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Photoshop, Illustrator get Retina Display support

Two flagship design programs now support Apple's high-resolution displays for Creative Cloud subscribers. Support is coming later for those who paid for traditional software licenses.

Photoshop CS6 logo

Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, two high-profile programs used by graphic artists with a discriminating eye, now support Apple's high-resolution Retina Displays.

The new versions are being distributed through Adobe's new Creative Cloud subscription, which costs $50 per month for a 12-month commitment but is being boosted by a promotional price of $30 per month for a 12-month commitment to prime the Creative Cloud pump.

The idea behind Apple's Retina Displays, which are offered on iPhones, iPads, and MacBook Pros, is to use pixels small enough that the human eye can't distinguish them, removing pixelated edges from letters and making photos crisp. Apple charges a premium for the feature, however, and its benefits aren't visible on many Web page graphics and with a lot of software not updated for the technology.

Photoshop and Illustrator, though, are on the supported list now for Creative Cloud subscribers, who can get the new versions by clicking on choose Help then Updates. That's certainly welcome news for the many designers who use Macs and who didn't enjoy seeing their artwork with needlessly jaggy edges resulting from upscaled graphics.

Adobe said it'll also bring Retina support to traditional perpetual-license customers. Adobe plans to detail more Creative Cloud news at an online event at 10 a.m. PT today.

The Creative Cloud had a frosty reception, but at least some are warming to the idea, a survey by CNET and analyst firm found. With the subscription, Adobe's software stops working if customers stop paying. But while customers are paying, they get access to Adobe's entire software library and several online services. Customers also can pay $75 per month for a version that doesn't require a full-year commitment.

"The $30 promotion has been a major factor in driving adoption, and we think it would serve the company well to maintain attractive pricing until the base has achieved critical mass," Jefferies analysts Ross MacMillan, Aashiv Shah, and Steven O'Brien concluded in a research note about the survey.

Correction at 6:07 a.m. PT to fix the Creative Cloud subscription price. It costs $50 per month with a 12-month commitment.

CNET and Jefferies