Despite Adobe Claims, Users Don’t Love New Subscription Plan

585 396 Derek Kimball

adobe cloud

Adobe announced recently that it will be replacing it’s “Creative Suite” with a Cloud based subscription only model. No longer will consumers be able to purchase a copy of the latest version Photoshop, Illustrator, etc and use it as long as they wish. Instead, a mandatory monthly or annual fee will be required for continued use of the software.

So what do the Adobe users think of all of this? Well, according to Scott Morris, senior director of product marketing for Creative Cloud:

“Overwhelmingly, when you compare the people who’ve complained about the new model to the people who loved it, it definitely skewed heavily to the new model” he said. “Obviously we would not be making a decision this big if the percentage of people in that category was so big it was the wrong thing for us to do.”

So what do Adobe users ACTUALLY think of this “Cloud” based subscription model? Well, quite the contrary it seems. After reading dozens of comments from LinkedIn discussions, various blogs, and Adobe’s very own forums; the consensus is overwhelmingly not in support of this proposed move. It actually seems that over 90% of people are in opposition. A petition to Adobe is even in the works, with nearly 13,000 signatures so far and growing rapidly. Update: as of 5/31/13 the petition now has over 27,000 signatures.

So what are users so concerned about? Well, some of the common indifferences seem to be 1) Not being able to access work documents during times of financial hardship or after retirement 2) not being able to revert to an older version of a program if a bug or hack is encountered, 3) fear of future price hikes, and 4) Adobe not giving their customers any choice in this matter. Whether justified or not, people don’t seem to be on board with this new model. Apparently the folks at Adobe think otherwise.

Please share your thoughts below. What do you think of Adobe’s move to go subscription only? Are they shooting themselves in the foot or is this a fair move? I posted this article in the AIGA LinkedIn forum discussions…there have been some very interesting comments left by graphic designers and Adobe users.


Derek Kimball

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All stories by: Derek Kimball
  • Bob Millard

    I absolutely hate this move. I’m afraid of the listed concerns as well. It’s just Adobe screwing us into making more money. Convenience my ass. I don’t think I’ve ever experience a new update without bugs. Some pretty major.

  • DesignBuddy

    Thanks for the comment Bob. Yeah, I never like to deal with brand new software because of the bug problems you mention. From my understanding; unlike the past model where users can access old versions of their software to avoid new update problems, cloud users will have to wait for Adobe to fix any major bugs. And not to mention hacking threats…remember the Sony hack that took their system down for weeks. Oh well..I’ll ride the wave as long as it doesn’t try to drown me.

  • Ally

    In addition, educational institutions may be forced to raised tuition and no longer be able to provide students with affordable packages. Students pay a high cost of education and this will not help improve that.

  • DesignBuddy

    Thanks for your input Ally. Yeah I’m not sure if the costs will be any higher for educational institutions. I’m guessing Adobe will still be offering some sort of educational discount, but who knows.

  • Michael

    Unfortunately this is a sad day for Adobe. I’ve been a loyal user since Photoshop 2.0 and InDesign 1.5. Back when Quark was still king. This type of product decision reminds me of the days when Quark was untouchable as a layout product and often made decisions that seemed unfair to its customers. We longed for an alternative and then came InDesign. Maybe this opens the door for competition to challenge such a dominate brand as Adobe. I’d rather see greater loyalty from Adobe to customers who have supported their products for years, but this is not a good sign of things to come.

  • LouQ13

    Yes, I was just thinking exactly what Michael says: Re: Quark, did not pay attention to it’s customers and treated us badly, we all know what happened. The same thing may be underway for Adobe with this info, if it is true. I think Adobe is too wise to go ahead with something like this.

  • GeniusDesign

    The only clients that I think this would help (and maybe the ones that Adobe surveyed) are bigger companies that need to buy multiple licenses and keep track of versions etc… These companies could out-weight the fee by hiring less IT guys… but that is not me, so I am not sure?!

  • DesignBuddy

    Thanks for the comments all. Hopefully Adobe does a real consumer survey and learn that the majority of it’s users are not in favor of their new model. I will remain an Adobe software user as long as I can, but there is a line in the sand. It would be nice to have more choice in the market, that’s for sure.

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