Adobe’s subscription only plan meets backlash

Thousands of users of Adobe Systems Inc.’s software are taking to the Internet their displeasure over the company’s decision to adopt a subscription only model for its popular creative tools.

More than 5,000 people have already signed an online campaign on Change. org calling on Adobe to discontinue its subscription-based model for Creative Cloud. is a campaign site. Creative Cloud is the new name for the company’s Creative Suite applications which includes the likes of Photoshop, Acrobat and InDesign.

“In the end it comes down to this: all of Adobe’s consumers will not be able to make such a large payment every month on the CC subscription model,” according to the petition started by Derek Schoffstall. “In the short term, the subscription model looks to be okay, but over time the only entity that is benefiting from this is Adobe.”

On Monday, Adobe announced that it was ceasing development on CS applications sold as perpetual licenses and would only upgrade software when it was licensed via subscription.
Microsoft Corp., a long-time partner of Adobe, has taken a different route. Although Microsoft is already offering Office 365 on via subscription Clin Patterson, director of commnications for Office, said his company is not going to rush into this business model.
“Like Adobe, we think subscription software-as-a-service is the future. However, unlike Adobe, we think people’s shift from packaged software to subscription servicde will take time,” he said in a blog.
He did not set an specific timetable when Microsoft will shift to a subscription model but said: “Within a decade, we think everyone will choose to subscribe because the benefits are undeniable.”

Under the traditional perpetual license model, users only paid for the software once and used the product for as long as they want. This model was beneficial and much cheaper for many users of the CS.

A subscription-based license would cost user more in the long run. For example, a perpetual license for CS6 Design and Web Premium Student and Web Premiums Student and Teacher Edition is around $599.

With the $30/month subscription for Creative Cloud, a student would end up paying more for a subscription after 20 months.

On the other hand, a student that purchases a perpetual license and uses the software for more than 20 months ends ups saving more.

The monthly $50 subscription fees, after say 26 months, may add up to more than the perpetual license price for something like C6 Design Standard which retails for $1,299.

However, it takes longer for the Creative Cloud monthly fees to exceed the price of full-featured bundles like CS6 Design and Web Premium. At a monthly fee of $50, a user would have to pay for 38 months to match the retail price of $ 1,899.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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