Adobe Kills Creative Suite, Goes Subscription Only Instead

Adobe Kills Creative Suite, Goes Subscription Only Instead

Adobe announced today that it no longer sells standalone copies of its Creative Suite software and will only offer updates to its Adobe Creative Cloud subscription service. That means CS6 is the last version of Creative Suite you can buy and download — if you want access to tools like Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign, you’ll have to have an active subscription to get them.

Adobe says that customers “vastly prefer” the cloud-based subscription options over the standalone downloadable titles. It says it will give users who only want access to a single tool (like Photoshop, for example), instead of an entire suite of apps the ability to subscribe to just the program they’re looking for. Plus, Adobe has lowered the price of those individual app subscriptions to $10 per month from $20 per month. You can read all of its pricing plans here.

Adobe says that signing up for Creative Cloud also gives it the ability to roll out updates and upgrades to its applications when it can instead of waiting to bundle them all into a major CS uplift. We’ve done our own analysis on whether it’s better to rent versus buy, and ultimately whether the change is good for you depends on the type of user you are.

If you’ve purchased a perpetual licence or have upgrade rights based on your last purchase, Adobe says it will ease your transition to Creative Cloud (likely by offering a steep discount). The change also makes financial sense for Adobe, since it can get a steady stream of subscription fees instead of a major uptick in revenue with each CS release. Plus, it cuts down on piracy, since all of its apps are web-enabled and require active subscriptions to work. For more details on how the new subscription model will work, check out CNET’s report below.

Adobe kills Creative Suite, goes subscription-only [CNET]


  • “Plus, it cuts down on piracy…” – Negative, as the software is still locally installed, it will be cracked just like all the versions before it.

    Also, the linked pricing guide lists $20 (not $10) for a single app, as far as I can see.

  • I’m sorry, but NO!
    I’m not paying $49.99 a month for a home user version of Adobe.

  • Although I don’t usually support mandatory subscription plans, this is a step forward for the fair Australian pricing alone. I was happy to find that the AU price per month is the same as the States’.

    I will now be paying for the latest version of Creative Suite for the first time in ten years of using the software.

  • It’s not that bad as everyone makes it out to be. I think it’s great for students, this will allow us to have access to all software (rather shelling out student price for one or more) at a fair price. A monthly fee is easier to manage and work around rather than saving for a year for the software we need straight away.

    Hopefully they keep the Australian prices down.

  • Poor, poor Adobe. I hope this new strategy finally helps them put some food on the table. God knows the fate of companies that allow software to be bought, owned and only paid for once.

  • The ‘amateur designer’ population will decrease I imagine with the subscription only route, separating from the actual serious professionals in the design industry.

    • Well, I think it will increase. Any tit can now decide to buy a month trial to Adobe Cloud and call him/herself a “designer”

      • People don’t just buy or use adobe software for the sake of being called a designer though Dr_Stef, I for one am an amateur and i use adobe because it is so widely known and because it gets the job done and has so much support online, not because I want to be called a designer. Also, if taken literally, those amateur’s, by your logic become “designers” making them no longer an amateur, therefore reducing the number of amatuers.

  • So I will never completely own CS again? This sucks major balls. No more hard copies!
    I mean I get the whole fight against piracy and update thing, but I don’t want to keep
    paying my hard earned cash for something that will never pay itself off. Once I hit that mark of
    paying for a full version of Master CS, the bills continue? Not cool Adobe! Not cool!

    Maybe I am just old fashioned, but I’d rather save money and sit on Cs6 for as
    long as I can. I did that with Cs2 for a very long time and saved heaps.

  • RRP of CS6 Master Collection: USD$2599 or AUD$4344
    $50 per month for Creative Cloud Complete x 12 months in a year = $600
    x 2 years = $1200
    x 4 years = $2400

    CS6 MC is only better value for money if you bought it from the US and use it for over 4 years, and 4 months. I don’t understand why people are complaining about this.

  • On the surface, it works out to be a little cheaper. Let’s say I pay $63p/m for the “Complete Individual” pack. It’s $756 per year ($63×12). That means I should be able to go for five years before the cost of the cloud version matches the price of buying it in full ($4000).

    It would be a little better if you could pay for apps on a one-off basis. I don’t always use Illustrator, and when I do, it’s only for a few weeks, so if I’m going to pay for it, why should it be for a whole year?

    And Adobe’s reasoning isn’t quite right. They say they don’t want to wait for a major version update before packing in changes and such, but, they don’t. I don’t know how many times CS6 has asked me to update with bugfixes, security fixes and in some cases, new content options.

    I’ll just sit back and watch as people continue to pirate Adobe as normal. Especially the hobbyists, who can’t afford $4000 and don’t make enough money doing what they do, to afford $62 or even $20 a month (because let’s face it, Adobe will jack the price back up once the IT pricing inquiry group looks the other way, citing more content = more money)

    • Where did you get $63 from? The pricing plan linked in the article doesn’t have anything at $63. The Complete pack is $50 per month.

      Good point about not being able to pay on a one-off basis. Adobe are advertising a monthly subscription, but in the fine print you have to sign up for 12 months.

      You’re also right about them increasing the prices. The Adobe website states “Save up to 40% on your first year when you join by July 31”. Looks like the price will almost double. That’s still significantly less than the price of the Creative Suite though.

      • I was grabbing my info from :

        Right now, 14 CS6 software products are included. … The 12-month contract costs $62.99 a month, which totals up to $751.92 a year (the equivalent of just under eight month-to-month uses).

        Guess that’s the old pricing scheme?

        And yep, it is significantly less than the CS (which clocks in at $4000? Unless I’m getting old information again..) but it looks like the IT pricing inquiry team have taken an interest in this, and if it goes ahead, may see Adobe facing the inquiry again, and forced to answer some more questions.

        But all that aside, I still wouldn’t be able to get value for money out of CC. I’m a semi-pro photographer (still a hobbyist, but trying to sell prints and such to earn a bit of a living) and make next to nothing on my photos, meaning $20 a month for one app is still a cost I’d need to recuperate. And I’ve used Illustrator once for a client job, and that paid less than the cost of Creative Suite, and would have taken almost half of the profit if I’d gone for CC. Food and shelter? Ain’t nobody got time for that!

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