in Creative Cloud

My Unofficial Creative Cloud FAQ

In my travels lately I’ve noticed that some people don’t fully understand or have never even heard of the Creative Cloud. Now if you are regular reader of my blog then you probably know what’s up, but if there are decision makers in your company or other folks that you want to educate, you can send them here or to the much larger official FAQ. I want to make sure everybody understands how much better of a deal this is than our traditional approach of selling software. Here are the questions that I hear the most:

With the Creative Cloud, am I using new cloud-based versions of software like Photoshop?
Absolutely not. A more appropriate name might be the Adobe Software Subscription with Additional Cloud-Based Services, but that is a bit long. Basically you are paying a monthly fee to get access to all of our regular desktop software in addition to some great services in the cloud.

How often will the applications in the Creative Cloud be updated?
This is the most important advantage of us switching to the subscription model. With the big Creative Suite releases we had to synchronise all of the product updates to a single release date. With the Creative Cloud, all of the applications can update themselves whenever they have new updates to share with you. We are already seeing this happen with the recent updates to Edge Animate, Edge Code, etc. No more waiting for more than a year for an update to your favorite software. With the cloud subscription you are always running the latest versions of all our software.

Besides the desktop software, what else do I get access to with the subscription?
This is where the services come in. I’ll just mention a few of my favorites. First you get full access to the awesome TypeKit web font library. You can easily build your PhoneGap applications in the cloud for all platforms using PhoneGap Build. You get a Digital Publishing Suite Single Edition account allowing you to publish digital magazines from InDesign to tablets like the iPad. You also get cloud storage and sharing features for your creative files including advanced support for Adobe filetypes such as PSD (see video at bottom for more on this). These are just some the services you get and we’ll be continuing to add more.

Is subscribing to the Creative Cloud a better deal than buying a suite?
Absolutely! Even if you only want one of our applications you can get the Single-App membership for $19.99 a month and cancel anytime. The complete subscription costs $49.99 a month, which comes out to around $600 a year. Considering the price of Master Collection is around $3000, it is easy to see the amazing value. This new pricing model also makes getting legal access to our software possible for people in developing countries who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford it. For students, the price for the full subscription is only $19.99 a month. Basically to sum up, if you do anything creative, choosing the Creative Cloud is a no-brainer. Oh and no more worrying about Mac and PC versions of our software. You get to install all of the applications on up to two machines regardless of OS.

What about team subscriptions for my company?
Yes we have a team edition that makes it easy to manage licenses among your team and also includes more cloud storage space. Check out the details here.

Damn Lee, why are you selling this so hard? Are you getting a commission or something?
Unfortunately not :). But I just got back from a team offsite and we were sitting around drinking beers and wondering why anyone wouldn’t go the cloud route. I don’t want any of you guys to buy a suite and regret it because you didn’t understand what the Creative Cloud actually is.

I don’t like change. Can’t I just buy the software like I always have?
Yes of course. You can still buy suites and individual applications if you want. But you should register for the free Creative Cloud account because that is where you can get trial versions, preview release software, and some limited access to some of the services.

What are you not telling me Lee?
Well the Creative Cloud isn’t available in every country yet but we are continuing to expand. Check out the official FAQ for availability. There are also a couple of apps not in the Creative Cloud yet such as Director. Got feedback or concerns? Please leave it for us in the comments.

Need more convincing? Check out the video below from P-Train explaining more about the Creative Cloud.

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  1. This page says that I can buy Creative Cloud in Russia:

    But when I actually try to buy it, I’m told this:

    Creative Cloud Membership isn’t currently offered in your country or region, but if you like, we can notify you when it becomes available. If you no longer live in this country or region, login to update your account or create a new Adobe ID for your current country of residence. For a list of countries in which Creative Cloud is available, please visit our Tech specs and Language availability page.

  2. At my company we bought 20 Master CS6 in june because creative cloud was available only as individual license. In september CC became available for companies…
    With our very expensive Master CS6 we ain’t got DPS single license nor Typekit…
    From my point of view it’s a shame, Adobe should have given us access to the CC services because we, the companies, are Adobe’s best buyers. So… we are starting to try alternative solutions (Pixelmator, Aquafadas, etc).
    Nothing against you Lee :-)

  3. I couldn’t agree more with you. I worked out that it would take around 5 years of CC to pay of the CS6 master collection. In 5 years with CC you will have the latest versions of the software, but with master collection you will have 5 year old software and are probably wanting to upgrade again!

  4. All very good points. I’m not sure why web developers and students don’t take advantage of the subscription more. $20/month for thousands of dollars worth of software is a steal, and like Ben said, you always get free updates and never have to upgrade. Why bother getting the software?

  5. I think that you guys should tout the fact that you can install the software on up to 2 different computers a bit more. Thats a HUGE advantage.

    • This is seriously the only thing I can say sucks about Creative Cloud. Why is THAT app not available? It’s the only app I need where I work (we’re still very ok with our CS4 suites), but had to get the full membership since I need Flash Builder 4.7.

      That’s the only thing stopping me from registering (for home). I am not paying 50$ a month for ONE software.

  6. Hey Lee,

    I currently have CS 5.5 Master Suite, I’ve been giving serious thought to migrating over to Creative Cloud – my main concern is; if I subscribe instead of upgrade – what happens if for whatever reason down the road I have to drop my subscription? Do I lose everything and then just revert back to CS 5.5. Not sure of exact figures; but I think 10 – 12 months of subscription is on the order of the same money as the upgrade; *except* – once I lay out that money I own the software. Any thoughts or clarifications? Any plans from Adobe on subscribers earning ‘equity’ in the apps they are subscribing to; so for example if they get laid off and have to cut back they aren’t without the software they need to land the next gig? Also – as someone who has owned one version or another of CS since CS2 – it’s a little rough that some of the online services are reserved for subscribers. Especially if you’re at the Master Collection level of investment.

  7. This works like any other subscription service though, right? If I stop paying for it, for whatever reason, then no more Adobe software. Something to keep in mind if the person paying for the subscription stops paying for it (i.e. you are no longer employed, or cannot afford to continue paying).

    From a business or decision-maker perspective though, it really is a no-brainer. I think showing how the math works out would help more. For example, I had to multiply out the monthly totals myself and compare with the full Creative Suite. Why isn’t there a calculator or chart showing this data already broken down?

  8. I want to be able to buy Creative Cloud for individuals, but it’s just the Creative Cloud for teams that’s available here in India. Would it be possible for a friend of mine in the US to purchase the relevant Creative Cloud subscription there, and for me to use it from here in India?

    • I’m also trying to work this out. I’m likely to spend prolonged periods in 6 countries over the next year. Only 3 are on the list of countries that where Creative Cloud is available.

      I don’t really want to but the subs in the UK/Hungary/etc. and then be told 30 days later “your subscription cannot be validated from India/Thailand/wherever, go to another country if you want to keep working”.

      The question was asked a year ago on Adobe’s forums, and Adobe never gave an answer. So if anyone actually knows, that would be handy.

  9. Lee, you’ve lost all credibility. I remember a “Lee” ranting all over the net because some bitten fruit wasn’t installing Flash. Now that Adobe is forcing users into the cloud to rent not to own their software well then you seem to be all for it. Hypocrite ! I Own the master suite and loyal to Adobe for over 17yrs.i upgrade at my choosing every two if not three years thus my yearly expense avg around 184.00 /year not $600… Stop blowing smoke up everyone’s ass tell adobe to give us the choice . It’s all greed . Read the meeting of adobe execs on wall St. The move was done just in crease revenue to 200million/month….next time you become an adobe whore make sure you get paid first

  10. Our company would like to use CC for Teams due to the multi licensing tools. But we only need Photoshop. Unfortunately Adobe doesn’t sell single app licenses in CC for teams. If we buy the whole pack, we are charged 96.- Swiss Francs. For a 5 year period that’s about more then double the costs we had until now with our TLP licenses.

    I guess you have no clue why Adobe doesn’t sell single apps in CC4T?

    • I agree, it’s incredibly poor that Adobe won’t do Team purchases for single apps. We have 20 users running Illustrator and Adobe Customer Service suggested I set up 20 separate accounts! They state:

      “Its been decided by our marketing department, we just need to follow there leads.”

      Talk about not supporting the enterprise!!