Four days later than planned, Adobe has released its Creative Cloud software-and-services subscription bundle.
Creative Cloud includes CS6 versions of all of tools in the company’s Creative Suite Master Collection – from Photoshop CS6, Illustrator CS6 and InDesign CS6 to Flash Pro CS6 and Dreamweaver CS6 to Premiere Pro CS6 and After Effects CS6, plus the latest version of Acrobat Pro. A Cloud subscription would give users access to both Mac and Windows versions of all software.
The software part of Creative Cloud will also feature Muse, Edge, Photoshop Lightroom 4 and the Touch Apps for tablets, The InDesign-like web design tool Muse – which was previously in beta – will see its first full release as part of Creative Cloud. Muse is also available separately for £11.11 plus VAT/$15 per month with an annual subscription and £15.08 plus VAT/$25 per month for month-to-month subscription.
The Edge web animation tool will be in beta beyond the release of CS6, but the full version will be added to Creative Cloud subscriptions when it ships. The Photoshop Lightroom 4 photography application will be added a later date.
Subscribers also get online shared storage – 20GB as standard, but this is upgradeable – with sync capabilities a la Dropbox, Business Catalyst website hosting, access to TypeKit web fonts for online projects. Adobe is also launching an online community site with training, forums and showcase facilities – but this won’t be ready at launch time. At the launch of CS6, Adobe gave a sneak peek at a myPantone-style app for capturing colours through a smartphone camera.
The Creative Cloud includes future upgrades, and will also see subscribers get access to tools before they go into the .5 or .0 releases – similar to what Autodesk does for subscription customers to its 3D tools such as Maya and 3ds Max.
When Adobe first announced Creative Cloud, it said that subscribers would also get free access to its Touch mobile apps for iOS and Android devices – Collage, Debut, Ideas, Kuler Photoshop Touch, Proto. This has been hampered by Apple not allowing apps to be sold in this way, so instead Adobe is offering a more convoluted system where you get a month's free Creative Cloud membership if you buy three of the £6.99-inc-VAT-each apps (and log into Creative Cloud with them). This system is also used for the Android versions of the app.
For freelancers and other users buying individual memberships, Creative Cloud costs £38.11 plus VAT/US$50 per month if you sign up for at least a year and £57.17 plus VAT/$75 per month on a pay-as-you-go basis. A special introductory offer of £22.23 plus VAT/$30 per month for CS3, CS4, CS5 and CS5.5 owners is also available.
Also rolling out in the latter part of the year will be Creative Cloud Team, which include shared storage and workspaces, licence management, and the ability to collaborate on projects. Studios interested in this can sign up for what Adobe calls Team Ready, which offers the standard Creative Cloud package until later this year for the standard price per user per month, when you'll be automatically upgraded to the Team version and pay $69.99 per user per month (UK pricing for this is tbc, but it works out about £43.56 plus VAT). Adobe hasn't announced if volume discounts for larger studios and companies will be on offer.