Adobe stands by Creative Suite 3 pricing

Adobe stands by Creative Suite 3 pricing

Summary: Head of Adobe UK says the company will not budge on its pricing, despite the fact UK users are charged a premium of up to £1,000

TOPICS: IT Employment

Adobe says it has no plans to change the price of Creative Suite 3, despite the fact UK users are being charged up to double the US price.

Adobe's most comprehensive package, the Master Collection, costs $2,499 in the US, which is the currency equivalent to £1,255. But Adobe prices the Master Collection at £2,313.58 in the UK — a premium of over £1,000. UK customers are unable to buy software from Adobe's US site, meaning they must pay the higher sterling prices.

Craig Tegel, managing director for Northern Europe, attempted to justify the high price on a variety of grounds, including the current exchange rate between the UK and the US, and differences in the way the company was organised in the US and Europe. He said there had been "lots of discussion around the pricing" since the launch of Creative Suite 3 (CS3) in March.

Tegel said Adobe had to take into account the different strategies around the product in different locations. "If you look at Adobe Live [Adobe's annual customer event being held this week in London], we want to provide a two-day event free of charge around the world."

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Adobe strove to offer the best support, and this was expensive too, he said. He pointed to the customer support centres in London, Dublin and Edinburgh. The "level of marketing and support and customer programs that we provide to the partner and the channel" were another cost, Tegel said. "All of that adds up to being the values we take into consideration when it comes to pricing the product."

Tegel denied that the pricing difference meant customers in the UK cost more to support than in the US. "I think it is universal, but the difference between the US and here is that we have multiple languages, multiple countries and we don't have the same economies of scale," he said. "They [US citizens] have one version of the product that is being distributed to everybody. In Europe we have eight languages," Tegel said.

A spokesperson for Adobe also tried to contradict what he said was "a perception" that Adobe was using the launch of CS3 to hike prices. "Series 3 is based on a whole suite of products, some of which were available on the old version of the products and some of which were not," said the spokesperson.

One disillusioned user is using Tony Blair's E-Petitions website to campaign for a narrowing of the price gap for software between the US and the UK.

Topic: IT Employment


Colin Barker is based in London and is Senior Reporter for ZDNet. He has been writing about the IT business for some 30-plus years. He still enjoys it.

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  • English as a language option

    When will Adobe provide English as a language option rather than English (US)?
  • Fast running out of straws.

    A couple of flaws in the arguments.
    Pound Sterling is the English currency. No use in Europe. As an Englander I can vouch for the fact that I can travel anywhere in Europe and successfully just use the same vocabulary but with different emphasis and speed of delivery depending on situation, so the 8 languages is irrelevant.
    I have also visited Edinburgh, London and Dublin and have succesfully conversed with the Natives using English.
    If fact I have even conversed with US citizens using English and have had little problem.
    Apart from spell chequers witch hardly ever werk, we could easily use the same product as is distributed in America. Oh whoops I have just checked the website and it is the same download!
    As the FCC now allows the word Bullshit in the US, we can all accurately comment on this Adobe statement. I shall do my voting with my electronic feet.
  • Excuses

    Yellowcave - your humour amuses me. But you've hit the nail on the head. The response from Adobe when questioned by our reporter on these inflated prices is weak, to be frank.

    There's clearly no language translations to be applied to software sold in sterling prices and therefore no decreased economies of scale.

    Adobe backs this up (well, not much to back up) with the excuse that it has to pay for events and support. Welcome to the world of software, Adobe. I think most users would rather pay
  • US support package & EU price?

    Is he implying that Adobe doesn't run these events or provide the support in the US? If they do, then those excuses are completely unbelievable.

    What is the UK pricing structure like compared to the rest of Europe? If the UK is twice the EU price too, then that is even worse!
  • EU pricing

    Interesting, samtheman1k. The rest of the EU doesn't pay the same as the US either.

    Take <a href="">these figures</a> for Creative Suite Design Premium produced after the launch of CS3 in March (all figures are translated into dollars using the exchange rates at the time). US price $1799. UK price $2762.75. Swiss price $2495.47. German price $2665.33.

    Each a substantial premium on the US. The differential is similar for all the other products in CS3.
  • US/EU

    So it's effectively all the EU states that are getting 'ripped off', not just the UK. My feeling is that it is more because they [Adobe] can, rather than because they need to. I wonder if the US division of Adobe actually makes a profit or are we effectively subsidising them? As you said, give us a box to tick that says 'support package