Idea: Ask Adobe to reconsider their new Creative Suite upgrade/pricing policies

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  • Idea
  • Updated 7 years ago
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  • (Edited)
Just a couple days ago Adobe revealed on their blog their new pricing policy that will only allow discounted prices on upgrades for CS6 for only those that hold CS5. Here is the quote from that blog:

"For customers who prefer to remain on the current licensing model, we will continue to offer our individual point products and Adobe Creative Suite editions as perpetual licenses. With regards to upgrades, we are changing our policy for perpetual license customers. In order to qualify for upgrade pricing when CS6 releases, customers will need to be on the latest version of our software (either CS5 or CS5.5 editions). If our customers are not yet on those versions, we’re offering a 20% discount through December 31, 2011 which will qualify them for upgrade pricing when we release CS6".

Here is the link to that Adobe blog: http://blogs.adobe.com/conversations/...

I believe that there are many Adobe CS users that will not be able to afford the subscription model, nor an upgrade with each cycle. I would encourage Adobe to consider alternatives such as tiered pricing based on users on older versions of CS.

I encourage all others to post their thoughts on this new pricing policy as well. Adobe will listen yet only if enough customers provide feedback.
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John K Wheeler

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Posted 7 years ago

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Craig Reavis

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I, too, am in agreement with John on this topic. I have made the statement in another forum (NAPP) that if some type of change in this new pricing policy is not made, I will no longer be able to update my my CS5 if I miss the CS6 edition. I WILL NOT pay for a full price program again to get CS7 or any other update. And I will never be part of any subscription plan. Adobe has lost sight of its customers who have been so loyal to them. I'm afraid that this loyalty will slip away and Adobe will go the way of Netflix.
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Howard Pinsky, Champion

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I believe, with the addition of Adobe's payment plans (monthly payment options), upgrading each year isn't too bad anymore. I don't mind the change now that the payment options are in place.
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Jason Anderson

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It’s not often I get on a soap box and encourage people to take an active stance against something, but this is just a bad move on the part of Adobe. There are a couple ways you can reach out to Adobe and let them know your thoughts. One NAPP member has started a thread in the Adobe community forums (and from what I gather, they do listen there...), and when one of the senior VP’s at Adobe (Bryan O’Neal Hughes) wrote a guest post on Scott Kelby’s blog, he shared his email address: bhughes@adobe.com. I would encourage you all to use both methods to communicate with Adobe how much you oppose this policy change.
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christoph pfaffenbichler, Champion

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What a neat example of marketing language: »Adobe Creative Cloud and Adobe Creative Suite: New Choices for Customers« seems to translate to »We have just abolished the policy that our customers have been accustomed to and content with for years and years.«
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edward.caruso

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I will never subscribe to a software package.
Changing the upgrade requirements is a bad move.
If enough customers complain maybe they will revise their decision.
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Stewart Hunt

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I don't believe Adobe is going down this road. I will not pay a subscription fee for any Software (except antivirus of course) and the change in Upgrade Policy is simply a kick in the face to their customers (except of course the ones that upgrade every single time). I am very disappointed with Adobe. It is like they are trying to blackmail their customers into upgrading every time. Do they not understand that users of their previous versions are also promoting the Software and the Company.

Not happy Adobe.
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John K Wheeler

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Well I know for sure of one spectacular thing that will be in CS6 if you upgrade.................... the ability to upgrade to CS7 at a lower cost than full price which is what you will pay if you stick with CS5 and then upgrade to CS7 :). Sorry, just practicing for a marketing job at Adobe :D

And kudos to those that are adding their posts providing customer feedback directly to Adobe.

Adobe certainly is making a strategic move with this pricing change. They are doing their best to pave a smoother path for those of previous revisions to upgrade to CS5 at a discounted price now. Whether this is overall a good strategic move for Adobe only time will tell. What I do know is based on this forum and discussions on about 5 other forums and personal contacts, (and what Adobe may not have intended) "is" that Adobe's move has triggered many small businesses to do some strategic rethinking on their Adobe investments. Alternative software may not be good enough for many of Adobe's customers. These customers are not just looking at alternatives. They are also looking at scaling back on the number of "seats" (licenses purchased) and purchasing fewer suites and just getting individual products where needed. Actually, for cost efficiency, these measures probably should have been done anyways. Adobe's move just brought it to a head. Adobe's new strategy may also create a vacuum for some customers that don't come along for the ride. Nature (and business) abhors a vacuum. If the vacuum is large enough it will motivate ways to fill the hole. We shall see.
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Philip Goddard

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Well, well, well! This user-hostile move of Adobe is all the more reason for me not to bother to 'upgrade' from Photoshop Elements to Photoshop, which was far beyond my means anyway! - And indeed all the more reason for me to keep monitoring the development of competing software from sources that show more respect and consideration for their users and prospective users, with the aim eventually to get completely clear of Adobe.
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Matthew O Brien

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Photoshop Licensing.

I could not find an alternative means to communicate with Adobe. Please pass on to the appropriate channel.

I was just about to purchase a full copy of Indesign. I have been a long term user of Photoshop and Lightroom and to-date I have purchased every update.

I was just about to purchase In Design. Because of the recent change by Adobe on their upgrade policy I have deferred / reversed this decision.

When the new version of Photoshop is announced I may or may not upgrade. It will need killer new features for me to upgrade. I know at some point in the future I will not purchase an upgrade. When that happens I will never re-purchase a license for Photoshop.

I am now nervous of investing in other Adobe licenses, as I am afraid that the same rules will apply.

So, at best Adobe have substantially deferred revenue from me. A more likely scenario is that Adobe may never get any more revenue from me.

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Photoshop Licensing..
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Robert Sinkus

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Edward Jemas

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I am sadden to hear about your new upgrade policy. I am a very small business (1person) that supplements my retirement income using Photoshop. I have been a long time user and currently use CS5 extended. Your new policy of upgrading photoshop every year will force me to either quit what I am doing or find alternative software. Sadly you seem to be more concerned with generating more profits over the needs of your customers.

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
more concerned with profits then their customers.
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Jerry Coffin

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I can summarize my position very simply.

I have spent thousands of dollars on Adobe products for a couple of decades now.

If this policy goes into effect, I will never spend another cent on any Adobe product or service again. To the extent that I have any influence on anybody else, I will do my best to persuade them to do the same.

In my opinion, this would an inexcusable step under any circumstances. Taking such a step when the economy is in such poor shape, and many (most?) are short of money to do immediate upgrades adds insult to injury.
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Kevin Wildermuth

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I just learned about the new upgrade policy for the CS Suite. If you sent me an announcement I didn't get it, or it looked like a come-on for an upgrade so I ignored it. This upgrade policy and the way it is being rolled out regarding the timing (so late in the CS 5.5 cycle) has me questioning nearly 20 years of loyalty to your products.

Surely you have heard that there's a recession, which for many of us is being experienced as a depression. My business is down 70% with no assurance it won't get worse. Surely you've heard of the problem Netflix caused themselves, or Bank of America.

Many of us have skipped versions to mitigate the large upgrade fees. Believe me, I'd rather use the current version, but my business does not warrant the upgrade fees that you've been charging. I'm just not able to squeeze my remaining clients for the money to support those fees. Surely you know that not all of your users are rich corporations or wildly successful freelancers.

When Microsoft achieved their monopoly I refused to use their products, now you are abusing your market position and I will look into other options. I've been an advocate for your software for years, but unless you rethink this underhanded strategy I will discourage people from using your software and enlighten them about the alternatives.

I post this with due respect for your products and the loyalty that you earned so far. But I feel that you are now abusing that loyalty and respect, which I think is a mistake on your part. You seem to have made your calculation, but I am concerned that unintended consequences will be your ruin. Netflix and
Bak of America had the good sense to see that they had pushed their customers too far and walk things back. I hope that you do the same. At the very least adjust your announcement so that this policy starts after we have had a chance to upgrade to CS6.

With respect, Kevin

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Egregious upgrade policy change.
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paul archer

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My perspective as an individual for whom photography is a hobby (my primary, lifelong hobby, but just a hobby, nonetheless): I could afford the latest version of Photoshop (in the sense that I could budget for it, save for a few months, and then be able to buy it), but there is no way that I can justify it. Especially when I own an older copy (CS2) and it does 99% of what I need.

The bottom line is that Photoshop is too damn expensive in general. I know of no other software package that an individual would buy that costs as much. Sure, there's more expensive software out there (go price Oracle Enterprise Edition if you want some serious sticker shock), but nothing that a single person who may not even be deriving income from it would buy. (And even Oracle will give you a *free* single-seat license for Oracle Standard Edition for non-commercial use.)

I can tell you why Adobe is pushing the subscription model: piracy. I'm pretty sure Photoshop is some of the most pirated software out there.

Now, don't get me wrong on one thing: I believe if you make something, you have the right to charge for it. And you should have the right to set the price. But with software, the incremental cost is negligible. So you can either charge a lot and have relatively few customers, or you can charge less and get more customers. I think Adobe is going the wrong way by charging more. Charge less, Adobe, and many of those people who are using pirated copied *because they can't afford the expense* will be able to buy copies and put more money in your pocket in the long run.
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Judy Dickerson

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I have been a loyal Adobe customer for many years, having purchased Adobe PhotoShop Elements and then on to PhotoShop CS2, CS3 and CS4. PhotoShop CS5 was the only version that I haven’t upgraded to. I also have and use LightRoom. I’ve been waiting for PhotoShop CS6 to be released so that I could upgrade. I was also looking forward to upgrading to LightRoom Version 4.

I’ve heard recently that Adobe will not be allowing customers who haven’t purchased CS5 to upgrade to CS6!!! Is this true??? If so, I am outraged!!!! It appears people will be required to buy CS5 before they are allowed to upgrade to CS6!!!

My fellow photographers and I have often joked about “making our annual donation to Adobe” since you have frequent upgrades and that it is intensely profitable for you. I have put up with it before, but no longer! We all like to have the latest and greatest technology, but there are limits to our willingness to be gouged and taken advantage of.

I’ve been thinking a lot about PhotoShop CS4, which is my current version, and I realize that it is powerful enough to do nearly all that I need to do, as I post-process my images. If the rumors mentioned above are true, I want you to know that you have driven away a customer. It won’t be worth it to me to be ripped off in this manner. I will continue my photography with my current versions of PhotoShop and LightRoom.
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Edward Rose

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You have blocked me from accessing the photos already saved on my computer for the past 7 years! Pretty cute, a "pop up" comes up to "Register" what I've already done over 7 years ago and when I go to register you claim the "...time to register this version is gone past" and unless I upgrade to a very expensive Photoshop current version I am now unable to access my existing photos! What manner of Shenanigan's is that!!??
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paul archer

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I'm assuming that you mean that you have images in the Photoshop *.psd format, and that you can't access them through Photoshop because your copy is un-registerable.
FWIW, the open source program GIMP (as well as others) handles photoshop format files pretty well. While I feel your pain that the copy of PS you have you can no longer register/use, you can at least access your files.
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Edward Rose

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I bought this from you 6-7 years ago and I assume it was registered back then. I'm not in the habit of keeping useless documents because back then it wasn't necessary. Now you want me to re-register (which you won't allow me to do after 7 years) NOR allow me to use what I've already paid for unless I buy an upgrade. Do I have this correctly stated?
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Hi Edward,

I'm not quite sure this thread is about the same thing you are concerned about. Are you referring to Photoshop Album Starter Edition? If so, please consult this topic:

http://feedback.photoshop.com/photosh...

You're files are not blocked from use and are still available on your system to open in whatever software you desire.
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David Roberts

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Is it true that CS6 will not follow the path of all other upgrades and not be upgradable from CS3 and CS4 only CS5. I currently use CS3 and will upgrade to CS6 unless you change your policy. As a professional photographer we are your best sales force to promote Photoshop to new users and often tell people to buy Elements and how great your products are. If you do get greedy - if this rumour is true I'm sure CS3 will still be fine for many years to come and I'm afraid you can cross me off your word of mouth salesforce list and lover of Adobe and Photoshop. C1 Pro provides excellent Raw conversion for me and most of the time it's all I need. I will simply go back to the good old days and leave retouching up to the clients as we used to with film. Please tell me this rumour is not true? I would hate to fall out with you before the New Year having been together for so many years.

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Photoshop CS6 Upgrade Rumour?.
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Judy Dickerson

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I agree with David. I bought early versions of Photoshop, the latest being CS2, CS3 and CS4. CS5 was the only version I didn't upgrade to. I was stunned to learn of this new policy. I'm realizing, too, that my CS4 takes care of 99.9% of what I want to do in editing my images. It will be fine for me to stay with CS4 and get off of Adobe's overly greedy gravy train.....one less customer for Adobe.
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David Roberts

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Judy. The link below I feel adds a little perspective on how very important it must be for Adobe to have to have make this change in their upgrade policy. When your first 'quarterly' revenue hits the billions $1.028 billion never sounds quite as impressive as $1028 million in the board room does it? It's just like 1 isn't it. Anyhow enough money not to really worry about our departure eh Judy. Best David.

(anyone reading this please remember to multiply by about 4 for anual revenue - this is just the quarter)

http://www.adobe.com/aboutadobe/press...

If you can't be bothered to click it it starts like this.......

Adobe Reports Record Revenue in Q1 Fiscal 2011
For immediate release

SAN JOSE, Calif. — March 22, 2011 — Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) today reported financial results for its first quarter ended March 4, 2011.

In the first quarter of fiscal 2011, Adobe achieved record revenue of $1.028 billion, compared to $858.7 million reported for the first quarter of fiscal 2010 and $1.008 billion reported in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010. This represents 20 percent year-over-year revenue growth. Adobe’s first quarter revenue target range was $1 billion to $1.05 billion.
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PECourtejoie, Champion

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Hello, we can now be happy, as Adobe has decided to offer a special upgrade price to users of CS3 and CS4.
They will have from the release of CS6 until 31 december 2012 to upgrade to CS6: http://www.adobe.com/products/creativ...
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John K Wheeler

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Thanks PECourtejoie for posting the latest update about special introductory pricing policies. Repeated link: http://www.adobe.com/products/creativ...

Even though it is not specific in the Adobe Link, from other sources this will apply to the standalone Photoshop and not just the Suite products. Also, I have heard that those that have already upgraded to CS5/CS5.5 in the last two months just to get the discount for another quick upgrade to CS6 when released may get a special break. What I heard is that you can get better discounts than those that are still on CS3/CS4 (it was also mentioned that you might have to ask for the special pricing if you did a recent in the last two months - I am sure the smoke will clear on this).

Note that Adobe has not changed their overall upgrade policy strategy as of yet and this "special" (meaning not necessarily to be repeated) is just what they stated - an introductory offer. Adobe's new policy of upgrading one version back still stands as documented on their web site - of course unless their customers complain like they did this time when it comes time for upgrading to CS7.

Unfortunate for Adobe in late recognition of such vehement customer feedback about their new upgrade policy (unlike Verizon's quick move in one day to shut down their proposed convenience fee for $2.00 for single shot bill payments online or over the phone). IMHO Adobe has lost a lot of good will and trust yet in some respects did their customers a service. Customers/businesses that use Adobe products know that they should carefully review their options both with Adobe and outside Adobe. Locked in to one company puts your graphics software purchases at their whim. It's one of the same reasons that many PC manufactures build with both Intel and AMD processor chips. They don't want either company to have a monopoly on a critical component where a supplier would have a stranglehold.

I think Adobe's change in upgrade policies (even with the short term special reprieve) should still be considered a shot over the bow.

And yes I am happy they came to their senses at least momentarily even if it is a one time special. Maybe next time it won't take Adobe two months to recognize a bad decision. Adobe certainly knows and has stated that they can't do well unless their customers do well. Glad they looked up to see "how well" their customers were doing/feeling.

Thanks to all that contacted Adobe to provide feedback about your concerns. It did make a difference.
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Paul Crowder

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Please do the right thing and start this policy with cs version 7. To do this immediately before you release cs version 6 is a very bad PR situation. Scot Kelby has the sensible soluton: pro-rate cs3 and cs4 upgrades and then people will know from now on what you intend to do beginning with version 7. Thank you.
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Hi Paul, did you see that in addition to CS5 users, users of CS3 and CS4 will have an opportunity to upgrade to CS6?:

http://www.adobe.com/products/creativ...
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Paul Crowder

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Your recent change to your upgrade policy is something you should be ashamed of. You wait until you're about to release cs version 6, and then announce that people using cs version 4 will have to upgrade twice withing within 3-4 months, or buy a full version. Please listen to Scot Kelby, and start the new upgrade policy with version 7. Come on Man!

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Upgrade policy for version 6 of cs products.
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Chris Carvalho

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I've been a loyal user since Photoshop 3. I've tended to upgrade at every other major version release, because I haven't seen the value in upgrading at every version. Now we hear that Adobe isn't happy with that, so they want to charge full price if users don't think there's enough features in the product to justify an upgrade. I'm mad as H@ll at that idea. I've spent thousands of dollars on Photoshop, and this is the thanks I get?

Adobe doesn't see the unintended consequences of their action. It might spur more competition to snatch angry users away, and even an open-source movement to spring up.

If Adobe did what was done for Lightroom and offer it at about half the price of the previous version going forward, that might be a good way to ask users to stay on the upgrade treadmill without punishing them unjustifiably if they decide to skip a version. Or, make the time between version upgrades longer and put enough decent improvements in them to make it worth the price.