Adobe has introduced a rash of improvements and enhancements for mobile and creative professionals at its this year virtual annual event, Adobe Max 2020.
These include more use of AI in Photoshop and the introduction of Illustrator for iPad, Fresco for iPhone and the rollout of a new tool that means your next independently-designed logo won’t land you in trademark court.
Illustrator comes to iPad
The big news for iOS users is the introduction of Illustrator for iPad, including Apple Pencil support. The company says its focus was to make designing on the iPad “intuitive and simple, while allowing all the controls you’d expect to create precision.”
The interface is designed to focus on the task you are doing, while the application aims to provide all the needed design capabilities of the core product, including features such as radius, grid and mirror functions.
The release follows extensive beta testing involving more than 5,000 Illustrator users. And while you may find some missing components in contrast to the desktop application, Adobe has already published its roadmap for future development of Illustrator on iPad. So just as with the other Creative Suite products the company has brought across, introduction of most missing elements will happen — in time.
The app is available now to Creative Cloud subscribers, or can be purchased for $9.99/month.
Adobe Fresco for iPhones
iPhone users gain access to Adobe Fresco for the first time. Fresco 2.0 also works on iPads and PCs. The drawing and painting app provides a range of realistic Sensei-powered watercolor and oil brushes (including 3D transforms, speech to test and a Rotu-brush tool), and now includes text support. The release also introduces Smudge brushes and a range of other enhancements, including better control of brush sensitivity.
There are also updates across Adobe’s other mobile apps.
Fighting deep fakes
Any enterprise that worries about intellectual property when it comes to logo or packaging design should be pleased to learn of another initiative announced at Max: Adobe’s introduction of an attribution tool inside Adobe Creative Cloud.
To be made initially available in beta versions of Photoshop and Behance, the idea is that designers will be able to embed secure attribution in their work to help prevent the use of deep fakes. Of course, these tools should also help prevent some forms of intellectual property abuse. For a company, it may provide an additional line of defense against image plagiarism.
This follows Adobe’s launch of the Content Authenticity Initiative in 2019.
AI and the future of imaging
Adobe deepened its story around the impact of machine intelligence on imaging, supplementing its existing Sensei AI and machine learning tools with five new ML features: Neural Filters, Sky Replacement, a new Discover tool, and two new Refine Edge Selections.
While these will be invaluable for creative work, they also serve as good illustrations of ways to think of AI, not as some magic silver bullet dispensation tool but as a technology that can be used to augment human capabilities.
Sky Replacement, for example, intelligently (and quickly, at least in demos) separates the sky from the rest of an image, making it much easier to try different skies in a image. Another useful augmentation tool, Discover, surfaces the tools Photoshop thinks you’re most likely to need while working in an image, while the impressive ML in Aware Refine Edge and Refine Hair really helps select and work with tricky details.
Finally, Neural Filters is a new workspace in which you can work with non-destructive filters to test ideas before applying them to your core image. These include useful skin tone and portrait creation tools, among others.
Tools for remote collaboration
As you might expect, Adobe is reflecting the times. As part of this, the company has put some work into improving remote collaboration. Its own research shows that 82% of creators believe the events of 2020 have forever changed how they create.
Remote collaboration is certainly part of this, and (among other tools) Adobe has introduced an Invite to Edit tool, version support in Cloud documents and the ability to create and distribute design systems and assets — and connect to third-party apps such as Google Workspace using a set of open Library APIs.
The company also seems to have given some thought to remote education. It introduced in-app livestreaming inside Fresco in 2019, and has extended this support to Photoshop and Illustrator on iPad. That should make it easier to share creative skills across remote creative teams. Adobe has also published a free collection of tutorials, which it makes available at Creative Cloud Discover.
Creative Cloud subscribers can download these updates today.
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