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Macromedia drops FreeHand from bundle

The popular tool won't be included in the company's Studio 8 suite of products.

FreeHand, Macromedia's popular illustration tool, has been omitted from the company's upcoming developer suite, dubbed Studio 8.

Macromedia executives cited "extensive research with our customers" as the reason behind the decision, and not its impending acquisition by Adobe Systems--which current sells a competing product called Illustrator. Adobe announced in April that it would buy Macromedia for $3.4 billion.

A Macromedia representative said FreeHand will be sold and supported as a standalone product for the time being.

"Based on the feedback this time around, we decided to make a change.

"FreeHand was replaced by the addition of Contribute and FlashPaper to better fulfill the typical design-develop-maintain workflow needs of our customers," John Biviano, Macromedia Australia managing director, told Builder AU in an e-mail interview.

When pressed further on future plans for FreeHand, a representative said Macromedia does not disclose future product road map information.

However, on previous occasions, Macromedia has revealed upcoming product plans via company blogs and at developer events.

On Aug. 24, Adobe and Macromedia shareholders plan to vote on the former's all-stock proposal. Both parties have previously stated they expect the deal to close by the end of the year, subject to regulatory and shareholder approval.

Brendan Chase of Builder AU reported from Sydney.