Is Adobe Creative Cloud Really Worth It?

If you’re heavily involved in design, you’ve most likely utilized the Adobe products in the past. This past summer, it was announced that Adobe will no longer produce any CS products, indefinitely forcing users to switch to their new Creative Cloud.  Now the question is – should you switch or stay with what you have? And the answer is – that’s up to you.

Most users haven’t made the switch because they already shelled out money to pay for Adobe’s steeply priced products and they would prefer to utilize what they paid for. Others don’t see a point in switching to the Creative Cloud because they “don’t need all of those products”. So who should get Creative Cloud? Well, that ultimately depends on what your own design goals are.

It Is Subscription Based

That means that you essentially subscribe to the service either yearly or monthly.  This is a great option for those who aren’t very committed or want to try it out before they commit to paying annually. The benefit with this is that Adobe is always updating their products (similar to how your smart phone apps constantly update) and each update comes automatically with your subscription. The only con is that if you don’t pay, you will no longer have access to your products. This is the difference between CC and CS because with Creative Suite, you would pay for your license and once your product was installed, you would always have access to it.

Currently, the price ranges from $29-$49 per month for the service if paying annually and $79 per month if paying monthly. This is cheaper if you were the type of person who would always update their CS product when Adobe released an update. This is also great for businesses because it is a fixed price and makes it easier for your company to budget themselves. Adobe still offers specials for students and teachers, so be sure to check that out on their site.

Automatic Updates

Unlike in the past with CS products, every time Adobe upgraded (CS4 to CS5 to CS 5.5 to CS6) you were forced to make a decision: shell out more money to pay for the latest product, or stick with your outdated product for as long as you can. For all design professionals that utilize Adobe products, you’re well aware of the updates made with each new product and how it makes your job (ultimately) easier. If you’re someone who always needs to have the latest software, then that perk alone will catch your attention.

Access To All Products

This is the biggest reason why users are switching over to the Creative Cloud. With your subscription, you have access to every single Adobe product out there. This is great if you’re a multimedia designer who is involved in web, graphics, and even video in some cases. It’s also great if you’re looking to expand your knowledge within the design realm.

Many designers rarely use just one Adobe product. Graphic designers alone utilize Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. Web designers also use those products plus Dreamweaver and even Flash in some cases. Personally, that is what caught my eye when Creative Cloud was announced because let’s face it, having access to the entire Adobe library is definitely a huge perk.

Web Based Storage

This is a cloud after all and would be wrongly named if it didn’t utilize storage on the web. Like all cloud products, your work will be stored on your Creative Cloud account, enabling you to access it from multiple devices that have Creative Cloud installed.

So back to the original question – Is this all worth it? Unfortunately that is a question that only you can answer, but here are some question you can ask yourself first:

  • How long will you be using the products?
  • How frequently do you upgrade?
  • Which Adobe programs do you want or need to use?
  • Which tools would you like to expand to using in the future?
  • How important is it to always have the latest releases and best features?
  • Do you own a prior product you can upgrade from, or would you buy full?
  • What will your regular annual costs be when comparing the two different options?

Overall, if you’re going to upgrade often, utilize most of the Adobe tools, or always need the latest and greatest – you should invest in the Creative Cloud. Ultimately, you’ll be saving more which is always good, but the only con is that you will have to renew your subscription once it’s up.

Have you considered the Adobe Creative Cloud? Share your thoughts!


Source: MSM DesignZ, Inc. is a Westchester based NY web design firm specializing in social media, mobile apps, SEO, web and graphic design and much more.