Back in 2012, Google purchased German company Nik Software, the firm behind a series of photo editing plug-ins designed for amateur and professional photographers. The acquisition was primarily so Google could get its hands on popular photo app Snapseed, but the company also reduced the cost of Nik's collection of seven plug-ins from $499 to $149. Now, the price has dropped even more, right down to zero.
The collection includes Analog Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro, Viveza, HDR Efex Pro, Sharpener Pro and Dfine. It's free to download for Windows and Mac, and provides “a powerful range of photo editing capabilities — from filter applications that improve color correction, to retouching and creative effects, to image sharpening that brings out all the hidden details, to the ability to make adjustments to the color and tonality of images,” according to a statement from Google.
Anyone who purchased the Nik Collection in 2016 will automatically receive a full refund in the coming days, presumably via the same method used to buy it. Sadly, anyone who bought the suite in 2015 or earlier won’t be getting their money back, which is pretty upsetting for those who paid $149 just four months ago.
“We’re excited to bring the powerful photo editing tools once only used by professionals to even more people now,” said Google.
The company does say in its Google+ post that it is continuing to focus on building photo editing tools like Snapseed and Google Photos for mobile, so there’s a chance that the Nik Collection may stop receiving support and updates now it’s free. You can download Google Nik Collection for free here.