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Adobe announces Creative Suite 5.5: not a “Service Pack”


Point-updates for certain popular applications and programs are sometimes considered as the software equivalent of Service Pack updates for Microsoft's Windows operating system. However, Adobe wants to make it clear that the new development schedule which it has embarked upon for its industry-standard creative suite of software has little to do with the 'Service Pack' method, and that the new Creative Suite 5.5 which it announced today at a media event held at The Screening Room is every bit a full-fledged release as its predecessor was. VR-Zone brings you the coverage.

When it comes to dealing with software, it is almost impossible to leave the topic of software updates out of the conversation. After all, users would do well to remember the number one rule of software; there is no such thing as purchasing the latest and greatest copies of a application, as major updates will always find their way into the equation. And we do not have to search far for examples of how this culture has affected our computing life: just look at Microsoft Windows and its Service Packs if you will.

Of course, this also applies for smaller-scale, not-so-critical-but-still-essential software, where point-updates are often considered as the software equivalent of Service Pack updates for Microsoft's Windows operating system, simply because point-updates sometimes come with added functionality and features to enhance user productivity and experience. And this is precisely what Adobe has done for its software with its announcement of Adobe Creative Suite 5.5 for creative professionals.

According to Vicky Skipp, Adobe's regional manager for South East Asia, the introduction of CS 5.5 highlights both the company's shift in business model and product release strategy with the adoption of mid-cycle releases for Creative Suite.

"Adobe's mission is to change the world through digital experience…Adobe Creative Suite 5.5 is all about allowing content providers to create their content once, and then delivering it across multiple platforms and devices," she said, while adding that post-PC era devices such as smartphones and tablets will feature heavily into the enhanced workflow in Adobe Creative Suite 5.5. This will allow content producers to spend lesser time on tweaking their content for consumption on non-PC devices,  as CS 5.5 can automatically optimize content for display and consumption on various popular mobile platforms.

"Traditionally, Adobe has a technology refresh cycle of around 18 months. With the introduction of CS 5.5, that cycle will be extended to 24 months, which means that we are going to have a lot more 'dot' releases so that we can keep up with our customers' evolution and changing needs," she added, while explaining that the new cycle for CS 5.5 allows Adobe to "introduce newer technologies more frequently".

However, Skipp was quick to point out that despite its adoption of a longer development cycle and dot-release schedules, users should not see point-release versions of Creative Suite as the Adobe equivalent of Microsoft Windows' Service Packs and wait only for the latest 'point-release' . This is due to the fact that, unlike Windows, the needs of the creative world are always evolving with the introduction of new platforms, and that each point-release is meant to address various new requirements that may crop up in the midst of the company's 24-month release cycle.

"The rapid adoption of tablets and smartphones has taught us that Adobe needs to be quicker in responding to the industry's needs. If we wait 18 months for the next release, it is very possible that Adobe might be out of the game in various segments by the time it happens," she explained.

VR-Zone is a leading online technology news publication reporting on bleeding edge trends in PC and mobile gadgets, with in-depth reviews and commentaries.

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