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Wed 22 Oct 2008 08:00 AM

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Adobe targets new customers online

Regional manager reveals plans to deliver more software services to the mainstream for free.

Adobe is looking to attract mainstream consumers by delivering their software technologies online for free.

"Not every delivery method suits everybody - some customers want the box while others want smaller features and are happy to go online for that. You've got to start catering for those customers as well. It's the next revision for our software, with more headed in that direction," said Andrew Lindstrom, Adobe regional manager for Middle East & Africa.

Last year, the company released Adobe Premiere Express, a free web-based video remix and editing technology that's already available to users on YouTube.com, MTV.com and Photobucket for free. Similarly, Adobe Photoshop Express allows mainstream consumers to use basic imaging tools, build a portfolio of up to 2GB and share images with friends and family.

While it may lead people to believe that customers won't pay for the product if they can get it for free, Lindstrom is keen to point out that only basic features are available and that essentially "you cannot replace a Photoshop user with an online application".

Riding that online wave, the company has just released a beta version of Acrobat.com that allows users to share, convert and collaborate on PDF files for free.

By making their software accessible online, the company looks set to attract a whole new customer base that will become familiar with the brand.

"It gives us something as well. Firstly, we know who you are since you need to register before you can use the service online. Secondly, should you decide on going to the next level, you're not going to look at any other product because you're comfortable with Adobe and will probably end up buying Photoshop Elements or Premiere Elements," Lindstrom added.

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