Adobe Max 2019: Make or break for Lightroom (cloud)

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  • Updated 9 months ago
In two weeks Adobe will hold their annual conference Adobe Max. Two years ago at the same conference, Lightroom (cloud) was launched. I really want to believe in this product and theoretically it could solve many of my problems and challenges but in practice it doesn't. And this is due to a complete failure by Adobe to listen to its customers (recurring theme, because otherwise the application wouldn't have gone to numerous ridiculous rebranding exercises that are still confusing people up to today... see Amazon book reviews or this very forum for what I mean).

Ever since, I have been waiting for Lightroom to become a usable product but barely anything changed with just incremental updates. Although the core of the application is amazing (syncing, Sensei, image editing) it is seriously hampered by the lack of anything else that makes it impossible to build a photographer respecting workflow. 

Some examples:
  • No serious export options (JPEG without any settings or adjustments, no TIFF!)
  • No "edit with"/"open in" menu besides Photoshop
  • No color labels rendering many workflows useless (and no, a keyword is no alternative. If so, then why offer pick flags and or number ratings, they can also be added as a keyword)
  • No smart collections
  • No search operators (e.g. NOT keyword or keyword 1 AND keyword 2)
  • No virtual copies (which I am expect do exist in the back-end since any self-respecting cloud company won't store the same data twice)
This is just the tip of the iceberg from a very long list of missing features. For two years, customers have been begging Adobe to implement these features but we only get small incremental features that doesn't solve any of the more serious problems. If I cannot export a high quality TIFF of my work, what is the point of putting any work in your photos within the application? I don't like my work to be locked in to a subscription. The result is that an outdated application is still being updated while on its lasts, and a fantastic new product is not living up to its promise due to a lack of love and focus. Apple went trough the same process with Final Cut Pro -> Final Cut Pro X but unlike Adobe they made the new application useful within a year or so and kept updating it at rapid pace and they didn't charge us monthly for doing so. It launched in 2011 and we are now in 2019 and I am still receiving free updates to my initial $299 investment. Now that's what I call customer service!

TLDR; will the 2-year anniversary of this application finally see Adobe listening to its customers and make the product useful for the many and not the few with a big monster update, or will they keep ignoring us like they have for two years (just go trough this form and see the feature requests, how old these threads are, and how Adobe hasn't said a word about any of them)? If the latter, I will give up on Lightroom for good since I am tired of waiting without any roadmap or clarity while paying a monthly fee (which I recently stopped doing in lieu of any updates). This would be a pity since I believe in this vision and that Adobe is well positioned to realise it but that won't take me or many other customers anywhere with poor execution. 

Enough is enough. Time to take your customers serious and deliver!

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Floris van Eck

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  • tired of waiting

Posted 9 months ago

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