Lightroom: There needs to be a perpetual license option for enthusiast photographers

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In my opinion, Adobe have given up the amateur enthusiast photographer customer segment. The amount of marketing doublespeak required to "justify" Adobe's decisions points to its major flaws: Adobe promised (https://blogs.adobe.com/.../lightroom-and-the-creative-cloud....) to keep offering a perpetual license in future versions, thereby influencing buyer decision for Lightroom 6. Then they made it very hard to actually buy the perpetual license version of LR 6, and now they argue that buyers were deliberately choosing the CC version. I believe a significant number of LR users are in the same segment as me: Amateur enthusiast photographers who need a photo management and RAW developer tool, but do not use it on more than one or two devices. For those users, the choice of the perpetual license made the most sense. I am unwilling to pay a monthly amount which will add up the normal upgrade price in under a year, unless it provides me with significant advantages. So, about those advantages... Adobe argued that the 2015 CC version would regularly get new features, which would have been an incentive to choose it over the standalone LR 6 version. Looking at the list of features that have been added to LR 2015 CC, I must say that it's neither long nor that impressive. It certainly does not point to continuous development of the CC version. It would certainly haven't justified the higher cost for LR 2015 CC for me. Nevertheless, Adobe might argue that the new Classic CC version is the right choice for me, as it offers new features and performance improvements. Let's see... The Classic CC version offers some badly needed performance improvements - finally, one might say. However, those are limited to a few specific functions. If Adobe were really serious about LR's performance, they should have really worked on that in LR 5 and 6. Adobe also promise that they will continue to support and develop LR Classic CC. Just as they promised to offer a perpetual version? Honestly: As the development effort seems to have gone mostly towards the new cloud version, visible in the fact that the new LR Classic CC does not really offer that many new or improved features, how likely is it that LR Classic CC is a good choice for the next few years? Well, Adobe might say, if you want the latest and greatest, get the new CC version! Apart from the very unfortunate and confusing choice of product name, the cloud version is not even feature-complete when compared to the classic version, as I understand it. It offers cloud support, though - but I really don't need that as an amateur. Even some professionals seem to balk at the cloud-centric design. So why would I choose a less powerful, but more expensive version? To summarize: Adobe's past behaviour indicates that they can neither be trusted to support the classic CC version long enough nor that choosing the new, much more expensive cloud version will offer true benefits for amateur enthusiast photographers. The most rational choice for me seems to keep using LR 6 with the perpetual license for as long as it is viable, while researching other options for my next toolset.
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John Doe

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Posted 9 months ago

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Michel DELFELD

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So! Very interesting considerations. I couldn't expresse my thought peter than you. 
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Dave Pearce

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Im not sure i understand the last bit. The cloud version isnt more expensive than the Classic version. Both are included with the 20GB cloud package, and the 1TB package that doesn't have Classic is the same cost. Its only the package that has both versions and 1TB that cost more.
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John Doe

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I mean more expensive compared to the perpetual license. A LR version upgrade was usually around 70 Euros. The minimum monthly subscription price is 11,89 €.
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Dave Pearce

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Ah, this is where the confusion crept in. Classic has never been a perpetual version as such, but i understand what you mean.
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Thomas Fuglseth

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I was going to write a thread on the subject, but instead I'll just throw my proverbial two cents behind this one.

I have absolutely no need for Photoshop. I post process photos, I never have a need for photo editing, and I don't have the patience to learn it either. So for me, renting access to software I'm never going to need just to get access to the one program I want to use is a waste of money.

I am not interested in cloud storage. It's just something I have no need of. Local storage on my PC + backup on an external file server does the job.

All in all, there is absolutely nothing of added value in Adobe's cloud solution that makes it interesting to me. There's just nothing in it that sells it to me. I'd just be throwing more money at Adobe for no added value to me.

And I'm sure Adobe would like me to do that. But I'm not going to. So by discontinuing standalone Lightroom, Adobe have basically ensured the following:
1) They're not going to get the money I would have paid for future upgrades. I would have happily tossed the 70-80€ for an upgrade to LR7 (just as I've done for most of the previous versions), but I'm not going to pay for a subscription.
2) They produce more work for me, when I eventually have to learn a new tool like DxO's when I eventually have need for functionality that isn't supported in LR6 (like newer camera models).
3) They ensure that I'm going to recommend to friends that they avoid Adobe when they ask me for advice on photo editing software.

Sure, their customers (the ones who actually end up buying anything) "prefer" the cloud options. Of course they will, when you've done your very best to hide away the standalone option on your webpage. Do they have any statistics on how many who have just not bought anything, after giving up trying to trawl through the bowels of Adobe.com to find the stuff that Adobe has been steadily trying their best to bury?
(Edited)
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Mark Kilkie

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Completely agree the OP.

In addition, I had been testing Classic CC since it came out last week (the trial is only 7 days by the way) and after playing around with it I was just about ready to subscribe for a year. On the desktop it seems moderately faster than LR6 and the dehaze tool is nice to have. The integration with the mobile app is handy even with the lack of a way to synch over a local network or cable connection. However, that last point, the need to synch via Adobe's server, is what kills it for me and I think other enthusiasts. While synching smart previews doesn't count toward the 20GB cap in the photography plan, synching originals back to Classic on the desktop from a mobile device does. Adobe confirmed this for me yesterday.

My photography tends to be done in bursts and usually away from the internet. My workflow involves backing up RAW images to my ipad or iphone while off the grid and culling them there before I get home. On a typical trip I easily exceed 20GB of RAW files that I will be bringing back into the desktop version of LR for further editing. In order to synch these original files and not loose the ratings and minor edits I've applied in the LR mobile app I need to synch via the cloud but if I'm over 20GB I'm out of luck, When I contacted Adobe about this they confirmed my understanding of the situation and suggested that I up the storage to 1TB which doubles the cost of the "photography plan". While I could reluctantly give the photography plan a shot at $120/yr  (that is at least in the range of what an upgrade to "Lightroom 7" would have cost me) paying $240 for a year to accomplish the same thing when I have no intention of actually storing images in Adobe's cloud is outright ridiculous for something that I will use in that manner maybe a few times in a year.

I'll be sticking with my paid for copy LR6 until it stops working with Mac OS and will continue to use free 3rd party mobile apps for culling etc. combined with direct import to my desktop via a lightning cable when I return home. This might not be as "elegant" as Adobe's attempt at integration but it's free and for this enthusiast it works. Bye-Bye Adobe, you almost had me.

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Victoria Bampton - Lightroom Queen, Champion

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If I'm understanding you correctly, there might be a workaround for your trips. I can't test this right now, but in theory, you could still import more than 20GB into the mobile app, but it would only upload 20GB to the cloud. When you got home, you could let it down the 20GB it uploaded, unsync those from Classic to free up the cloud space so mobile can upload another 20GB to the cloud, let them download that 20GB, unsync, and so forth. Not quite as elegant as just letting the whole lot upload and download in one go, but might be cheaper than paying for the 1TB if it doesn't happen often.
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avpman

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Would you please edit the post and provide a working link for https://blogs.adobe.com/.../lightroom-and-the-creative-cloud.... ? That link won't open for me.
Thanks!
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John Doe

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Adobe seems to have messed up the link, in my original text which I copied and pasted, it was complete. As I don't see an edit button, I'll try to post the link here: https://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal/2013/05/lightroom-and-the-creative-cloud.html?red=a&tduid=c50e2ac889a1c6acb759e006d4d4c5ae&url=https://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal/2013/05/lightroom-and-the-creative-cloud.html
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Jennifer Roberts

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Subscription Software.

We were promised that Adobe would continue to support the
original non-subscription version of Lightroom.

I
do not want to be held hostage by Adobe to subscription software.

Yes
I could afford it now - but Adobe will raise their prices, and I am
already a pensioner living in a time of increasing inflation - I
could be forced to terminate my subscription and then what!

I notice that you no longer even list basic non-cloud Lightroom software amongst the subjects that we might be emailing you about.
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avpman

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Even when you lease a car they give you a buy-out option at the of end of the lease so you can keep using what you had. I would gladly join the cloud TODAY, if there were an opportunity to buy-out at the end of my ability to repetitively pay.
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Jon9999

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Feedback to Adobe: Disappointed with your decision not to release Lightroom 7 sta....

(The Adobe Feature Request/Bug Report Form brought me here, so I assume this is the place to post feedback to Adobe's product team.)

I wish to register my extreme disappointment with your decision not to release a stand-alone, non-subscription version of Lightroom beyond the current version 6. I've been waiting for Lightroom 7 for a couple of years now so I can upgrade from Lightroom 4. I do not want to use a subscription-based service, and you have been promising for a very long time that Lightroom would remain available in a one-time purchase model, unlike Photoshop and your other programs. You have apparently gone back on this promise.

Please, Adobe, reconsider this move. You have a very loyal user base for your stand-alone, non-subscription Lightroom product. Please release Lightroom 7 as a regular, pay-once product -- as you promised you would continue to do.

Thank you.
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Andy

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Perpetual License vs Subscription.

You asked for feedback. I hate the subscription model. I love Lightroom. I've moved to Affinity for heavy lifting and I'll be moving off Lightroom once it becomes convenient. Adobe - you don't listen and prioritise money over customer value. Poor show.
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Nate M

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I am an amateur photographer and refuse to pay for subscription. A perpetual license pays for its self over time and a subscription forces you to over pay for the same product. Its ok though, I found an alternative that is just as good. Anyone here of Affinity Photo? https://affinity.serif.com/en-us/photo/ Its cheap and offers the same capabilities as Photoshop. I asked for a perpetual license and the sale department told me they no longer have perpetual licenses. Well then I guess I no longer have Adobe products. I will be converting my family over to affinity photo as well. I am throughly enjoying it. Have fun with your corporate greed Adobe. I will no longer be apart of it! t(-_-t). 
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