Adobe Creative Suite becomes subscription-only, kills Fireworks

By on May 6, 2013, 7:00 PM

It was Adobe; in the billiard room, with the candlestick... In a single blow, the software-maker dispatched new sales of "perpetual" Creative Suite licenses and announced the languishing demise of Fireworks. The company today said it will no longer sell Creative Suite bundles (or its individual components) as retail products. In place of CS will be Adobe's Creative Cloud -- a subscription-only service. 

"We have no current plans to release another perpetual release of the CS tools and suites. Creative Cloud is going to be our sole focus moving forward," Adobe said.

Meanwhile, Fireworks development has been halted except for discretionary security and bug fixes. However, Adobe was kind enough to promise that Fireworks would remain part of Creative Cloud for an undisclosed period of time and be updated to support the "next versions" of Mac OS X and Windows.

The company claims an "overwhelming" number of customers actually prefer the switch to a $50/month (or $600 annually) plan when compared to purchasing the software à la carte for thousands of dollars. At present, "Creative Cloud" is essentially a digitally-distributed version of Adobe's CS: Master Collection, but requires a monthly subscription validation check. Gone are the days of perpetual licenses which could be used for as long as the owner saw fit.

Existing Creative Suite owners can score special Creative Cloud pricing: $30/month for qualified licensees of previous CS versions (CS3 or new). Meanwhile, CS6 owners (and educational customers) enjoy deeper discounts at just $20/month -- coincidentally the same price new customers can pay to access just a single application (e.g. Photoshop).

Adobe has been working toward a subscription-based model for years; however, no one could be entirely certain when that day would arrive. In March though, the famed Photoshop maker announced its imminent shift to a completely digital distribution system, canning retail sales of Creative Suite discs.

"We expected it to be a couple years before this happened. But we were surprised by how successful Creative Cloud has been," said Adobe. "We know that's going to be a difficult transition for some customers, but we think it's going to be the best move in the long haul."

Photoshop has long-been a piratical favorite, no doubt due to its prohibitive price tag and unique standing as the de facto world-class tool for graphics editing. This factoid has likely fueled Adobe's ongoing desire to move its products to the cloud as less-exploitable services.




User Comments: 45

Got something to say? Post a comment
St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Double that for Australia. Servers cost more here, or something.

2 people like this |
Staff
Julio Franco Julio Franco, TechSpot Editor, said:

Too bad that Fireworks is gone (or receiving no more features, and relevant updates which is the same) it was my all-time favorite image editing software.

2 people like this | BlueDrake said:

Double that for Australia. Servers cost more here, or something.

I honestly hope they don't really, because you already suffer enough. Just they make excuses for anything, distance arguments with online pricing is absurd. If you're actually shipping it to someone's door, or an actual store then 'maybe' it's logical.

Just extremely sad, for everyone down there with the prices. Online distributions costing more, such as Steam, etc has no standing excuse for price hikes.

3 people like this | cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Gone are the days of perpetual licenses which could be used for as long as the owner saw fit.

Gone are the days of temptation to purchase their software.

Good luck adobe as you migrate away form the "Average Joe" like myself.

2 people like this | PCNP543 PCNP543 said:

Wow, I'm so glad I bought CS6 Master collection last year. Yea, it was a chunk of money, but I'll have access to the applications almost indefinitely (until they're not supported on whatever version of Windows is around in 15+ years). I just don't like the idea of all the content I create being essentially locked as soon as I stop a subscription to a suite of programs. In other words, I'd need to pay a subscription just to maintain access to work I've created with a particular program.

At least when I'm finally forced into a subscription, I'll have CS 6 to fall back on if I decide not to maintain the endless access fees.

JC713 JC713 said:

This is good for casual users, but bad for power users. I guess it helps to eliminate fragmentation and promote newer, more feature-filled, and better performing software. I wish they could have killed Flash and Flash Catalyst instead of Fireworks. The good thing about this is less piracy and more money in their pockets.

2 people like this | Guest said:

As an event phtographer, I see problems with subscription services. I've already switched to other software (Darkroom, Corel).

bryan19kc bryan19kc said:

Considering that I'm only an occasional user of Photoshop and Dreamweaver, Adobe has lost my business. I will use my older versions until they are not supported by Windows. Currently, my older versions work fine on Windows 8 and after that. I'm done with Adobe.

m4a4 m4a4 said:

"We want more control to get more money" is all I could see while reading that. They hope that moving to the cloud will force people to buy their expensive software instead of pirate it (as the cloud will undoubtedly complicate things).

It's a good thing that I don't personally care to have the latest and greatest of the adobe suite...

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

Gone are the days of temptation to purchase their software.

Good luck adobe as you migrate away form the "Average Joe" like myself.

I can't image the average joe paying $1200 (or $700 for the upgrade) so I don't understand your argument.

Guest said:

Bye Adobe, welcome The Gimp.

Arionic Arionic said:

There will be a crack or patch released that will eventually halt contact with the cloud or create a fake connection for the program to connect to for authentication. This in no way will stop pirating. Any offline version will most likely arise.

Greed is pathetic.

spydercanopus spydercanopus said:

Adobe needs a tablet oriented version of Photoshop.

Ranger12 Ranger12 said:

Greed is pathetic.

If by "greed" you mean stealing products from companies and employees who invest millions of dollars and thousands of man-hours into making their product, then yes, that is pathetic.

Hopefully I just misunderstood your post and you don't actually think that greed is expecting someone to pay for the product they use.

TS-56336 TS-56336 said:

Glad I am using Corel although they won't be far behind no doubt.

So those of us who don't need to upgrade every version are screwed. Lets hope it comes back to bite them on the arse.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Adobe needs a tablet oriented version of Photoshop.

It's already here, and getting better.

Tutac said:

They could at least make the photoshop elements stay the way it was. (It costs only about 100$!!) I mean common, as a student do I really have to be constantly online when I want to work on a picture or two now and then ??

1 person liked this | WillemVanVliet WillemVanVliet said:

I think it is a mistake, at least when piracy is one of the concerns.

The Adobe Suite, like most many other professional creative software, is build on the fact that it is massively pirated.

If the vast amount of teenagers and students didn't pirate and use Photoshop for example, I doubt it would have went to be the worlds most use image processing program.

Rarely newcomers to the design market would be able to state any of the CS programs on their portfolio.

I'm working at a small startup studio that develops games for Android and iOS.

I wouldn't be here if I wouldn't be able to learn to use Adobe software (Autodesk the same) since I was about 12.

I'm quite sure this counts for most people who use it professionally (and legal) today.

However, the more used the software is, the less likely the maker can prevent piracy of it.

MDSchneider MDSchneider said:

Well this is bad news for power users. For people with a focus on using fireworks in conjunction with photoshop or layouting websites and larger UI design projects, www.antetype.com is becoming more and more of an alternative.

dennis777 dennis777 said:

Too bad that Fireworks is gone (or receiving no more features, and relevant updates which is the same) it was my all-time favorite image editing software.

you got it right sir!

Guest said:

Fireworks is an amazing program.

If Adobe does cut it, I will never support them again!

I'm a Web designer, I NEED Fireworks to make my living!

Thanks Adobe for sucking EVEN MORE!

I hope they see these posts a lot of people are unhappy about this news

Guest said:

Good luck with that Adobe ;) It's like being forced to rent your house with no option to buy one whether you can afford it or not. A very poor investment. Great news for adobe's competitors though. (y)

mailpup mailpup said:

I hope they see these posts a lot of people are unhappy about this news
Instead of just hoping Adobe will see it, you could email them, express your opinion and perhaps link them to it. Just a thought.

2 people like this | Guest said:

Just another example of what the Cloud is all about. Total control over the customer and perpetual payment or else! This is the future!!

Here's a good example of just how backward this concept is for the consumer. I installed Office Home and Business 2013 for a client last week. In the old days, he would have purchased an installation disc, popped it in the drive and within 10-15 minutes max would have been up and running.

Instead, the man paid for a box of fresh air online. It got delivered to his home. I then had to create a Microsoft account for him before I could "download" the software (so now he is no longer anonymous to Microsoft). I was the "allowed" to download the software. After 10 minutes, it became blatantly obvious that his less than 2Mbps Internet speed was going to hold up the proceedings!

I explained that I had another job to go to and would leave it downloading. I returned 2.5 hours later and the damned thing was still sorting itself out!

So to sum up:

The "software" was purchased via a distributor but the client had to go back to Microsoft to download. Where's the logic?

Production costs minus disc must have been halved but the price of office has risen, Why?

You can no longer be anonymous when purchasing software!

The install took over 4 hours!

The client could buy a "back up" disc and pay extra! What?

I am horrified with the way the software market is heading. Is anyone else?

These corporations are laughing at us! Some form of legislation needs to be introduced with regards to cloud computing and fast. The vendor is calling all the shots and "ownership" of products seems to be very questionable.

This is the future? The future is changeable so let's change it before we get completely stuck in this mire!!

Guest said:

I'm absolutely disgusted by what's going on as much as you, but let's be clear about one thing: even in the good ol' days, you didn't own jack. Ownership has always resided with the company, you were (and are) only licensed to use the product.

Puiu Puiu said:

They could at least make the photoshop elements stay the way it was. (It costs only about 100$!!) I mean common, as a student do I really have to be constantly online when I want to work on a picture or two now and then ??

it's not always online you know? :P

Puiu Puiu said:

Fireworks is an amazing program.

If Adobe does cut it, I will never support them again!

I'm a Web designer, I NEED Fireworks to make my living!

Thanks Adobe for sucking EVEN MORE!

I hope they see these posts a lot of people are unhappy about this news

they did say that they will keep selling the current version with bugs and OS updates. what do you want more?

eSolutionsGirl eSolutionsGirl said:

What about the Adobe users who do not have internet access? Granted, there probably aren't a lot of those, but has Adobe created a way for these folks to remain Adobe customers?

Ranger12 Ranger12 said:

These corporations are laughing at us! Some form of legislation needs to be introduced with regards to cloud computing and fast. The vendor is calling all the shots and "ownership" of products seems to be very questionable.

This is the future? The future is changeable so let's change it before we get completely stuck in this mire!!

I admire your desire to change what's going on. However, jumping immediately to legislation is a very bad idea. Eventually the government will be (if not already) the bad guy and there will be no passing legislation to magically fix it.

We have the purchasing power. We vote with our dollars. If you we don't buy from Adobe their sales will go down and they'll see the light. It's the way the market works.

Guest said:

Firworks went the way of all Macromedia Software. When Adobe bought Macromedia, Fontographer was DEAD, Fireworks and Dreamweaver survived... till now.

nazartp said:

I'll keep my CS5 license as long as it supports my needs, otherwise good bye Adobe CS. Lightroom will serve me to a certain extent, for work with layers hello Gimp.

I really do not see any benefit of subscription for any group of users. If I'm a relatively casual user, I.e., Elements is not enough, but I do not use PS every day, there is really no benefit in using subscription model. Each suite has quite a learning curve and I will not be willing to subscribe for a month to spend half of it relearning things and then editing a couple of projects. If I'm a pro, I'd like to have ability to have access to my prior work even if I moved on to other applications. Dumb move.

They also potentially just cut out the whole group of educational users - my son bought the CS suite with his student discount and used it for both photo and film editing. The thing is about three years old and there's still no need to upgrade. With the subscription model he would have gone with the open source software.

axiomatic13 axiomatic13 said:

In general Photoshop is better than Fireworks... except for one thing. TEXT. Fireworks offered far better tools for text than Photoshop does. I hope Adobe plans to up the game Photoshop does regarding text. Sure Illustrator... but sometimes working in two tools is unwieldy for fast jobs.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

They could at least make the photoshop elements stay the way it was. (It costs only about 100$!!) I mean common, as a student do I really have to be constantly online when I want to work on a picture or two now and then ??
Photoshop Elements isn't part of the "Creative Suite", and never has been.

So are we sure they're not going to offer that and "Premier Elements" over the counter on DVD? After all, Adobe leaves so many bugs in the Elements organizer, you have to believe they're pushing you to "Lightroom" anyway. It's a cash cow for them, and its hard core, extremist followers, hang on every new feature miscode and added bloat that Adobe can pay offshore substandard labor to pack into it....

If you'll excuse me, I have to dash off and post an "I told you so a******s", at the Adobe forums. (Someone there told me this couldn't happen)...:p

And BTW, those of you who are crying about the subscription cost, I'm sure Adobe will implement a payroll deduction option, so you'll never really miss the money.

If you never see it, you never miss it, or so they say. But think about it, isn't that how all taxes work?

Guest said:

I've starting to teach myself drawing / sketching and been on the fence as to go Corel Painter, or Adobe Illustrator / Photoshop once I get closer to the analog to digital jump... Since I like to own the software I purchase, Adobe just lost a future customer.

Guest said:

Bye Adobe, welcome The Gimp.

Speak for yourself. GIMP is a joke since it can't match Photoshop when it comes to high-end retouching and manipulation. Any professional artist worth his salt will agree with me on this.

NTAPRO NTAPRO said:

I wonder what this will do for the student software stores. Might just continue selling the latest version before it I'd guess.

1 person liked this | spydercanopus spydercanopus said:

It's already here, and getting better.

Well punch my neck and call me donkey. I wonder why this isn't advertised as part of their Creative Cloud suite? It never showed up when I was searching "tablet" on their website.

Rasta211 said:

I bet they are going to charge an "access fee".

1 person liked this | cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

LOL All that rage and then at the end "Sign us up".

1 person liked this | Guest said:

This must be okay for people with loads of disposable income. It's one thing to bite the bullet and buy CS but at least you buy it and are done with it and can use it for years before needing to upgrade. Now you have to pay continuously or else lose all. So no matter if you have paid thousands to Adobe, you still can lose everything if you miss a payment. Artists are typically underpaid and underemployed anyway... it wouldn't be an uncommon scenario for one to be between jobs and looking to do freelance work. This also kills it for the hobbyist who may not use CS to directly make money... I don't think many want to pay monthly for something they may or may not use and don't think they want their past work tied into it. Anyway, that's just the way I look at it as someone who is a hobbyist and small time graphic designer who barely makes any money to save let alone spend on yet another monthly bill. Also, let's not forget this also implies you have full time internet access. It's one thing to activate the software one time, but now you need monthly net access whereas before you didn't... so the price goes up to now over $100 a month. I've been thinking about a new career and a new hobby anyway.

Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I agree Guest. I'll be sticking to CS6 as long as I possibly can. It does everything I need for it to do (for now anyway). It will probably be a few years before I even consider making the switch. By then, who knows what Adobe will do.

Duskywolf50 said:

Know what? When you purchased something expensive without any disc or files is risky business. No thank to cloud cause they can take from you. I pass.

Guest said:

It is my understanding that you will always have access to any file you have created in the subscription software - you just will not be allowed to create any NEW files or documents. You will not be locked out of your files and you can continue to use the software version you have installed on your machine. If you cancel your subscription the software will still be installed on your machine. I am going to research it a bit more.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

It is my understanding that you will always have access to any file you have created in the subscription software - you just will not be allowed to create any NEW files or documents. You will not be locked out of your files and you can continue to use the software version you have installed on your machine. If you cancel your subscription the software will still be installed on your machine. I am going to research it a bit more.
The software still requires Adobe's activation servers from time to time. I believe it's a 6 month mandatory check in. So, the software may be installed but likely will be made dormant. If you want to investigate further, by all means. Go to this Adobe forum, and see how many happy campers are over there: http://forums.adobe.com/community/photoshop

And simply because I'm the nice person I am, here's a few threads to get you started: http://forums.adobe.com/message/5343563#5343563 http://forums.adobe.com/message/5341613#5341613 http://forums.adobe.com/message/5341495#5341495

on your journey to rental "Nirvana"...:oops:

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.