A death knell could be heard around the Adobe Max conference in Los Angeles today as it was announced that Creative Suite is to be no more. There will be no CS7 because CS6 is now officially the final release of the series. In its stead, Adobe will offer all of its design software exclusively through the Creative Cloud (CC). Starting in June, the "next generation" of Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and all other CS programs will be available on a subscription basis through the Cloud. Adobe will continue to offer CS6 to consumers for the foreseeable future, but they will no longer be updating it.
Word in the tech world has it that Adobe is making the switch to CC to ensure a more constant source of income. Instead of making lots of money once every other year when a new version of CS is launched, they can now rely on a more steady flow of income from subscriptions through CC. It is also thought that software piracy has weighed heavily in this decision. With a subscription based service, it will be more difficult for users to share programs illegally, thus relieving Adobe of what had been an enormous scourge to their business.
No doubt there will be blow back from customers as a result of this announcement. At first glance, it's easy to assume that a subscription will be more expensive and less desirable than owning off-the-shelf software. Numbers have been crunched by many in the industry, however, (refer to Sarah Schwartz's cost analysis of CC vs. CS from July 2012) and the general consensus is that users will save money as long as they subscribe to multiple applications. And, we still get to keep the software on our desktops. If that's not enough to move you forward in the CC direction, Adobe is promising lots of new features and perks to those who subscribe.
It seems like this is the way software use is heading, so like it or not, resistance is futile!
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