San Francisco -- Barely weeks after releasing an open beta that was downloaded at least over 500,000 times, Adobe Systems today began shipping the latest version of its Creative Suite 6, its mammoth but expensive collection of software for designers, artists, photographers, videographers, publishers, and others in the “content creation” business -- the company's first major refresh of the product line in more than two years.
This latest version of Creative Suite 6 is bundled with several new features to Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Premiere Pro, and all their companion apps that creative types know and love while innovating in key areas.
Among other cool stuff, the next-gen suite includes revamped versions of Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Flash Professional, After Effects and Adobe Premiere Pro as well as other software including Encore and Fireworks.
As always, CS6 also offers four suite versions: Creative Suite 6 Design & Web Premium; Creative Suite 6 Design Standard; Creative Suite 6 Production Premium; and Creative Suite 6 Master Collection.
As was announced alongside CS6, Adobe Creative Cloud, meanwhile, will make all of the CS6 apps available to subscribers for download, will be available from Friday, May 11, the company said in a news release. And with the launch of Adobe Creative Cloud, subscribers will be able to make, share and deliver their creative CS6 works across their desktops, mobile devices and the Web from anywhere, at any time, and with anyone via the cloud.
“We announced Creative Cloud and CS6 two weeks ago and these releases have captured the imagination of creatives everywhere,” said David Wadhwani, senior vice president, Adobe's Digital Media Business. “Today we are shipping CS6 and look forward to the beginning of an exciting new era as we introduce Creative Cloud later this week.”
“The objective for us is to be able to deliver rapid ongoing innovation through the cloud for our print, Web, mobile and applications developers,” said Adobe Systems CEO Shantanu Narayen at the CS6 launch event on April 23.
It is the version of CS6 that is aimed towards those who want to publish content to the Web. It is available at a subscription pricing of $49.99 a month.
Those looking to lay their hands on the premium software bundle will have four options to chose from: Adobe CS6 is available through Adobe and its authorized re-sellers now. Pricing starts at $1,299 for CS6 Design Standard and moves up to $1,899 for CS6 Design and Web Premium or CS6 Design Standard, and $2,599 for CS6 Master Collection.
Surprisingly, about three quarters of Adobe's unit shipments today are in these group, but the company is also offering a special discounted price on a full Creative Cloud membership, depending on how long you have had your current version, such as Photoshop CS6 for $699 in its standard version or Illustrator CS6 for $599.
According to Adobe, those who purchase CS6 can look forward to these new features:
New levels of performance with tools that take advantage of Adobe Mercury Graphics functionality, allowing users to go from ideas to finished work faster than ever before.
Enhanced user interfaces that vastly simplify workflows, so users can focus on their content and achieve results quicker.
New capabilities that streamline the creation of responsive content, ensuring website and apps look great across virtually all screen sizes and form factors.
Remarkable new science, integrated into imaging and video apps, makes previously impossible tasks suddenly possible.
A Team edition for businesses will be released later this year at a cost of $70 per month per user for an annual commitment. For a full breakdown of what each package comprises of and in the Creative Cloud, check out the official product page.
With CS6, Adobe tried to blend in performance enhancements such as a cache-related speedup to After Effects for video effects, interface upgradation such as Premiere Pro's simplified layout for video editing, splashy new features such as Photoshop's content-aware move tool and accelerated video, and hundreds of niggling “just do it” fixes.
Furthermore, the company had already given users a peek at the new version of Photoshop through a beta that ended on May 3, which showed more video-editing integration and new features such as search-able layers that should make Adobe pros happy. But if you have missed the preview, you can glance at Adobe Photoshop CS6 SlideShow here.