Photoshop no longer needs a powerful PC. Adobe introduced a free version that runs in the browser
Adobe has begun testing the free version of Photoshop online and plans to open the service to the public to introduce the application to more users. The company is currently testing a free version in Canada, where users can access Photoshop online with a free Adobe account.
Adobe describes the service as “free” and eventually plans to disable some features that will only be available to paid subscribers. There will be enough tools freely available to do what Adobe considers the core functionality of Photoshop.
“We want to make [Photoshop] more accessible and simple so that more people can try it out and experience the product. You don’t need a powerful computer to work in Photoshop,” says Maria Yap, VP of Digital Imaging at Adobe.
Adobe first released the web version of Photoshop in October, providing a simplified version of the app that could be used to make basic edits. Adobe developed this version primarily as a collaborative tool – a way for an artist to share an image with others, let them leave some annotations, make a couple of small changes, and send it back. Over the past months, Adobe has made several important improvements to the service.
Adobe’s goal is to use the web version of Photoshop to make the app more accessible and potentially attract users who will be willing to pay for the full version in the future. The company has followed the same path with a number of its mobile apps, including Fresco and Express. The web version of Photoshop is a particularly important offering, as it provides access to one of the company’s most powerful Chromebook tools, widely used in schools.
Adobe has not specified when the free version will launch in different regions of the world.