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Will someone do to Photoshop what InDesign did to Quark?

Back in the days when I did proper print publishing instead of all this new-fangled online nonsense, everyone used QuarkXPress – and everyone hated Quark with a passion. The price of the product always seemed to go up, never down, and it cost a fortune. You could never get a decent discount, even if you were buying hundreds of copies. And support was (ahem) “somewhat hit and miss”.

Unsurprisingly, when InDesign came along, everyone jumped ship as quickly as they could. Quark went from dominating the industry to losing its leading role, because everyone hated them and was looking for an excuse to dump them.

You’d think, having been the beneficiary of this, that Adobe would have learned the simply lesson that ripping your customers off and treating them poorly just makes them hate you – and that if any credible competitor comes along, they’ll be off like a shot. But, it seems, they haven’t. Adobe has just used the excuse of exchange rates to hit British customers hard, again – and, as Charles Arthur elegantly points out, this is complete bunk.

Of course, the difference between Adobe’s situation and Quark’s is that it’s difficult to see where competition for Creative Suite might come from. Adobe bought Macromedia, which was its brightest competitor, and Quark isn’t in that part of the business. I’d be happy for Apple to pick up the ball and kick Adobe hard, but placing even more power in the hands of Apple isn’t something that appeals.

But sooner or later, someone is going to come along and create something that kills Photoshop, just as InDesign killed XPress. And Adobe will deserve it.

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  • http://daycoder.blogspot.com/ Hywel

    I don’t use PS/CS, but this is pretty much what I though on reading that Adobe had raised their already inflated UK prices when the £ is recovering against the $.

    Yep. Adobe seem to be taking the piss, and they need a good kicking.

    Also agree that Apple doesn’t seem like the right company to make a CS killer.

  • http://en-gb.facebook.com/people/Nathan-Pitman/665583273 Nathan Pitman

    It's not just InDesign that has people narked… Fireworks is also in desperate need of competition (http://nathanpitman.com/567/an-open-letter-to-s…).

  • http://www.potlatch.org.uk/ Will Davies

    Are you sure it's that Chares Arthur?

  • http://www.technovia.co.uk ianbetteridge

    Possibly not :)

  • http://blog.neuromantics.net/ paulpod

    Apple? The properly did in Avid (and Adobe Premiere) with Final Cut Pro (bought in from Macromedia if I remember correctly?)


    Apple could do it, especially since so much image manipulation's built into Core Image. Pixelmator is a reasonable attempt from a tiny company. Problem is that Photoshop really still has some unassailable features that are pretty damn useful.

  • http://www.technovia.co.uk ianbetteridge

    Yeah, Apple *could* do it (probably by buying in some promising tech from someone else, as they did with FCP and pretty-much every other application they own). But I'm not sure I'd *want* them to do it.

    The idea of Apple controlling the hardware, the OS, and most of the pro application software would make me nervous – it would be like taking a step back into the mainframe era, when you bought IBM hardware which ran an IBM OS and IBM software – and nothing else.

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