Photoshop’s high price scared many people in the past, but now Adobe is testing a free version of its famous image editing app.
technology news website On the edge (opens in new tab) reports that Canadian users can try a free Photoshop on the web. Adobe apparently wants to make its app more accessible to people and describes testing as a “freemium” service. There are also plans to add new features to subscribers to differentiate the paid version from the free one.
Basically, Adobe is creating its own version of Canva, which is a free online image editing tool with its own premium paid plan. Adobe hasn’t revealed, according to The Verge, if and when Free Photoshop on the web will officially launch or if there are plans to expand the trial internationally.
We reached out to Adobe to see if they would be willing to give us any information about the Photoshop free web trial, but were met with radio silence.
Adobe released Photoshop on the Web (opens in new tab) last October during its Adobe Max 2021 conference. The browser-based app is a stripped down version of Photoshop on the desktop with a greater emphasis on collaboration. You get some brushes, layer adjustments, cropping, etc., but you won’t have the full arsenal of tools.
For collaboration, you can add comments or make adjustments to a work in progress. The idea is that you’re not bombarding the artist with lots of comments about what to change; you can just do it yourself.
One of the great benefits of Photoshop on the web is that you can use it on your Chromebook. Use on a specific laptop platform might seem arbitrary, but Chromebooks are an important tool for professionals and students alike. Adobe confirmed in a forum post (opens in new tab) that the standard Photoshop desktop app does not work on Chromebooks.
The browser application alleviates this problem. You now have a version of Photoshop that Chromebook users can use. You currently have to pay $21 a month for a device, and if you can’t afford it, you’re out of luck. A free version of the best Adobe app is useful.
Review: The new freemium
Adobe already has several free apps. There is Adobe Express, a design app with a wide range of tools, but lock many of them behind a paywall. There are also Fresh (opens in new tab)which is a drawing and painting app that is under a freemium model.
It seems that Adobe is taking a bait approach with its apps: lure new users with free versions of its apps while blocking the best parts behind a paywall. It will be interesting to see if other apps like the Premiere video editor also get the freemium treatment.
In addition to this new feature, Photoshop is also getting a new Neural filter tool to restore old photographs (but give them a plastic look).
If you are interested in trying free Photoshop alternatives, has a list of the best for 2022including the aforementioned Canva.