Adobe Stock Photos to Close

Posted on 2/4/2008 by Julia Dudnik Stern | Printable Version | Comments (0)

As of April 1, Adobe is discontinuing operations of its stock-photo service. The announcement is not surprising; late last year, the head of Adobe Stock Photos told The Stock Asylum that the service was about to undergo a major review.

Originally launched in 2005, the service struck fear into many a stock distributor. Nobody else offered in-application support for image search and purchase. The service still does not exist. Nobody else had access to Adobe's prime, pre-qualified client base of graphic designers and art directors already using its software. In addition, Adobe offered access to premium image brands, including Blend, Digital Vision, Masterfile and Photodisc.

Instead, Adobe has decided to focus its energies elsewhere. The demise of what looked like a winning business model offers stock providers an important lesson.

Though Adobe Stock Photos was supposed to make designers' lives easier, it did not. The company neglected to offer key features and services available through other stock providers. Lack of live, human support was the most notable, followed closely by supporting only credit-card transactions and not offering credit terms.

In addition, Adobe Stock Photos was limited to royalty-free images. The service launched at a time of market-wide transformation of this licensing model. Increased competition and volatile pricing may have contributed to its lack of profitability. There is no doubt that these factors contributed to the decision to stop competing in this already crowded niche.

Now, Adobe customers will have to go through the procedure of uninstalling the service. Adobe Stock Photos will remain operational for Adobe Bridge users until March 3, when search and comp-download features will be disabled.

Copyright © 2008 Julia Dudnik Stern. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz


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