Software giant Adobe is porting its iconic Photoshop programme to the tablet with a dedicated app for Apple’s iPad. Photoshop CC on the iPad will officially launch in 2019, but Adobe and Apple gave a demo of what creators can expect on this front during the Adobe Max keynote in Los Angeles.
The good news is that Adobe’s new Photoshop on iPad would not be a watered-down version of the desktop application, but a full blown one that supports all features. “This is the real Photoshop on the iPad. The Photoshop code base is being used on iPad. All PSD files open on the iPad version,” Scott Belsky, Adobe’s Chief Product Officer, Executive Vice-President for Creative Cloud said during the keynote. In fact, Adobe has been offering iPad versions of its programmes for a while, but none have had all the features of their desktop entities.
Apple’s chief of marketing Phil Schiller also made an appearance on stage during the Max keynote. “Adobe has understood the potential of the iPad Pro. This will appeal to a new generation of creators, who need a mobile tool for creativity. We cannot wait for this technology to get into everyone’s hands, and to create, with the freedom to do Photoshop anywhere in the world,” Schiller said.
With Photoshop on iPad, the application has been redesigned for a touch-based experience. Designers and creators will be able to make as many layers as they want to when starting a project on Photoshop on iPad, just like on the desktop version. Further, they will be able to see all details of each layer with a simple pinch to zoom on the iPad. This will be crucial, especially for those who decide to edit their PSD files on the iPad. All layer properties can be accessed on the iPad once the PSD file is opened, and any changes made on this will automatically get saved to the Creative Cloud. So when a user opens the file later on desktop, changes made on the iPad will also appear.
Further, a designer will be able to make an edit on a single pixel if they want to on the iPad version of the app, which is similar to the desktop.
The Photoshop user interface on iPad will be context-aware, and allow users to easily toggle between tools. The Apple Pencil will also be compatible with the Photoshop app. Creators will also be able to blend images together on the iPad, just like on main application.
It’s taken Adobe nearly three years to develop this version of Photoshop for iPad, that too with lot of close coordination with Apple. Since Photoshop is among the most resource intensive programmes even for desktop computers, this synergy will be crucial in ensuring a smooth performance for the new app on the iPad.
While the exact release date of the Photoshop version of iPad has not been confirmed, those who are interested can sign up to be notified of the same.
For both Adobe and Apple, the response to Photoshop on iPad will be interesting to see. The iPad Pro was launched nearly three years back in 2015 with a 12.5-inch screen and support for the Apple Pencil. Since then, Apple has pushed the iPad Pro as a device that blurs the boundaries between a traditional tablet and laptop.
With an app like Photoshop soon running on the iPad Pro, it will open up new use cases for Apple’s tablet as well and further boost its reputation as a powerful and all-capable computing device. For designers and creators, the iPad might well replace laptops, if Photoshop proves to be a success on the device.
Further, Apple is also expected to introduce newer iPads soon, which could sport a more powerful chipset, compared to the 2017 variants.