Creative Cloud subscription service launched by Adobe

LOS ANGELES – Adobe Inc.‘s (NASDAQ: ADBE) Creative Cloud is a subscription service that provides a combination of cloud storage and collaboration services to allow easier content collaboration and sharing on any device, in any place.

At the company’s annual Adobe Max conference, CTO Kevin Lynch said the new services are changing the way Adobe can utilize its software. It “really represents the confluence of new trends in the industry.”

In addition to allowing easier collaboration between Adobe’s desktop suite and its newly announced tablet applications, Creative Cloud also offers a new community for Adobe users. Every user gets a profile page to help share their projects and provide inspiration to other creators. Content can be filtered by colour, font use and a myriad of other style elements.

Info-Tech Research Group Ltd. analyst Tim Hickernell said Creative Cloud shows development upon Adobe’s cloud strategy, even though it’s not the first venture it has made into the technology.

“It’s certainly an evolution of existing cloud strategy and cloud products and they’re pulling more and more things together.” he said. “They’ve dabbled in some of the consumer things like Photoshop Online for example, but these are non-tablet, non-touch cloud things. So, Adobe has been in the cloud, both in consumer and in business for some time, but I think clearly what this is aimed at is pulling all the strategies together to have a mobile and touch interface cloud strategy with all applications that are touch applications instead of cloud strategies to a PC or desktop which they’ve had for a while.”

The new tablet apps, including a portable version of Adobe’s marquee app, Photoshop, have put an emphasis on bringing together all kinds of creative types. Proto allows customers to mock up websites quickly using gesture controls, which, using Creative Cloud, can then be imported into Dreamweaver to give a head start to the actual coding. All of the elements – divs, buttons, headers and videos – are present in blank forms, allowing website development to skip a few development steps.

Hickernell said that the Creative Cloud actually bears a striking similarity to other market leading subscription models in its offerings. With Creative Cloud, “its subscription to the services, the new cloud-only apps and ‘oh, by the way, we’ll let you download the physical apps.’ It’s really like an Office 365 when you think about it. Microsoft offers Office Pro Plus. You download it, it’s not SaaS, you download it but you get subscription licensing with Office 365.”

In addition to the collaborative elements, Creative Cloud will also interface with Adobe’s new business layer apps for distribution. Adobe Digital Publishing Suite can take projects that are designed and stored in the Creative Cloud and allow them to be easily released as tablet published documents with very little coding know-how.

Pricing for Creative Cloud will be announced in November.

Follow JD Speedy on Twitter: @jamesspeedy.

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