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Adobe Creative Suite 6
This week in Los Angeles, Adobe is holding their annual Adobe MAX conference for users, developers, and industry reporters. It’s their venue for generating enthusiasm for their product line and their platform for making major announcements. This year’s Adobe MAX was launched with a bang.

Adobe has announced that this is the end of the line for their Creative Suite product line. You can still buy CS6 (for now, at least), but this will be the last time you will be able to purchase any software from Adobe.

Say WHAT!!??

Yep. After this, Adobe will no longer “sell” software. From this point forward, everything is moving to the Cloud.

Adobe’s “Creative Cloud” is an Internet-based software subscription model that has been in effect for almost a year now.While some people have balked at making the leap to subscribing to software rather than purchasing a license (read the End-User License Agreement on any piece of software — you never “owned” any of it — you just bought a license to be able to use it), there are a number of advantages to Adobe’s Cloud scheme. The cost of subscribing to the Creative Cloud is about the same as buying an upgrade under the old system, so that’s a wash. But Adobe gives you much, much more software than you got with the Creative Suite, even if you bought the massive-priced Master Collection. Will you use all of that new software? Not a chance in the world. But might you use some of it? You bet. (At least I know that I will.)

Another advantage of the Creative Cloud is that you no longer have to wait a year or two for a major upgrade for your software. As improvements, upgrades, and bug-fixes are made to any of the components of the Creative Cloud, you will be able to download them immediately. And speaking of downloading, you will indeed be downloading the software and running it on your local computer. The software itself doesn’t reside in the Cloud, and you don’t need to have access to the Internet to use the programs once you’ve downloaded them. But you do need to be online at least once a month while you start up any Adobe program to ping their server in the Cloud and let them know that you’re still there. (It’s automatic. No action required on your part.)

Early Adopters

Here at Data Designs Publishing, we’ve been Creative Cloud users since it was first rolled out last summer. Except for the fact that we’re paying a software bill every month like it was a utility bill, we’ve experienced no change to the way that we do business as a result of using the Creative Cloud. Don’t be afraid. It won’t hurt you. Some people have expressed a fear that after everyone gets signed onto the Cloud, Adobe will jack up the price of their software and you’ll either have to pay up or they’ll turn off your ability to use it. That scenario is in no one’s best interest. How many subscribers, how much revenue, and how much trust and reputation would Adobe lose by doing something stupid like that? It would be suicide for them. It isn’t going to happen. But it is true that if you don’t pay your subscription bill, they disable your software until you do.

OK, so how much is that bill? For new users — those who aren’t upgrading from a qualified copy of Creative Suite — a Creative Cloud subscription is $50 per month with a full year commitment. For those who are upgrading from CS3 or above, Adobe is offering a 40% discount until July 31, 2013. That takes the price to $30 per month with a full year commitment. $360 for a full year of all of Adobe’s best software. That’s a great deal! If you want to jump on that before the deal expires, CLICK HERE.

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