Yesterday, not much unexpected since the trend in last years in Adobe's policy, Adobe has announced that Lightroom is moving forward with cloud-based approach and that will terminate evolution of the standalone version.

Current Lightroom CC (the subscription version associated with Photoshop CC in the Photography bundle) will be renamed Lightroom CC Classic and is going to be updated with new features and better performances - low performances is probably the major complaint from Lightroom users.

A new product will be named simply Lightroom CC (well, maybe two more different names would have helped?) and will be a simplified (less features) version only on Web/cloud, thus accessible by any type of device (PCs, tablet and smartphones).

Some of the missing features (for the first release) will be: color labels, printing, tethered capture, multiple libraries/catalogs.

There are various plan options depending on storage and apps, let's see them all with increasing:

  • a Lightroom mobile Plan (iOS/Android only) at $4.99 per month for Lightroom CC + 100 GB of cloud storage;
  • two options at $9.99 a month:
    • Lightroom CC Plan: Lightroom CC + 1 TB of cloud storage;
    • CC Photography Plan: Lightroom CC + Lightroom Classic CC + Photoshop CC + Portfolio + Spark with premium features + 20 GB of cloud storage;
  • $19.99 a month for the CC Photography Plan with 1 TB of storage instead of 20 GB (temporary introductory price of $14.99 for existing customers of Photography Plan);
  • $49.99 a month for about every Adobe app and 100 GB of storage.

Finally about these plans, Adobe is also offering additional storage: 2/5/10 TB for $20/50/100 per month.

And now the (very) bad news: the standalone version of Lightroom is discontinued, that means is that if you want to keep Lightroom updated and you have used so far just the standalone version of Lightroom and not also Photoshop, you are forced to raise your spending at least 3 times with $120 (plus taxes) a year, since who updates every major Lightroom version (about every two years) has spended about $40 per year. And many enthusiast shooters just need Lightroom and not also Photoshop or a lot of cloud storage that they already have through other providers (Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive and so on).

There are quite a number of angry feedbacks on this move from Adobe but most probably this decision will not change. Many ones are already looking at Lightroom replacements and some vendors, like MacPhune, has even published on the home page an inviting "What’s next after the Adobe announcement?".

As LightPoint, we're building a guide for alternative products for you, so stay tuned!

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