Adobe Photoshop has been so influential in the world of media that the name of the app itself is used to generally describe an image that has been edited. But while the name is everywhere, not everyone uses the app, and Adobe is hoping to change that with a new free version.
According to The Verge, Adobe is making a “freemium” version of Photoshop on the web that is currently only available in Canada. Users need to sign up for an Adobe account to access the free web version that is missing several features but the core features are accessible. To get the full version, users will have to pay for an Adobe Creative Cloud membership–though Photoshop on the web doesn’t yet have as many features as the standalone app. Photoshop on the web is currently in beta, and Adobe is adding more features to it as time goes on.
Photoshop on the web works only on either the Chrome or Microsoft Edge browsers, and if you try to use an unsupported browser such as Safari, users will only be able to view and comment on existing documents. An Adobe FAQ says that the company will “soon bring editing to other browsers, such as Firefox,” but makes no mention of Safari or Webkit.
If you’re an iPad user, Adobe doesn’t recommend using Photoshop on the web on the tablet. According to Adobe’s FAQ, “You can currently edit in Photoshop on the web beta on non-mobile web browsers only. You can view and comment using a mobile web browser. For iPad, we recommend you try Photoshop on the iPad, which is included in your Creative Cloud subscription.”
Adobe did not mention its plans to expand access to the free Photoshop on the web to more regions, but the Canada trial is presumably a test run. Maria Yap, Adobe’s VP of digital imaging, told the Verge: “We want to make [Photoshop] more accessible and easier for more people to try it out and experience the product.”
Users who decide to pay for an Individual Adobe Creative Cloud subscription to get the full set of features will pay $21 per month for Photoshop or $55 per month for the full suite of Adobe apps.
While Photoshop has a legacy of its own, its price, Adobe’s subscription model, and the app’s complexity has turned off potential customers, with consumers turning to more user-friendly apps such as Acorn, Affinity Photo, or Pixelmator. Adobe’s freemium offering is clearly an attempt to better compete with those apps and to get more people to sign up for Create Cloud subscriptions.
Adobe Systems, Image Editors