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Posts tagged with "Adobe"

Adobe Flash’s Days Are Officially Numbered

Adobe announced today that it has set the end-of-life date for Flash, its popular technology for displaying animations and other multimedia on the web.

Adobe is planning to end-of-life Flash. Specifically, we will stop updating and distributing the Flash Player at the end of 2020 and encourage content creators to migrate any existing Flash content to these new open formats.

Apple has a long and storied history with Adobe and, more pointedly, Flash. When the first iPhone launched ten years ago, one of the chief controversies at the time surrounded the fact that Safari on iPhone OS did not support Flash, and Steve Jobs made it clear that it would not support Flash.

This stance grew into more of a sticking point for prospective consumers in 2010 when Apple’s new tablet, the iPad, did not support Flash either. Sparked by the newly revised controversy, Jobs laid out his thoughts on the issue in a piece simply titled “Thoughts on Flash.” His closing words predicted the technology could not survive in an increasingly mobile-first landscape.

Flash was created during the PC era – for PCs and mice...New open standards created in the mobile era, such as HTML5, will win on mobile devices (and PCs too). Perhaps Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future, and less on criticizing Apple for leaving the past behind.

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Google’s Chrome Browser to Block Flash

Yesterday, Google announced that its Chrome browser will begin blocking Flash that runs in the background of webpages in September and make HTML5 the ‘default Chrome experience’ in December. According to Google:

Today, more than 90% of Flash on the web loads behind the scenes to support things like page analytics. This kind of Flash slows you down, and starting this September, Chrome 53 will begin to block it. HTML5 is much lighter and faster, and publishers are switching over to speed up page loading and save you more battery life. You’ll see an improvement in responsiveness and efficiency for many sites.

In December, Chrome 55 will make HTML5 the default experience, except for sites which only support Flash.

It has been more than six years since Steve Jobs penned an open letter titled ‘Thoughts on Flash,’ in which he concluded:

Flash was created during the PC era – for PCs and mice. Flash is a successful business for Adobe, and we can understand why they want to push it beyond PCs. But the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short.

The avalanche of media outlets offering their content for Apple’s mobile devices demonstrates that Flash is no longer necessary to watch video or consume any kind of web content. And the 250,000 apps on Apple’s App Store proves that Flash isn’t necessary for tens of thousands of developers to create graphically rich applications, including games.

New open standards created in the mobile era, such as HTML5, will win on mobile devices (and PCs too). Perhaps Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future, and less on criticizing Apple for leaving the past behind.

Jobs’ open letter was controversial when it was published. In 2010, Flash was everywhere, serving much of the video on the web and acting as a platform for online gaming. HTML5 was making headway, but it was the clear underdog.

Adobe’s initial response to Jobs came from none other than Kevin Lynch, who was the CTO of Adobe in 2010, but is now a Vice President of Technology at Apple, leading the development of watchOS. Lynch announced that Adobe was shifting its focus away from the iPhone and iPad in favor of implementing Flash on Android and other mobile platforms.

Flash never got a firm foothold in the mobile world. Roughly eighteen months after Jobs’ open letter, Adobe abandoned Flash for mobile and began to embrace HTML5. Since then, HTML5 has been incorporated into many of Adobe’s products and Adobe has actively participated in its development. The decline of Flash on PCs has been slower, but is likely to accelerate given Chrome’s browser market share, which, according to NetMarketShare, exceeds 50%.

Chrome is notoriously hard on laptops’ battery life. In what struck me as a significant understatement, Google says that:

Aside from [being prompted to enable Flash on Flash-only sites], the only change you’ll notice is a safer and more power-efficient browsing experience.

In a consumer PC market dominated by laptops, better battery life and safety may be the ‘only’ benefits users will notice, but they are nonetheless significant.


How Adobe is Reimagining Photoshop for the Mobile Era

Harry McCracken, writing for Fast Company:

What wasn't instantly obvious, however, was exactly how to translate Photoshop into an experience that made sense on the iPad and other mobile devices. In 2011, Adobe released three "Photoshop Touch" iPad apps—Eazel, Color Lava, and Nav—which were complements to Photoshop in its full-strength form rather than stand-alone tools. Then in 2012, it introduced an app called Photoshop Touch, which took a smallish subset of desktop Photoshop’s features, stripped out most of their advanced features, and rejiggered the interface so it worked with touch input.

This year, the company started all over again. It discontinued development of Photoshop Touch—which was available for iPhones and Android devices as well as iPads—and announced that Photoshop's future on the iPad and other mobile devices would henceforth involve smaller, specialized tools rather than anything that retained Photoshop's traditional everything-and-the-kitchen-sink flavor.

Adobe has done a rather phenomenal job in its transition from boxed software to the subscription-based Adobe Creative Cloud, as its latest quarter's record revenue figures clearly demonstrate. Over that same period, Adobe has also invested substantially in developing apps for mobile devices, and most significantly, the iPad. In fact earlier this year in May I looked at the number of iOS apps developed by Adobe, and at the time they had 50 apps in the App Store that had been updated within the last year (another 59 had been pulled from sale or not been updated in over a year).

As McCracken's story makes clear, Adobe's strategy for mobile devices isn't about slimming down their flagship desktop products so that they can run on mobile devices. Instead, Adobe has focused on creating apps for specific tasks, whether it be Photoshop Fix for retouching photos or Photoshop Mix for combining and blending images and layers together. In that way, Adobe claims that they can offer a better mobile product, that can in some ways offer a better experience than on the desktop.

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Adobe Introduces New Features and New Apps in Big iOS Updates Today

Adobe today updated over a dozen of its iOS apps, refreshing their designs, consolidating multiple apps into new, unified, apps and adding big new features to some of their most popular apps. Here are some of the highlights:

Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Lightroom on iOS can now be used for free, provided that you don't need to sync your photos with Adobe Creative Cloud (which is still paid). Other new features include better color control and the ability to control the amount of atmospheric haze in your photos.

Download - Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Photoshop Fix

Adobe Photoshop Fix is a new app designed specifically to do image retouching and restoration on your iOS device. It features the liquify, heal and patch, smooth, and lighten and darken tools that Photoshop users will be familiar with.

Free - Download Photoshop Fix

Adobe Capture CC

Adobe Capture CC is a new, consolidated, app that brings together the features from Brush CC, Color CC, Hue CC and Shape CC. This means that you can extract color themes from photos, convert photos and drawings into vector graphics, create brushes from photos. Essentially, Adobe Capture CC is all about capturing design assets for use in other Adobe apps.

Free - Download Adobe Capture CC

Adobe Photoshop Sketch

Now at version 3.0, Adobe Photoshop Sketch adopts the features from the now-defunct Adobe Illustrator Line app, which means it supports perspective and graph grids, drawing French curves, polygons and other new shapes that weren't previously available. Also new is its support for watercolor paintbrushes (on newer iPads) and the ability to add images directly from Adobe Stock.

Free - Download Adobe Photoshop Sketch

Read more


Adobe’s Project Rigel

Stephen Shankland, writing for CNET on Adobe's plans for Project Rigel, a new photo editing app for iOS:

Photoshop is so well known that the product name is synonymous with photo editing. But the software itself is a success only on personal computers, not smartphones or tablets.

Photoshop's maker, Adobe Systems, hopes that will change in October at its Max conference for developers and creative professionals when it introduces a new Photoshop app for editing photos on Apple's iPhones and iPads. The free software, called only Project Rigel for now, is designed to bring a more accessible interface to what can be a dauntingly complex program on PCs.

Probably a smarter move than the old Photoshop Touch app to focus on photo editing for iPhone and iPad with advanced tools. The app will be free and act as a “bait” for the subscription-based desktop Photoshop. It'll be interesting to compare this to existing apps such as Pixelmator and Snapseed.

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No Ecosystem Is an Island: Google, Microsoft, Facebook & Adobe’s iOS Apps

Apple doesn't make a single Android or Windows Phone app, and makes barely anything for Windows. But Apple's reluctance to develop on other platforms hasn't stopped Google and Microsoft from bringing their own apps across to iOS. That shouldn't be any surprise at all, given the different business strategies the three take. But what might be surprising is the extent to which Google and Microsoft have committed to bringing apps to iPhone and iPad users.

You are no doubt aware of the big apps from Microsoft (Word, Outlook and Minecraft) and Google (Gmail, Maps, Calendar), but the reality is that these two companies alone have over 150 apps available on the iOS App Store today. For good measure, I've also taken a look at the iOS development efforts from Adobe and Facebook, which are also significant.

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Project LayUp for iPad

Project LayUp is an upcoming iPad brainstorming app developed by Khoi Vinh in collaboration with Adobe that was announced at Adobe MAX earlier this week. Based on the information released so far, LayUp will let you sketch ideas and start your design process on an iPad with a combination of wireframes, graphical assets, and even real fonts loaded from Typekit. Then, LayUp will be able to export a live InDesign, Illustrator, or Photoshop file to continue working on your project in Adobe's full-featured apps.

From the description:

Tablets are no longer just for browsing and playing games, they’ve become an integral part of the creative process. Project Layup is the brainchild of a customer and partner who used our just announced Creative SDK to reimagine on device prototyping, sketching, and ideation.

And from Vinh's blog post:

So that’s what I proposed to Scott: a new iPad app that would turbo-charge the brainstorming phase of the design process, and that would play nicely with Adobe’s marquee apps. I called it “LayUp.” To my surprise, he took me up on the idea, and assigned a team at Adobe to start developing it. So for the better part of this year, I’ve been working with that team to bring LayUp to life.

You can watch Vinh's presentation at Adobe MAX below, which features a preview of the interface and gestures used to assemble ideas and gather assets directly on the iPad.

I'm intrigued by LayUp's use of gesture shortcuts: drawing lines and other shapes to drop blocks of text or images into the canvas is smart, and the implementation looks natural and intuitive. Alissa Walker, writing for Gizmodo, notes:

What I was most struck by while watching Vinh demo the app is how natural this felt: It was as if the iPad has been waiting all this time to be used to its full potential in this way. The resulting file is not a production-ready document, of course, but this is far better than anything else you could create with the tools that are out there. Adobe is very smart to bring on some of the top designers to play around with new ways to make their software even more relevant across more platforms.

I often need to sketch out ideas I want to send to our designer for MacStories, but I'm not good at sketching. I'm looking forward to trying LayUp.

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Adobe’s Mobile App Canvas Adds New Apps

As part of its opening keynote for its developer and creative conference, Adobe will be announcing a more integrated desktop and mobile strategy, which centres around several new iPhone and iPad applications and some rebranded old favourites.

At Adobe Max it will reveal how each app fits into a category where it works with equivalent Adobe desktop software, with some split into groups and others working across most of its creative software. It calls the new line up its "mobile canvas" and what's more, you don't even have to wait until after the keynote to download them.

Rik Henderson of Pocket-lint provides a good overview of all of Adobe's key mobile apps following their announcements yesterday at the Adobe MAX conference. Many of the apps launched earlier this year, but a few, including Premiere Clip, Color and Shape are new.

Above all, it is impressive to see how seriously Adobe is taking mobile, and in particular, how rapidly they are rolling out new apps and updates to their existing ones. As always, these apps are free but require a subscription to Adobe's Creative Cloud service. If you want to learn more, Adobe's mobile app page has got details on all of these new and existing apps for the iPhone and iPad.

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Making the Switch from Aperture to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

Adobe yesterday published a six-page document outlining a workflow for those users who want to transition from Aperture to Lightroom. Its an interim measure for those users who want to switch to Lightroom now, but Adobe also affirmed their commitment to develop a proper migration tool for Aperture and Adobe Lightroom.

At Adobe, we’re working on a migration tool to help you bring your photos into Adobe Photoshop Lightroom from Aperture, but if you’re eager to switch before the tool is ready, this guide can help ease your transition. We recognize that this migration may be a challenging process and offer the following resources and methodology to help get you up to speed with Lightroom and provide a road map for successfully migrating your photos.

This all comes after Apple announced in late June that it was ending development of Aperture. Apple is instead focusing its development efforts on the new Photos app, launching on Yosemite early next year.

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