Adobe has launched a major release of its Creative Cloud tools and services. The 2015 edition includes powerful updates to Adobe Photoshop CC, Illustrator CC, Premiere Pro CC and InDesign CC – as well as new creative mobile apps for iOS and Android, a brand new stock content service, Adobe Stock, and more.
Focusing on performance and multiplatform functionality, the 2015 Creative Cloud update is – according to Adobe's senior vice president of Digital Media David Wadhwani – the "most powerful and comprehensive" release to date.
So what's new for the desktop apps?
Well, quite a lot. A total of 15 CC desktop apps have benefited from speed and technology enhancements. Here are some of the highlights:
- Introducing Artboards in Photoshop CC – a new way to design cross-device user experiences in a single Photoshop document and quickly preview them on a device (see them in action here)
- There's also a preview release of Photoshop Design Space, a sleek new work environment aimed at mobile app and web site designers
- Photoshop CC's Healing Brush, Spot Healing Brush and Patch tools have been turbocharged with Mercury Graphics Engine enhancements, giving results up to 120 times faster than you'd get using CS6
- Lightroom CC and Photoshop CC both gain the new Dehaze feature, which removes fog and haze from photos – including underwater shots. Haze can also be added to a photo for artistic effect
- Illustrator CC is "10 times faster and 10 times more precise" than CS6, meaning users can now pan and zoom smoothly without delays
- Illustrator CC's new Chart tool (preview) lets designers create beautiful custom charts and share them with others via CC Libraries
- Like Photoshop and Illustrator, InDesign CC gets a Mercury performance boost too – zooming, scrolling and paging through complex documents is now twice as fast – and users can also publish and distribute documents with a single click
- In Premiere Pro CC you can create powerful colour corrections by applying Lumetri, while Morph Cut smoothes jump cuts in talking-head shots to create a cohesive, polished sequence
- After Effects CC gains Uninterrupted Preview, which allows artists to adjust the properties of a composition and resize panels without impacting playback
- In addition, the Adobe Character Animator brings 2D figures to life in After Effects CC using a webcam to track facial movements, record dialog and apply movements in real time onto a pre-configured character (watch the Character Animator in action)
- New responsive web design capabilities in Dreamweaver CC let designers quickly lay out and build production-ready sites that adapt to any screen size.
- Adobe Muse now includes instant access to premium fonts from Typekit.
New mobile apps for iOS and Android
More creatives than ever can now work on the go with today's release of Brush CC, Shape CC, Color CC and Photoshop Mix on Android.
Adobe has also updated many of its Creative Cloud mobile apps for iPhone and iPad, including Adobe Comp CC, Photoshop Mix, Photoshop Sketch, Illustrator Draw, Brush CC, Shape CC and Color CC.
The new kid on the block is Adobe Hue CC. According to Adobe, the app "provides an easy way to capture and share production-quality lighting and colour schemes – for video, film and broadcast – by using an iPhone camera and then applying these light and colour moods into a Premiere Pro CC or After Effects CC project."
Kick-start projects with Adobe Stock
Adobe has also launched a brand new service that simplifies the process of buying and using stock content like photos, illustrations and vector graphics.
Adobe Stock is integrated into Creative Cloud - giving members direct access to the 40 million (and growing) high-quality images already available – but the service can also be used by non CC members.
The company says it will offer industry-leading rates to photographers and designers contributing content to Adobe Stock.
You can read all about it in our in-depth report on Adobe Stock.
Big enhancements to Creative Cloud for enterprise
Anything else? Yes. Creative Cloud for enterprise – a service for large commercial, education and government customers that need to fast-track the development and publishing of customer experiences as part of their digital transformation strategies – also benefits from today's release.
Adobe says: "This edition includes all the product features from today's Creative Cloud 2015 release, plus expanded security options and deep connections with Adobe Digital Publishing Solution (DPS) and Adobe Marketing Cloud."
"Two new security capabilities ensure protection of corporate assets, including customer-managed encryption keys and a new managed service hosting option, which offers dedicated storage behind a customer's firewall."
Creative Cloud for enterprise also supports an upcoming release of DPS, which will enable teams in organisations to rapidly design and publish mobile apps without writing code. A public beta of this major update to DPS will be available this week.
Adobe also says: "Content from Creative Cloud for enterprise also syncs with Adobe Experience Manager (AEM), a key component of Adobe Marketing cloud, to accelerate marketing campaigns by streamlining creative-to-marketing workflows."
Creativity on the move
Central to Creative Cloud is Adobe CreativeSync, a bespoke technology that intelligently syncs files, photos, fonts, vector graphics, brushes, colours, settings, metadata and more.
This means that creative assets are instantly available, in the right format, across desktop, web and mobile apps. In short: wherever designers need them.
CreativeSync also means that work can be started in any connected Creative Cloud mobile app or CC desktop tool, continued in another and later finished using CC desktop software.
How much do today's updates cost?
Nothing. They're immediately available for download by Creative Cloud members as part of their membership, at no additional cost.
Membership plans are available for individuals, students, teams, educational institutions, government agencies and enterprises. According to Adobe, by adding Adobe Stock to a paid yearly Creative Cloud membership plan, creatives can save up to 33 per cent over purchasing stock content separately. For pricing details, visit: https://creative.adobe.com/plans.
For more information, head over to the Adobe site.
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