Adobe Unveils Carousel Cloud-based Photo Management

| Product News

Adobe CarouselAdobe introduced its new cloud-based photo management service Carousel on Wednesday. The service can sync photos between devices, and when it launches later this month will be available only for OS X Lion and iOS.

Carousel will include photo editing support on the Mac, iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, edits are non-destructive, and changes to images automatically appear on every device that syncs with a Carousel account. The service supports shared photo catalogs where friends can add and edit images, and photos can be posted to other services such as Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.

User’s won’t be limited on storage space, or the number of photos they can store online.

The Carousel apps will be free, although the service won’t. Adobe is launching Carousel with a US$5.99 a month fee, or $59.99 a year, and subscribers will be able to renew at those prices for an additional two years. Adobe plans to raise the subscription price to $9.99 a month, or $99 a year after the introductory promotion.

Adobe plans to release Windows and Android versions of Carousel some time in 2012.

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Comments

FlipFriddle

Uh oh. Another Adobe product with a subscription only purchase price. Very worrisome. I’ll trust the cloud for a calendar and email, but once in a lifetime shots of my son? No way. Local storage and backups; those pics are mine. Still, I’ll check it out. You never know what it may be useful for.

Lee Dronick

Carousel, where your photos go to die

Carousel will include photo editing support on the Mac, iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, edits are non-destructive, and changes to images automatically appear on every device that syncs with a Carousel account. The service supports shared photo catalogs where friends can add and edit images, and photos can be posted to other services such as Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.

Some of that such as non destructive editing sounds interesting. However, unless there are settings and controls then some of the other features concern me. For storage space reasons I may not want all photos automatically synched to my iPhone; hopefully there will be “albums” that you can choose to synch or not. Also letting other people add or edit photos in the accounts opens possibilities for improper behavior.

Whatever, I almost certainly will not get a Carousel account. I can put images on my domain pages.

geoduck

Let’s see, $99 a year for this service.
A 2 Tb drive for $<$80 and iPhoto, or many others for free.

I know what I will go with.

Sorry, but I WILL NOT buy into this ‘software as a service’ mindset. The cloud is fine for mail or a calendar but for anything more critical, no. It’s more expensive and because you are dependant on the (still iffy in too many places) network it’s less reliable.

Sean Parent

@FripFriddle and @geoduck - With Adobe Carousel all your original photos and edits are also stored on your desktop machine by default (including those that enter Carousel from your phone or tablet) and you can still run the software even if you let your subscription laps or if, for whatever reason, the Carousel service were not available. On the desktop you can turn this off if you want - maybe you only want the originals on the Mac you use as a server (that’s where mine go) but not on the one in your office.

From any desktop machine that stores the originals you can _always_ export the original and edited images. You don’t have to trust us.

The magic of Carousel is that all of your photos - regardless of the size of your collection - are available on all your devices at full resolution and editable. (But don’t worry @Sir Harry Flashman, they don’t take up too much space on your iPad or iPhone). Import your photos to your IPad with the camera connection kit on vacation and they will be waiting for you on your Mac at home. They’ll also be in your pocket on your iPhone so you can share with your friends at dinner. Want to embarrass your friend by showing his new fianc? that goofy pic you snapped of him 10 years ago - it’s in your pocket too. Take a picture with your iPhone and then pass around your iPad so everyone can see - and let them play with editing it. You can keep the edits you like and discard the rest.

You can share a Carousel (a Carousel is similar to an album). The people you share with don’t need a subscription, and they can even add their own photos to, and edit the photos in, the Carousel. So now you can collaborate with the friends from your vacation to build the perfect memory, or your siblings for the family reunion album, or your wedding party to collect the best shots from the reception. Or just share what’s going on in your life with someone close to you.

When your photos are everywhere you are it changes how you think about your photography.

Sean Parent (Principal Scientist on the Carousel team)

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