Last call sounds for Adobe Revel cloud service

In a not-unexpected move, Adobe shuts off its consumer-focused cheap-storage subscription service.

Lori Grunin Senior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
Expertise Photography | PCs and laptops | Gaming and gaming accessories
Lori Grunin
2 min read
Screenshot by Lori Grunin/CNET

I've been waiting for this to happen ever since Adobe launched the cloud portion of Creative Cloud: as of February 23, 2016, the party's over for Adobe Revel. Emails have been going out to current Revel subscribers over the past 24 hours or so.

Launched in the fall of 2011 as Adobe Carousel, Adobe expanded the service's capabilities and integrated it into its consumer photo-editing software, Adobe Photoshop Elements. For about $6 (£4, AU pricing doesn't apper to be listed anymore) per month, you had unlimited storage, and, more notably, could automatically sync full-resolution versions of images across desktop and mobile devices. It wasn't a great service, but it served the needs of the people who made use of it.

No more. And the alternative is bound to tick off a lot of folks. Adobe is encouraging people to migrate to its Creative Cloud Photography Plan instead for $10 ((UK and Australian pricing) per month, which caps you at 20GB of storage; the free CC plan limits you to 2GB. Photoshop Elements users lose direct integration. And more troublesome, Creative Cloud doesn't automatically sync full-resolution files within Lightroom Mobile. And migration doesn't look so easy for people who took "unlimited" literally, since Adobe offers no tools for importing files directly.

Only the files still residing in your mobile device can transfer directly to Lightroom mobile. Otherwise, you have to download them all and import them into Lightroom desktop. That is, if you want to use LR. Lots of Revelers got there through Photoshop Elements and want to stick with it.

In the Elements forum an Adobe employee stated, "Adobe is planning on providing cloud storage for original photos in the future with the Creative Cloud Photography Plan. So that's something to look forward to." It's not clear whether the Elements consumer products will then get tied in with a less expensive plan, or worse, become a new consumer subscription.

On one hand, it really doesn't make sense for Adobe to have two cloud services that essentially perform the same function. But the CC Photography Plan isn't an appropriate replacement for a lot of people -- if you're using Elements, chances are you chose not to use Lightroom or Photoshop --though Adobe is offering a free 1-year trial for the inconvenience.