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Posts tagged with "Adobe"

Why Photoshop on iOS Is A Huge Win for the iPad Pro

Jason Snell, writing for Macworld on the announcement of Photoshop coming to iPad next year:

Adobe’s move to iPad instantly makes everyone who knows, loves, or relies on Photoshop a possible candidate for an iPad Pro. And make no mistake, the iPad Pro is already plenty powerful enough to run Photoshop, and with the Apple Pencil it’s got an input method that will satisfy most graphics pros. Even better, Adobe has said that it will be building in cloud syncing for Photoshop files, so that you’ll be able to seamlessly hand off projects directly from one device to another.

A lot of the criticism of the iPad Pro as a flawed tool for doing real work comes down to software. The hardware is capable—but where’s the software? These arguments have been weak for a while now—I think Microsoft Office for iPad is aces, and Apple’s iWork apps are remarkably capable, too—but with every major app that arrives on the platform, the quieter that criticism has to get. Adobe’s also bringing a simplified version of Premiere, called Premiere Rush, to the iPad. I wonder if Apple’s considering just how Final Cut and Logic might work on the iPad?

As I've been arguing for a while now, I believe we're witnessing a shift in how tech companies – both platform owners and development studios – approach desktop and tablet software. Multiple factors – from better-looking displays and more powerful GPUs to cloud-based file management and subscriptions – are converging to make it possible to have a consistent app experience on every device you have without compromise. In this transition, iPad versions of desktop apps will be treated less like "companion" apps to a "real" desktop one and more like the same app, with the same features, optimized for touch and capable of adapting to the kind of computer it is running on (and adaptivity becomes especially important when you start considering external display output, for instance).

Photoshop, as Snell writes, is a first step. If Apple is truly pushing this vision forward, perhaps it's time they also start treating the iPad as a place for real pro apps, not just companion utilities of macOS apps.

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Project Gemini Is a New iPad Illustration App Coming from Adobe

Along with details about the forthcoming Photoshop for iPad, Adobe has announced another brand new iPad app coming soon, dubbed Project Gemini:

Today we announced Project Gemini—a focused new app focused specifically on drawing and painting. Building on Photoshop’s powerful brush engine, this new app combines powerful Photoshop brushes, precise and scalable vector brushes, and an entirely new category of groundbreaking Live oil and watercolor brushes – you’ve never seen anything like them. In addition, layers, selections, and masks enable the most modern non-destructive drawing and editing workflows.

Most importantly, though, we’ve built Project Gemini with the illustration community.

Kyle Webster, of KyleBrush.com, joined Adobe in 2017 to help build Gemini and act as an ambassador and advocate for the illustration community. Along with Kyle, a group of illustrators with diverse styles and backgrounds have been working closely with us to help Gemini achieve its potential.

According to the announcement post, the genesis of this new app was advancements in hardware that enabled Adobe's team to build more powerful tools than were previously possible. They highlight "selection and masking tools, combined raster and vector drawing capabilities" as some examples.

I'm not in the target market for this app, but I'm excited to see Adobe continue to rethink how modern iPads can enable more powerful, yet accessible app experiences than before.

If you'd like to join the Gemini beta when it begins, Adobe has a short survey available for interested testers.

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Adobe Unveils Photoshop for iPad, Launching in 2019

Earlier this year Adobe confirmed that it was working on a full-featured version of Photoshop for the iPad, but no real details on the product were given. Today that changed, however, as the app's official announcement arrived alongside the kickoff of Adobe's MAX conference.

Photoshop for iPad won't arrive until some time in 2019, but when it does launch it will differ drastically from Adobe's current lineup of Photoshop-related iOS apps. Rather than focusing on an individual subset of desktop features, like Adobe's existing Photoshop Fix, Express, and Mix do, the aim with this forthcoming app is to provide the full desktop Photoshop experience on an iPad.

As part of its iPad efforts, Adobe has brought the same underlying codebase of Photoshop for desktop to iOS, and it has also worked to modernize PSD files for the cloud. These new Cloud PSDs will be the default file format on the new iPad app, offering a seamless file experience across multiple devices. Adobe's chief product officer, Scott Belsky, told The Verge:

"Cloud PSDs, when we ship Photoshop on the iPad, will also run and automatically show up on your desktop...Suddenly, you’ll have this cloud-powered roundtrip experience akin to a Google Docs experience, where literally the source of truth of your Photoshop creation is in the cloud."

Cloud PSDs will eliminate the need for importing or exporting files, removing a major friction point that currently stands in the way of working with Adobe's apps on the iPad. With Creative Cloud's automatic syncing of all files, you should be able to pick up editing on any device at any time without needing to do a thing.

When manual importing or exporting does make sense to your workflow, those options will still be available in Photoshop for iPad. The app will support file providers like iCloud Drive, Dropbox, and more. Based on the preview version of the app, it appears to support Files.app's document providers, and I'm hopeful that iOS 11's drag and drop features will be supported as another option for importing and exporting.

The Verge was granted a week of hands-on time with Photoshop for iPad, and has a great video that demonstrates the app in action. It appears very similar to Photoshop on desktop, with some adaptations made for OS differences like iOS's lack of a menu bar. There are sure to be touch-optimized improvements offered too though, such as a gesture the video highlights where you can tap with two fingers on the screen to undo.

Though Adobe's goal is full feature parity between desktop and iPad versions of Photoshop, the 1.0 release of Photoshop on iPad will lack certain features that will be added over time with future updates. That full list of missing features is unavailable at this time, but we're sure to learn more as the launch approaches.

Photoshop for iPad will be available free to all Creative Cloud subscribers, but there's no word currently on whether a standalone purchase or iPad-only subscription will be possible. It would be a strong vote of confidence in iPad-first users to make the app available for non-CC subscribers, but based on Adobe's history that appears unlikely.

Today's announcement highlights what an exciting time it is to be an iPad user. With new iPad Pro models expected to be announced in the coming weeks, and a reported focus on significant iPad features coming in iOS 13, there's no time like the present for the full power of Photoshop to make its way to Apple's tablet.


Adobe Acknowledges Working on a Full Version of Photoshop for the iPad

Bloomberg reports that its sources say that Adobe is working on full versions of its desktop Photoshop app and other Creative Cloud apps for the iPad. Although Adobe has not committed to the October unveiling and 2019 ship date also cited by Bloomberg’s sources, its Chief Product Officer, Scott Belsky did acknowledge that the company is working on a new cross-platform version of Photoshop and other apps. Bloomberg’s sources say Illustrator is one of the other apps being developed for the iPad, which they say will be released sometime after Photoshop.

Belsky, noting that newer versions of Apple’s iPad Pro line are now capable of running Photoshop, told Bloomberg:

“My aspiration is to get these on the market as soon as possible,” Belsky said in an interview. “There’s a lot required to take a product as sophisticated and powerful as Photoshop and make that work on a modern device like the iPad. We need to bring our products into this cloud-first collaborative era.”

The addition of Photoshop and other Creative Suite apps to the iPad would be a significant step forward for the tablet’s push into the pro user market. Currently, only Microsoft’s Surface line of tablets is capable of running a fully-functional version of Adobe’s pro apps, making it the default choice for creative professionals who want to use Creative Suite on a tablet.

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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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