Adobe’s iOS app failure →

November 23 2017 in Link Posts & Technology

Over at Six Colors, Jason Snell wrote a piece I wish I wrote about the lack of proper Adobe apps on iOS:

I’ve got a bunch of web and podcast art templates that are saved as layered PSD files-that’s the Photoshop file format-in my Dropbox. How would I crack one of those open on iOS and use them? So far as I can tell, nothing Adobe makes will do the trick… but I can open those files in the $20 Affinity Photo without any trouble. Procreate for iPad will do the same. iOS is apparently a wasteland for active Photoshop users unless they buy and learn someone else’s app.

This is a huge problem for Adobe, but an even bigger problem for users.

The biggest problem, though, is inertia. Adobe remains the standard for almost every client I’ve ever worked with. They want all the final print work archived as Photoshop, Illustrator, or InDesign files. And I can’t say I blame them, because the competition is still too volatile to wholly rely on for enterprise.

This all drives me nuts. I think Creative Cloud is over-priced, particularly compared to the competition. I also think Adobe’s apps are hot messes. The UI is needlessly complex, and the competition is almost universally easier to use.

One other note: no competitor has tackled a full InDeesign replacement, which makes switching difficult for anybody who does some print work (like I do). InDesign is an annoying and buggy app — possibly the buggiest app in all of Creative Cloud — but the linchpin that keeps many professionals from trying out other services.

And like Jason says, all of this could be fixed if Adobe embraced the iPad. Native iOS apps that offered proper Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign would be a boon for iPad users and Adobe. They’d offer a chance to reboot the apps, much like what they’ve recently done with the new Lightroom CC.

The time has long been coming for full iOS versions of Adobe’s apps.