A new deal for all photographers: Photoshop CC + Lightroom 5 for $9.99/mo.

I’m delighted to say that for a limited time, Adobe’s Photoshop Photography Program is available to everyone. The team writes,

By “everyone” we mean EVERYONE! Sign up before Dec. 2 to get Photoshop, Lightroom, 20GB of storage, and Behance ProSite for $9.99/month

As before, the intention is not to get you in at $9.99/mo., then crank up the price after a year. $9.99 is the expected ongoing price. The difference is that you now don’t need to own a copy of Photoshop or Creative Suite CS3 or higher. Please do note that this is a limited-time deal, so you’ll want to jump in before December 2.

57 thoughts on “A new deal for all photographers: Photoshop CC + Lightroom 5 for $9.99/mo.

  1. I’ll pass. Adobe can keep their “deal” and I’ll keep my old Adobe products. When they no more support them, I’ll find something else.

  2. adobe’s learning curve is interesting to observe .. as a cs6 owner, wasn’t allowed the privilege of this fine deal, now i am … 🙂

  3. It jumps back up to $20/month after a year though, right?
    [No. –J.]
    A little sleazy how deeply that fact was buried.
    [On the contrary, I specifically said otherwise in the post. –J.]

  4. I don’t want to be that cynical person… BUT. The Terms still state that “After the first 12 months, we will automatically renew your contract based on the current price of the offering.” I know you said in the post that the current price is “expected” to be $9.99/mo ongoing, but there is no actual assurance anywhere in writing that it *won’t* jump up to $20/mo immediately following the first year.
    [I share your frustration. I don’t know what prevents us from simply locking in that price. I can tell you, hand to God, that I’ve never heard anyone here say that there’s a plan to raise the price 12 months from now (or any other time). I don’t know why we can’t just commit to that & move on. –J.]

    1. The terms still state—and will always state—”…we will automatically renew your contract based on the current price of the offering.”
      Why? Because, just like any other subscription-based offering, this is how they make their money. It is foolish to wonder why Adobe doesn’t do otherwise.
      Unfortunately, John can raise both hands to God, swearing that he hasn’t heard anything about prices being raised. It still doesn’t diminish the fact that Adobe still doesn’t listen to its users, lies about how many users are really subscribed to Adobe CC (less than they claim—else they wouldn’t open up this new deal), lies about how many users’ private data was lost (3 mil. vs. 38 mil. users), and now comes out with a new ‘deal’ to sucker-in more users because they do not want to admit that the subscription model is failing.
      With Pixelmator quickly becoming a serious alternative to Photoshop, Quark should get its act together and follow suit in order to regain the document layout crown. The Adobe monopoly is crumbling and Adobe keeps digging its heels in the sand.

    2. kathi, if i were to sign up, i’d do so fully prepared to cancel my subscription at the end of the year because the cost will probably go up.
      Why would we expect prices to stay low? The execs and shareholders want more profit, not less. Seems they are willing to tear down a company to get it.
      It’s not only the cost. Adobe is now a ‘service’. It has never shown great customer service. I’m not aware that anything has changed based on all the complaints I’m seeing on the forums. Never mind the security problems with our private info.
      Sorry to repeat it, but like so many I have lost faith in Adobe doing the right thing. No matter how much profit they were already making it wasn’t enough. So hold on. It’s gonna be a wild ride the next few years. The last year or more has shown us what to expect.

  5. Adobe, make it $1/mo. so I can still say no and maybe you will finally begin to get it: the argument is not about price, but about my (our) refusing to rent without an acceptable exit strategy.
    (However, I may consider becoming your whore if you will commit to a 10-year lock on a $5/mo. price.)

  6. What happens when we stop paying? How can we access our work? Surely with all those clever people at Adobe they must have come up with a solution by now? A cynic would think Adobe only have their eyes on their share options…..

  7. yeah bullshit… americans are subventioned by australians and other nations again.
    i don´t see such a deal where i live….

  8. What happens if I sign up on Dec. 3rd? I’m confused by the apparent contradiction of the price staying the same and having to join by Dec. 2nd.

  9. I like the look on those characters’ faces. To me it says, “Why the hell have I been paying $50 per month?”
    Also, the terms and conditions say “After the first 12 months, we will automatically renew your contract based on the current price of the offering.” I like John and think he’s telling us what he believes to be true about the ongoing price, but please don’t assume his blog represents official corporate policy or pricing plans. The available plans have changed several times in the last half year or so. If Adobe wants to change them in a year, John’s previous assurances won’t be worth the pixels they’re written with.

  10. So, Adobe, it should be clear from these few comments that you’ve squandered all the trust you built up in years past. Worse, you obviously have no clue about how to get any of it back. Thus, in PG-rated vernacular, go pound sand!

  11. John, does this mean the previous offer till the end of december for those who own photoshop cs3-cs6 is no longer available?
    [No, that’s still in place. The ownership requirement is lifted for the next two weeks or so, but the overarching offer remains in place. –J.]
    It would be good if Adobe was clear about what they are doing.
    [Sorry, we’re trying! Please keep asking questions & we’ll work to improve the docs. –J.]

  12. I asked this question on the cc forum at adobe, about the offer for cs3-cs6 owners and Beverly Gray, labeled ‘staff’ at Adobe said it stands till 31 December like when it was first announced.
    Man oh man, Adobe could use some pr help. Being clear and relatively ‘honest’ with paying customers is not really an option. At least I don’t think it should be. Though Adobe has treated it as such since announcing this subscription nonsense.
    Makes me wonder about Adobe’s future two, three years down the line. Wonder if the current execs will still be running the show. If they’ll drop subscriptions and go back to how they used to do business. Maybe they’ll offer both. I do think I’ll try the Photoshop + Lightroom offer for a year. See what the price is for year two. See how good service is. Keep CS6 and a stand alone copy of Lightroom 4/5 on my computer, just in case.

  13. I’m IN. Even as a hobbyist, I believe there’s plenty of value for $10/month. Thanks Adobe, I was afraid I’d have to give up PS/Lr as my (retiree) budget couldn’t handle previous CC options. Thanks, John for the tweet making me aware of the deal!

    1. I’m with Tom, I’ve signed up and am fully prepared to opt out if the price is hiked unreasonably. As I use Photoshop CC I’ll back up all my files to my hard drive.

  14. $10 is a really good price for PS+LR. Hell even World of Warcraft players pays more than that each month for having some fun. I calculated that for $10/month. It would take me about 10 years of that subscription cost, to reach the cost of the Full version of CS6 here in Sweden. 10 Years! I don´t know why every whines about this. I pay more on my Netflix account. One visit to the cinema would be more expensive than this. I already got my sub. But I´ll forward this offer to other colleagues.

  15. I feel that such limited time offers for short sighted bargain hunters isn’t the style a reputable company should adopt. One should point out that there’s no reasonable argument whatsoever to restrict the timeframe – the mere reason is to set hesitant customers under pressure. Nasty, really.
    Instead of further using such junk-business methods please return to integrity and set up an exit strategy for your rental service which can be considered acceptable. Please give users who have payed a sufficient amount of money an option to keep the latest version of the product.

  16. What if I already own a non-rental copy of Lightroom 5? Do I get to pay for it all again just for the privilege of renting photoshop for the rest of my life? No Thanks!

    1. Exactly. I have paid thousands into the Adobe coffers over the years, and now Adobe is telling me my investment is obsolete and trying to sell me the same products in a different bundle. No thanks indeed!

  17. Adobe still just does not get the fact that a lot of folks will not “rent” software. From a PS user from 2.0 (not CS2), sell me a license to upgrades. Put this subscription thing into the garbage.

  18. John,
    I am not shooting the messenger and thanks for your entertaining and informative blog but:
    I am sure the Head guys at Adobe chuckle when they read the above comments.They may even admit in a moment of weakness that C(credit)C(card)has been a public relations disaster,a bad roll-out and even perhaps a bad idea … but maybe not, as they seem to operate far from reality.
    The simple fact is that Adobe has done nothing to assuage long-time supporters. Adobe has cobbled together inconsistent and open to interpretation pricing polices with gaps such as their current offering with no recognition of current LR5 owners as the previous poster stated. I happen to be in this camp.
    Additionally, there is no justification that a non-North American should pay substantially more for this product.
    With competitors snapping to their heels (Onone, Pixelmator or even the latest GIMP offering). Adobe’s CC offering is quickly becoming redundant and overkill to all but graphics firms and high-end operations.
    There is an urban legend going around that the product managers of Lightroom and Photoshop once met in an elevator, with the former telling the later that his job was to make the latter’s job redundant. That day can’t happen fast enough !!
    If I were a shareholder I would be increasingly concerned at the direction being taken by this enterprise.

    1. Just to put some reality back into this discourse, the shareholders in ADBE seem to be doing just fine – the stock price stood at $32.50 a year ago and closed at almost $56 today.
      In terms of alternatives to Photoshop and/or Lightroom, it’s interesting to note the increasing popularity of free (and, in some cases, open source) programs. Here are two: Darktable (Linux and MAC only) http://www.darktable.org, plus Lightzone (Linux, MAC and Windows) http://www.lightzoneproject.org/ (which wasn’t originally free ….). Also, more specialized, though development seems to have been halted for a while: Luminance HDR (Linux, MAC and Windows) http://qtpfsgui.sourceforge.net

  19. Renting software is an absolute no-go for me.
    And Adobes (non) communication after the user account hack didn’t anything to build up trust.
    Add the nonexistent service.
    Equals: Adobe is no future option.

  20. Aaaaaah, there’s nothing like a great deal to make people even more suspicious!
    Come on guys, let’s be realistic – if Adobe hikes the price at the end of a year, then everyone will just unsubscribe and no one will trust them ever again. They’ve made mistakes, but they’re not completely suicidal.

    1. Hi Victoria, sad to say, I kind of agree with the sentiment of nikonguy. Trust went out the window a while ago. I feel many would have already left Adobe in the dust if there had been good alternatives to some of their software.
      But I’m thinking to try this cc photoshop + lightroom deal for a year knowing well that I might stop at years end. Be ready for it with files and alternatives. But I do have a copy of photoshop CS6. So I’m ok there for a while. Would just need to update LR4 to whatever is available in a year.
      Even that. I’ve been thinking to drop LR for Capture One if need be. Hate to leave Photoshop and LR but I’m not living and working for adobe’s executives and shareholders.

      1. > But I’m thinking to try this cc photoshop + lightroom deal for a year knowing well that I might stop at years end …
        > I do have a copy of CS6 and LR4 [and] hate to leave Photoshop and LR but I’m not living and working for adobe’s executives and shareholders.

        That sounds odd – where do you think the money went when you previously bought CS6 and LR4?
        All companies have got to pay the employees and keep the lights on, this is just a different model to doing so.
        It’s not pleasing all of the people all of the time, nevertheless it’s hard to argue that the company is taking advantage of its customers with this type of program… The initial entry cost is just $10 and the annual cost is significantly less than one old PS upgrade per year, plus of course you get LR and other things too.
        So the standard pricing here hardly seems like gouging, which is what some people seem to be afraid of despite Adobe only ever reducing the price of subscriptions since they were first introduced several years ago.

  21. I have a question. I am a owner of LR 5 and I’m interested in what changes when I choose to subscribe. Am I able to only install PS CC and keep my normal lr5 license?
    [Good question, and yes, the perpetual license you’ve already bought for LR5 will run in perpetuity. Adding PS will have no impact on it. –J.]
    And which ways are there to cancel the subscription after one year? Web Form? Mail, email, telephone?
    [I think you can manage your subscription via creative.adobe.com, and I’m sure you can call customer service. –J.]

  22. Simple question: If Adobe CC was so good and people didn’t mind renting software why such a, “good deal” for “everyone?” Is Adobe really just being kind? I doubt it. It seems to me that if people wanted to rent software and they had a lot of users signing up for CC, they wouldn’t need to offer such a, “good deal.” This significantly lower price for anyone who wants it, not just former owners, indicates to me that things aren’t going well and they are trying to boost subscriptions.

  23. Wasn’t the original offer to “loyal” Adobe customers sold as a way Adobe was showing that it cared about customer loyalty. How much does customer loyalty mean to Adobe now that “anyone” can get the same deal.
    [I hear you, but to me this illustrates a bit of human nature: We don’t want a good deal (or to be happy), we want a *better* deal (and to be happier) than someone else got. –J.]
    Just another reason I don’t trust anything Adobe says anymore. I continue to see them spin every new offering and then move in a direction that contradicts what they just said.

    1. No. I don’t think you are hearing me(us). You want us to trust that Adobe won’t raise prices ( or at least not appreciably) at the end of the year. But history continues to repeat itself that Adobe will change the rules at any point without regard to previous statements they’ve made. This isn’t about getting a better deal than someone else. This is about being able to trust that the deal Adobe is currently selling won’t change to my detriment in the future just because they can.
      Loyalty must be earned continually. Adobe has lost mine.

  24. The reason that the actual Adobe subscription contract says ”…we will automatically renew your contract based on the current price of the offering” rather than saying ”…we will automatically renew your contract for $9.99 per month every year forever” is because Adobe intends to do the former and not the latter. One would have be either unrealistically optimistic or a complete sucker to believe otherwise. Their contract says what they mean; all else is wishful thinking and spin.
    The more that I see of Adobe’s previously loyal customer reactions to Adobe’s rental only scheme, and Adobe’s subsequent reactions, the more I wonder whether Adobe’s management has watched “The Producers” and has figured out an arcane method to short Adobe’s stock five years into the future…
    If you haven’t watched “The Producers,” I urge you to do so. It is enormously funny.
    Just kidding, folks – I don’t really think that their management is that creative.

  25. Usually. I don’t write more than a short comment but here is a thing– when I was a teenager I loved the Beatles, now my mother and father were in their 40’s when I was born, and my father threw a fit about ‘monkey music’ well I was shocked when my mother said ” No Alex(same name as me) you have to change with the times. This is there music and maybe it isn’t so bad” I was shocked and that profoundly changed me.
    I am working with CC, and up till last week I was the EXTREME anti CC guy. You know it is pretty good, I think it will add 15 years to my life because their is so much more I can do that I never considered. If you open your mind you may find it has advantages that we never considered before. The sync capability is really cool. The new updates are immediate.You only have to go online every 99 days.(that is a little ,eh!,) I am shocked to say Try it for the 30 days with a open mind. It is quite well thought out.

  26. As long as I am at it, anyone that relies on sales to live on, as in business, should know by now we are in the most volatile world market ever conceived. It is almost out of control. Most of the companies you know are barely holding on, Revolutions are started by Google. Credit card and fraud in general is out of control. Anyone who is honest will concede we are all fighting like hell to stay alive. Is that cover it? if you think I am wrong- wake up.

    1. “Anyone who is honest will concede we are all fighting like hell to stay alive.”
      Absolutely. Which is why I can’t give more control of my budget to Adobe. I had the option to hold off upgrade costs if money was tight under CS. CC is a perpetual overhead cost that by design shuts my business down if I don’t pay. (No there aren’t good alternatives or compatible programs for all Adobe CC formats) and I don’t trust Adobe enough now to know how high monthly costs will go or what new terms will become attached to CC. Once you go CC you are captive to whatever terms they come up with in the future for CC formats and pricing, and you must pay it regardless to continue. That freaks me out. It’s not products they sell anymore, it’s a service operated in a manner they dictate.
      Healthcare, food, gas, taxes, and everything else is way up and income is flat with work getting more scarce. Life is tough everywhere. It’s not irrational or stupid to see CC as a bad thing, we just look at it from different perspectives and needs. Glad it works for you though. CC seems to currently work well for Adobe shareholders who think this will all end in sunshine and roses.

      1. Landon, it is a pleasure to hear from a like minded businessman. My view is this- with the whole CC programs- I will make my own web- save $89 every 3 mo. Make other webs? I can now. Totally replace all my other software and directly edit and burn videos, and my conversions-VHS to dvd. and so forth. Yes it scares me because I have too many eggs in Adobe’s basket, but my personal dealings with several Adobe key players from meets at Vegas’s Photoshopworld, have led me to trust them with my future in those areas. I am gambling they are men of honor. I hope I am correct. What more can we do? We trust and then we do. Our life, love, fortune and sacred honor is all we really have.

        1. “I am gambling they are men of honor. I hope I am correct. What more can we do? We trust and then we do. Our life, love, fortune and sacred honor is all we really have.”
          Agreed, and well put. By my experience with companies is that the larger they get, the less you work with men and more with bureaucracy and interests of shareholders. Adobe is about as big as it gets. No CEO is going to look you in the eye and shake your hand to promise anything and stick to it if it negatively affects the stock price. But I prefer your faith in them to my cynicism, so I hope for the sake of all that do have faith that it is well founded. Two and a half more years of this and we’ll know.

  27. Is the following paragraph true?
    Upon the expiration of this limited offer, the Photoshop Photography Program will continue to be available for $9.99/month to those photography customers who own a previous version of Photoshop Photoshop Extended, or Creative Suite, version CS3 or later (CS3.x, CS4, CS5.x, or CS6).
    So if I don’t own a copy of CS3 or later, then after the one year subscription of $9.99/month I will not be able to continue my subscription at that price ???

    1. Hi Jay, that text is just saying that this special offer will expire, not the PS program itself or its pricing…
      But the original offer period available for CS upgraders will continue to remain open until the end of the year.
      Regardless, once you’re in, you’re in – whether you own a previous version or not (and there’s no difference right now if you do).

  28. I thought about the offer quite some time.
    But in the offer it is said I get the package for one year for this price. Afterwards a year it will be the then current price. Correct me if I’m wrong, but right now the normal price is about 29 dollar. So if nothing changes that will be the normal price in one year.
    [No, that is emphatically not the plan. The only “limited time” aspect to the new offer is its availability, not the price. –J.]
    And Adobe can say, without lying, the price doesn’t have risen. I guess that Adobe thinks, after one year of use, the customers don’t want to miss PS an LR. This model is common use in many other business models.
    [We’ve all been screwed by cable & insurance companies, so your trepidation is totally understandable. Fortunately Adobe is not planning to take that path. –J.]
    I have to admit that I’m kind of torn.

  29. There really is some confusion about the “the intention is not to get you in at $9.99/mo., then crank up the price after a year.” part of the offer. Maybe you’d be so kind and shed some light on that. Looking at
    we find “After the first 12 months, we will automatically renew your contract based on the current price of the offering.”
    Which “current”? Today’s or in 12 month’s “current”?
    The translators Adobe employs have decided on one:
    Let me translate the sentence in question back to you from the German:
    “After the first 12 months, we will automatically renew your contract based on the current price of the offering at that time.”
    Note the difference “at that time” – “zum dann geltenden Preis” where “dann” signifies the future price…
    This is about legal finesse, yes but the terms that would apply in Germany say it will be raised to regular price. There is no room for interpretation while in English there is. Blog posts with intentions are lovely but it would be great if the legalese could say the same in a verbose way.

  30. Well, one more thought on “The difference is that you now don’t need to own a copy of Photoshop or Creative Suite CS3 or higher”: That was not the requirement of the original offer. Suite products didn’t qualify for it. Having owned every Master collection there was since CS3 and individual suites before that I was told that I didn’t qualify because I didn’t own a standalone version of PS and the terms and conditions said the same thing.

  31. 1) are you getting a local copy of the products
    and therefore the abillty to store your work locally or
    2) an online version of the products and if online version
    3) if online version can you store your work locally or must you store your work online?
    [It’s all local, with the option to sync your files to the cloud. –J.]

  32. I’m reluctant to become involved in the arguments against software subscriptions.
    However guys, this is a cracking good deal.
    $10 a month !!
    Costs way, way less than purchasing the products and you always have the latest version.
    If you haven’t subscribed you’re already missing out on some amazing tool enhancements (especially to ACR).
    So although you think the ±205 people who don’t like the subscription model will force Adobe to change their minds about CC I think it will be the non-subscribers who will lose out and lose business to those who stay on the cutting edge of technology.
    If you don’t like it that’s your right.
    If you want to use PS – subscribe.
    If you don’t that’s cool too, but the bottom line is – you’re missing out (BIG TIME).

  33. It’s a cracking good deal if the price remains like this. If Adobe makes us pay a (lot) more after one year (nobody knows for sure apparantly), then it’s not a good deal but a sales trick.

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