Since 1985, Adobe has been bringing the world innovative software solutions, including 17 generations of Adobe Illustrator. This year, they shook things up with Adobe Creative Cloud, and it has been a year of both praise and backlash.

Undoubtedly, Adobe is one of the most utilized business tools of all time. Its software portfolio is one of the most pirated of all software (as I outlined in a previous post here).  So, it shouldn’t be too shocking that Adobe has created an online registration component to its new product offering. The obvious intention is that fewer people will illegally download and use their programs.

Great software can cost thousands, but the truth about Adobe Creative Cloud is that it’s a cheaper and easier way to access one of the most brilliant and undervalued tools of 2013.

Best Business Tool Sets
Adobe Creative Cloud gives users access to the company’s suite of software for graphic design, video editing, web development applications, and cloud services.  You can literally run the entire marketing and creative side of your business with it, from R&D, a product catalog, website design, viral video, to GIF ad creatives etc.

Adobe isn’t in the Business of SMB
There’s an uproar in the startup community about users now being forced to use the new Cloud Services over their previous license model. However, Adobe’s target market isn’t startups, small to medium-sized businesses. Adobe is an enterprise level company, offering enterprise level software. In context, they compete directly with software and hardware giant Oracle.  Despite this, Adobe’s new Creative Cloud makes it easier for everyone to access its services.

Cost Effectiveness
Here’s an example of the cost difference at a glance: Adobe Illustrator CS9 is currently available at Best Buy for $637.99 CAD.  To subscribe to the new Adobe Illustrator from Adobe Cloud, it costs $239.88 for 12 months (equivalent to $19.99/month).  That’s a savings of $398.11. Considering some of Adobe’s software is priced at over $1,000 each, having access to the entire suite for $49.99 a month is a bargain for even startup teams.

It’s the Same but Better
Despite the common misconception, Adobe Creative Cloud is not really a cloud service offering. You download the program to your computer like any other program, and it works just the same as if it was from a CD. However, you can also save your work to the cloud and share it on your different devices.

Just like the Mp3 is to the CD, all software will eventually turn fully digital.  Adobe Creative Cloud is merely a preview of this software business model.  For users like you and me, it’s a matter of getting comfortable with it now or getting left behind.  And as a lesson for startups, this subscription model is a good lesson in the art of running a successful online business. It means giving the customer what they want, but not at the expense of the business and bottom line.

For an in-depth look at all the programs included, check out Adobe’s website. They also recently launched a series of tutorials.  Try Adobe Creative Cloud today for free for 30 days, and share your candid comments about it below.

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