Adobe publicly confirms stand-alone future for Lightroom


Adobe Product Manager Tom Hogarty stressed that Adobe has, ‘no plans to make Lightroom subscription-only at any point in the future.’ The statement, made in light of the overwhelming response to Adobe’s Creative Cloud announcement last week, was made during a Google+ Hangout today in which both Hogarty and Lightroom PM Sharad Mangalick responded to audience questions.

What did Adobe say about Lightroom and CC subscription?

Predictably, the first question at the hangout was about the future of Lightroom. Hogarty tried to ease concerns about Lightroom’s future: ‘Basically we have no plans to make Lightroom subscription-only at any point in the future. We have plans to make Lightroom available in its current form pretty much indefinitely.’ And, while he wouldn’t use the word ‘forever,’ he confirmed that he meant ‘for the foreseeable future.’

Hogarty stressed Lightroom was distinct from Creative Suite: ‘We can confirm that Lightroom is still going to be a bit different [from software such as Photoshop and In Design]- we don’t plan on adding any Creative Cloud-specific features that you would only get if you were a subscriber to Creative Cloud.’ Instead, he said, the team was ‘investigating cloud-based offerings that are not specifically part of the Creative Cloud. We’re looking at cloud-based workflows.’ These are the examples previewed on Scott Kelby’s online show ‘The Grid,’ which could be offered ‘incrementally to the Creative Cloud or outside the Creative Cloud.’

Is Camera Shake Reduction coming to Lightroom?

Meanwhile Mangalick responded to demands for Photoshop’s new ‘Camera Shake Reduction Tool’ to be added to Lightroom: ‘We’re currently looking at ways of leveraging cutting-edge technology for all out customers – we’re still trying to figure out how to get that into a Raw processing pipeline.’

‘I’d love to see it,’ he added, but confirmed ‘it won’t be in Lightroom 5.’

Download the Lightroom 5 public beta from Adobe Labs



Good bye Adobe


Right… isn’t this the same company that said last year that Creative Suite purchase option will co-exist with the rental “option” ? No, but no thanks ! no more Adobe for me.


You must see this as a bigger thing. I fear this will be the future model of everything. Apple is doing the same with their software. I tried to get Final Cut Pro X, Motion and Logic Pro in the traditional boxed version. Negative! You can only download them at the Apple App Store. Similar to Adobe. My new iMac has no DVD/CD drive anymore. So Apple expect you to buy (rent) and download everything. PC manufacturers develop the same system and predict, that in the near future this system runs all computers. That means you don’t own workstations/notebooks anymore you have to rent them. And if you are not “connected” you don’t have access to your computer, to your softare, emails, cellphone etc. They (who are they?) want you to be connected all the time and must subscribe and pay for it.

In the future there are two sorts of people: connected and unconnected.
The unconnected won’t have access to the society anymore. Even Stanley Kubrik wouldn’t have thought of that.

This is a nightmare!

Cameron R Hood

I don’t care. I WAS about to buy the new version when it came out (I have the Beta), but now I won’t buy ANYTHING from the till they repeal their CC decision. Simple as that. **** them. Aperture here I come.



You can’t buy Aperture in a boxed version anymore. You have to go the Apple App store, buy it, download and install it to your computer, similar to Adobe’s CC. You must be connected to the internet. You need to buy Capture One, or DXO. They still sell boxed software. Apple don’t.


I don’t listen to corporate spokesholes etc. braying even if the company wants my business, and Adobe by their own admission do not.

In any case, I think we’re moving to C1P from what I hear. There were some scripting issues but I think they’re not insurmountable. I don’t know what version we’re getting but I think it’s 6 or 7 or something. Anyway, no more Adobe stuff — makes no sense any more.


And can users take Adobe to court and win when Adobe breaks that promise?

Also who cares about Lightroom 4, we knew that, what about Lightroom 5, 6, 7 8, etc?


I listened to the hangout, last week’s Grid with Scott Kelby, and Tom H with the Grid folks several weeks ago; and to the Adobe Keynote speakers at PSW in Orlando last month. Know what conclusion I’ve come to? I no longer trust Adobe. As of right now PSCS6 will be the last product I buy from them.


Don’t think trust Adobe again and we will see Lightroom going CC soon especially if the takers for rest of products don’t take up and expect the current subscription price to sky rocket too.

Robert Eckerlin

Great to know, that Lr will not become “subscription -only”.

For me, it would also be great to learn that “Photoshop Elements” (PSE) will also not become “subscription only”.


Too late! Capture One Pro 7 is on it’s way to me (boxed of course)


For those who do not want to “subscribe” just because of the so-called camera shake reduction filter or whatever the name is: there is a plugin in the making that is called Piccure.

Cailean Gallimore

I wouldn’t trust them at any price now – they’ve shown themselves for what they are.

Purveyors of Hostageware.


Hostageware! That is clever! 😀


I was walking down the street the other day and I saw something interesting and I decided to take a photo of it. After turning on my Sony NEX-7 I got the following message on the screen: “Access to this Camera has been denied, please contact Subscription Services!” What the ….! Worse yet is that I was unable to download from the camera any images I’d already taken.

After rushing home I contacted Subscription Services, or “SS”, whereupon they informed me that the $1200 camera that I bought a year ago now will not function without a monthly subscription fee! First Adobe and now Sony?! I hastened to my closet where my Canon and Nikon gear were vaporizing, apparently because I had failed to pay a continuing fee to those companies as well!

I woke up in a start! It was only a dream – or was it? Borrowing a theme from Apples’ 1984 commercial, we need the hammer wielding athlete to come crashing in and hurl her hammer at the “Orwellian” face of Adobe! NO SOFTWARE FOR RENT! EVER!


It is people like you who help keep life ‘livable’ at just the right time.

Thanks, I needed that!


You shouldn’t at so much cheese before you go to bed… 😉

Glen Barrington

Do I believe them? Hmmmm <thinking>. . . <thinking>. . . <thinking>. . .Nope. . .


This makes sense. If they put the few useful new Photoshop features in Lightroom there is even less reason to get the subscription–and people who do have the subscription may ask why they are paying top dollar for stuff they already have in Lightroom. On top of this, there are things in Lightroom, like perspective adjustment, that are beautifully simple and easy, but can be a tedious hassle in Photoshop.


When they tried to force CS upgrades with the “only the last version” gets upgrade they neglected to mention (I don’t think they even they knew) that there would be no future CS versions to upgrade to.
One bitten, twice shy.

After using ACR from well before lightroom one I don’t want to be pushed into some software I don’t like. With all the extensibility LUA brings to lightroom I’d much sooner have the streamlined ACR.
I wanted my usual ACR upgrades and paid for every upgrade CS2/3/4/5/6 just to get them. Now they’ll get nothing from me. I’m more likely to buy capture one because I like their pilot app.

sebastian huvenaars

Adobe? What’s an adobe?…


So this means Lightroom users will be denied all of Adobe’s propagandized benefits of their cloud distribution model, including not having an automated way to update Lightroom software. I guess we’ll have to accept the burden of clicking on a download link every couple of months and spending 30 seconds to install Lightroom updates ourselves, with the upside being not living in Adobe software servitude.


That was obvious.
Photoshop is a $700 tool for professional GRAPHIC ARTISTS.
Lightroom is a $150 tool aimed at amateur and professional PHOTOGRAPHERS.

For every pro photographer that buys LR, there are at least hundred amateurs, who would never buy into that expensive “cloud” subscription nonsense.


“The penal code is the magna charta of the criminal.” That means: if you avoid fulfilling a criminal offence according to the code you can do what you want.
If this does not apply to the greedy *angsters of Adobe I do not know to whom it applies.

Just a Photographer

Adobe Language (Tom Hogarty):
‘Basically we have no plans to make Lightroom subscription-only for the foreseeable future.’

In plain language, that comes down to:
‘LR 5 will still be boxed but LR 6 will be in the cloud’

R Butler

You expect him to talk about the unforseeable future, perhaps?

If you read the full quotes or watch the video, you’ll see he says everything short of ‘forever’ – which nobody can actually say with any certainty.


I have already seen comments about Lightroom CC, which to me says the non-cloud version is most likely going to be crippled to some extent compared to the preferred method of delivery…


Butler, tomorrow is the unforseeable future. Only people trying to sell you something talk about the forseeable future.

Rage Joe

foreseeable future…


Does anyone have links to what adobe promised when CC was first introduced? That would be interesting.

R Butler

@howardroark – Just addressing people by their surname is fairly rude.

I think it’s safe to assume that a company such as Adobe doesn’t plan things on a day-to-day basis, and so ‘the foreseeable future,’ at least in terms of its planning, is a reasonable concept.

If you read the quotes or watch the video, Mr Hogarty spells out the company’s intentions as clearly as possible – that Lightroom will remain a ‘perpetually-licensed’ product for as close to forever as one can sensibly say. I have no reason to disbelieve him.


I intend to give my software $ to companies other than Adobe.
This cloud pricing is probably not too bad for people that update their software every time, but is ridiculous for the rest of us.

I’d be willing to pay $1/day for every day that I actually use their product.

I’ll be taking a more serious look at photo software that isn’t sold by Adobe.


Adobe, we don’t trust you. According to the poll, “we” is about 96% of over 6,500 respondents. You have earned that loss of trust. Why should Lightroom be any different from CC if Photoshop isn’t? If Lightroom had been a simplified version of PS then maybe more PS users would have migrated. I don’t hate Lightroom, but I like PS and my workflow is already well-defined. By making this change you are FORCING people to either never upgrade their current PS or switch to another program. You hope we’ll go use Lightroom, but why would we trust you not to get us hooked and stab us in the back again? Even if we did believe you, when switching programs don’t you think you’re opening up our choices to the entire field of available editing software and that we might choose to learn a system that hasn’t completely lost our trust? I don’t want you to go out of business, but I hope you lose enough stock value to forcefully eject whoever made this decision with extreme prejudice.


Hey Howard – I wanted to make sure you know that Photoshop CS6 is still available for purchase and will be for a long time. I realize that this doesn’t probably address your primary concern, but I wanted to make sure you knew.


But the upgrade isn’t for sale any longer.


Uh, oh…’s back to gw5815’s (Adobe shill) turn to guide the uninformed. And new cameras will not be loaded to CS6 going forward, so that new camera a year or two from now will produce raw files CS6 cannot read, unless you like Adobe enough to convert all your raw files to dng.


Yes, I did know but thanks for the reminder anyway. In a few years when some feature would be worth the upgrade or I want ACR support for the 7DIII I won’t have the option of upgrading.

Campbell 700

If they can do this for Lightroom then why not Photoshop and their other applications? Or is it all simply down to greed?

Tom Goodman

I’m shocked to learn Apple wasn’t invited to this party.

Rage Joe

Dear dpreview,

Could you, please, test all the best software for photographers, except Abobe’s completely untrustworthy offerings.


Apple Aperture with Nik Suite, plus other plugins to taste.
DXO Pro.

For a full featured layered editor checkout the 30 day demo of Photoline, for both Mac and Windows. A well established powerful PS alternative at a reasonable price. The UI sucks but the feature set is rich and powerful.


It’s called GIMP but then Hello, Linux… 🙂 Microsoft, Adobe, Apple… all the same.


Google, please, buy Adobe and bring Photoshop back to enthusiast photographers.

Just a Photographer

Nay, your images will be full of ads

Robert Eckerlin

Google, please use the excellent NIK plugins (that you bought) and the expertise of the NIK developers as a base to build a first class competition to Lr.

Lr is (from my perspective) great. But competition seldom hurts.


would be nice if they added Pano stitching and HDR support (HDR merge)

Bill Goehring

i believe jeff shewe implied in the LuLa LR4 video series last year that pano and HDR were headed for LR5. i’m not sure whether all of the LR5 features have been announced with the recent beta; if not, those features could still appear when the official release comes out this summer


What a love fest. That is time I will never get back!

Just a Photographer

Want to know what their ‘hangout’ looks like?
This is Adobe’s CEO during their weekly staff meeting:


Haven’t checked it out, but this has *got* to be awkward.

Cailean Gallimore

They are now in damage limitation mode. Lol.


Can’t wait to hear the next great news about CC… Ahem. Oh, by the way, the CC sync service has been down for a few days now. Of course, Adobe doesn’t communicate this via their site, as it still says services are online. But customer support and Adobe officials in the forums acknowledge the problems. Wow. What a great service. Guess we should just get used to it…

Fergus Hammond

Just a Photographer

Evil meets evil…


This is going to be a “fun” hangout in light of Adobe’s recent shenanigans.
I might pull up a chair, get some popcorn and watch the massacre from afar.

Just a Photographer

Unfortunately you have to submit your questions first.
Which means that they will be filtered.

Probably you’ll only hear them cheer about Adobe Creative Craziness


Sadly, you are probably right. Nothing like free speech, huh ?

Just a Photographer

I was more hoping of a hang up of the Adobe team….

Sorry if this is somewhat disturbing to some – but its irony!


‘what Adobe has in store for photographers.

We’re well aware what adobe have instore, a new price gauging model to fleece photographers with.

Maybe ask the google team what search results come back for “adobe competitors”


Then Adobe will come up with Adobe Glasses which help you see the world retouched… Only $199 a month 😀

Just a Photographer

I have one of those glasses already and you can see an example of what it will look like here:


Can someone please ask them why camera shake reduction and other new Photoshop Cloud stuff is not in implemented in Lightroom, where it actually belongs but we will have to pay for monthly access instead?


Oh, don’t you remember? CC isn’t for photographers, it’s for graphic artists. Photographers only take pictures, they don’t need a lot of editing power. If you need camera shake reduction you’re obviously a professional graphic artist.


Exactly what I want to know, too. Leaving camera shade reduction out of Lightroom is a bit of a suck-on-this-act from Adobe.


@howardroark: by “If you need camera shake reduction you’re obviously a professional graphic artist” you mean graphic artists are lame photographers? 🙂


“If you need camera shake reduction you’re obviously a professional graphic artist.” Perfect! lol

Bill Goehring

i think camera shake reduction is one of the only currently publicized features that will actually use cloud-based data crunching, as the feature requires the heavy lifting of multi-server-based computation

Cailean Gallimore

One company that doesn’t believe in privacy hanging out with another company motivated by out of control greed.

No thanks.

Henry M. Hertz

google will give adobe advices how to monitor the user even closer.


Perhaps they’ll stop charging monthly rent for the program and charge by the individual functions you use within the program. “Are you sure you want to open this RAW file? Viewing an image is the only function that is free of charge.” “Are you sure you want to save this file as a JPEG? The charge is $0.25.” The more complex or important the function the more expensive it is. What a deal! I never use layers so I’m saving money!


I think we all know what they have in store for us…..


Maybe they’ll tackle something less contentious, like Benghazi.


I wonder if they will give Lightroom 5 the “Camera Shake Reduction” feature to remove camera shake motion blur, or they will keep it restricted to only Photoshop CC, to rip photographers off? This, if ANY feature is relevant for photographers and would be appropriate for Lightroom.


I’m afraid they will keep it only in CC version, so Photoshop CC and Lightroom CC in the future.


so at about 16:30 they said the feature is not coming to LR5. Damn it :/


This doesn’t bode well


In light of other recent Adobe news, this sounds ominous: ‘what Adobe has in store for photographers.’

Henry M. Hertz

yeah i hope they will get burried under ADOBE CC comments.
let them feel the heat. i mean… they work for adobe.

i sure will ask a few uncomfortable questions….

and beside CC…. LR 5 is hardly worth a full point update.
i hope there is more new then they show in the current beta.
it´s a polished LR 4… but the few new REAL features are not worth it.

a radial gardient.. wow… high-tech 2013!!

the only useful new feature is the new clone brush… well for some user at least.


Something tells me this isn’t going to feature many questions about Lightroom 5…

welsh dragon

… and something tells me there won’t be many straight answers

… probably even less of the sort of answers that real photographers, enthusiasts and software users want to hear.

What’s the chances any questions from real users will be met with: “********* is a busy man – who’s got far more important things to do than answer your questions – so we’re shutting this down”.

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