Monday, May 6, 2013

Adobe Drops Perpetual License Model: Why Photoshop is Like Gasoline

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I have been trying Adobe Creative Cloud for almost a year and, I must admit, I really like how it works. Installing and uninstalling products couldn't be simpler. Routine updates to the suite of products get installed smoothly in the background, and occasionally these updates have included feature upgrades. Plus the Cloud has provided a trouble free solution to my occasional need to work from different workstations.
Prior to starting my Cloud subscription, on average I had been spending a few hundred dollars per year on regular upgrades to Photoshop, Lightroom and Acrobat, and less frequent upgrades to Illustrator and Dreamweaver. When my discounted introductory Cloud subscription expires, and it starts costing me $50/month, that will likely increase my annual Adobe expenses somewhat. It's arguably a justifiable increase: thanks to the Cloud model, I have been getting good use out of some Adobe products, like InDesign, that I hadn't been using previously.
No matter how you look at it, Adobe product licensing is a big expense for a one man business like Lumacraft Photography. But, compared to the perpetual license model, cash flow and budgeting are a lot easier with the monthly Cloud subscription payment option. Plus, I no longer have to spend any time evaluating the various upgrade license and product bundle options, making purchasing decisions and arrangements, and manually downloading and installing software updates. So, I can accept Adobe's decision to drop the perpetual license option as being sensible streamlining for them, and of little consequence to me, other than greater convenience.
To me, using Adobe products feels a lot like keeping the car filled with gas. The cost of it really galls me, but it’s something that I rely on almost daily.  I couldn't run my business without it. The moment that I find a truly viable, less expensive alternative, I will switch. In the meantime, I will keep on paying the monthly bill, and keep on trying to get as much value for my money as I can.

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