The online service is part of a larger move to introduce ad-supported online services to complement its existing products and broaden the company reach into the consumer market, Adobe CEO Bruce Chizen told CNET News.com.Sounds like a lot of Google-slamming...Picasa's actually a pretty good product, so it'll be interesting to see how this does. Plus, I'm sure there will be more legitimate users of Photoshop when you don't have to cough up $500 or $600 just for the software.
"That is new (for Adobe). It's something we are sensitive to because we are watching folks like Google do it in different categories, and we want to make sure that we are there before they are, in areas of our franchises," Chizen said.
Chizen said that although hosted Photoshop is meant to be a low-end product, the company intends to ensure that it is of a higher quality than free alternatives. As an online image-editing application, Adobe faces a challenge in providing a good experience for customers, he added. "You don't want (network) latency to be an issue for the user, so it's harder, in some ways, than a video Remix product," he said. "Even though bandwidth is increasing, the pipes are getting filled with video, so the user experience will likely stay the same for the next three to five years."
The company is also wary of not diluting the brand name of Photoshop, a program widely used by creative professionals such as designers and illustrators.
"If we offered a host-based version of Photoshop that's Photoshop-branded (and is) potentially better than Picasa, you'd probably go the Photoshop route because of your belief in the Photoshop brand and the quality associated with the brand," Chizen said.