or every third) Photoshop upgrade for less than $250, and probably all the LR updates, which averages out to maybe $150/yr or close to it.

Grrrr.
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« Reply #16 on: December 20, 2012, 08:05:12 AM »
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I am also not at all interested in the cloud business model, I really only use Photoshop and Lightroom and the price of the cloud subscription is not a viable solution for me. I will probably buy until the standalone upgrades go away and then that will be it for Adobe for me. I just don't think it will be good for small business holders like me, so I will start using alternatives and that in a way will make those solutions more useful in the long run. Adobe may end up creating more competition for similar products and lose customers in the long run. Greed may make them lose more revenue.

Alan
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Alan Smallbone
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b2martin
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« Reply #17 on: December 20, 2012, 08:40:50 AM »
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I am not interested in the Cloud.  I only use Photoshop and if it was only available on the Cloud I would chang to another software. 
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Ben Rubinstein
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« Reply #18 on: December 20, 2012, 09:47:27 AM »
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Photoshop only also and the cloud numbers are ridiculous. Wanna bet also that the moment they lock out perpetual licenses the prices start to creep up? Of course the 'screw the europeans' pricing translates also to the cloud, now with even less excuses.

What I think many people will do is say 'I have LR to do RAW processing, for the stuff I need PS for, heck I don't need more than CS5/6 can do'. In most cases they would be right. I know that it's true for myself and my studio as well as my wedding business and that's why I'm still on CS5. There's a limit to how much need most photographers have for what is increasingly becoming 'gimmick upgrades' from a photographers point of view.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #19 on: December 20, 2012, 10:23:55 AM »
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I am not interested in the Cloud.  I only use Photoshop and if it was only available on the Cloud I would chang to another software. 

Hi,

For all sorts of specialized image editing I suggest to keep an eye on the TopazLabs plugins, which can not only enhance the functionality of some older Photoshop releases but can also be used as standalone in combination with their PhotoFXlabs application (which also uses layers with opacity blending). They occasionally have upgrades of the plugins with a promotional discount which may also apply to other plugins. IFAIK their upgrades have sofar always been free for existing users.

While most of their filters are potentially a bit strong on effects, when used with moderation they can really turn bland images into something much more pleasing to the eye.

Cheers,
Bart
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