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Adobe sees 45% sales growth for Mac video tools after Final Cut X exodus

post #1 of 85
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Adobe announced 45 percent growth year over year for its video creation tools on the Mac on Thursday, driven in part by switchers dissatisfied with Apple's controversial Final Cut Pro X.

The software company saw 22 percent growth in demand for its video editing software across all platforms, as noted by The Loop. Adobe attributed some of the Mac-specific growth to significant numbers of Final Cut Pro X users who have switched to the company's Premier Pro.

Apple released Final Cut Pro X on the Mac App Store in June, receiving an instantly polarized reaction from consumers and professionals. Though some have praised the update for bringing revolutionary advancements to the video editing platform, others have criticized it for its lack of backwards compatibility and missing features.

The Cupertino, Calif., company has promised to add the missing features in a future update, while also offering refunds on the software and even resuming sales of Final Cut Studio.

As complaints over Final Cut Pro X grew this summer, Adobe began an aggressive push to attract customers to its Premiere Pro software. The company even launched a "switcher program" that offered a 50 percent discount to users who had previously purchased Final Cut Pro or Avid Media composer.

Adobe has setup a dedicated website with information for interested switchers. The site's tagline "You're a pro. Make sure your toolset is too," appears to be a dig at Final Cut Pro X, which has been accused by some industry professionals as not being a "pro" application.



AppleInsider was first to report last year that Apple planned to scale down its Final Cut Studio suite to better fit the needs of prosumers. The company quickly issued a statement in response, promising that professional customers would "love" the new version of Final Cut.
post #2 of 85
Ok. If it's not broken don't fix it. Maybe an interface revision for FC 10.1. Seriously!
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post #3 of 85
Apple pulled a funny on FC. It reminded me of the switch from iMovie (HD?) to the new iMovie 08 if memory serves me correctly. Those that lived through this will know what I am talking about. I kept that old version till 09 and was not fully satisfied till 11.

I think it may take apple a few versions before people who left come back to FC.
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post #4 of 85
more like final crap pro
post #5 of 85
Oops! I guess Adobe does do some things better than Apple. Good. The market speaks, a know-it-all corporation responds. Chalk this up as a tiny win for consumer demand / capitalism.
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post #6 of 85
Seems on track with Apple's strategy of chasing away professionals to court mainstream consumers.
Sucks for those who actually produce with the products - but not for the investors.

The iMac changed everything. The iPod validated the shift.
There's been a cascading effect ever since.

iPhone seems to be the exception.
post #7 of 85
I won't deny FCPX's shortcomings, and people are going to continue to enjoy ragging on it in the near term, but every time I use it I find more really smart thinking at the core of the program.

It's not ready for everyone yet, but I see the problems of FCPX as more of a mismanagement of customer expectations than a technical one. There's too much great stuff going on in this program for it to be considered a failure by any reasonable person.

People will laugh now, but I'm not sure they'll be laughing so hard in a year or two.
post #8 of 85
Mmm - this ought to worry Apple somewhat. Premiere Pro has always been most attractive to those with a foot in graphics and web delivery - not necessarily the same broadcast/film market that Avid chases, but not too far from where Apple pitched FCP X. In this market Premiere's a very good product, with acknowledged strengths.

I've felt since this release that the FCP user base would split 40/30/20/10, with 40% hanging on to FCS 3 for as long as it lives, 30% going Adobe, 20% going Avid and 10% embracing the new order. New users I'd split 40/40/20 with Avid picking up the 20% with an interest in the high end collaboration space. I hold with that still. Avid's figures would be instructive here.
post #9 of 85
Maybe Apple should have come out with two versions of Final Cut 10. The first being Final Cut Pro that is like the older version (interface familiar) and just plain Final Cut for the general consumer with the new interface. Maybe that would be the way to go. I am sure Steve has voiced his opinion to the department that came out with the 10 version.
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post #10 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by fearless View Post

not too far from where Apple pitched FCP X. In this market it's a very good product, with acknowledged strengths.

I agree... and what consumer video maker ever aspires to be just a consumer? Very few... and those that do will be satisfied by iMovie. Every consumer that aspires to be a Pro one day will be recommended Premiere or Avid over FCPX now.

Every film school is going to stop teaching FCP because it's now being considered a dead end for students who one day want a place in the industry.

There is some real genius in FCPX but it has been poorly branded, poorly marketed and Apple has given very little communication to it's established customers about what direction it is taking FCP.
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post #11 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Adobe announced 45 percent growth year over year for its video creation tools on the Mac on Thursday, driven in part by switchers dissatisfied with Apple's controversial Final Cut Pro X.



Quote:
Originally Posted by theguycalledtom

Every consumer that aspires to be a Pro one day will be recommended Premiere or Avid over FCPX now.

Every film school is going to stop teaching FCP because it's now being considered a dead end for students who one day want a place in the industry.

Yeah, that's a very serious problem. Apple knows better than anyone that mindshare is a fundamental part of succeeding in a market. Final Cut Pro wasn't perfect but it had that mindshare. Final Cut Pro X has lost some for this brand.

I don't think Premiere has much mindshare either though. They could probably do with rebranding it. At this stage they might as well call it Adobe Gaylord. For years it's been seen as the poor Windows user's Final Cut that they have to endure.

They can rework a set of core features specifically for high-end production and call it Adobe Cinema or something. They could even try what Apple has done with Motion and FCPX with AE and Premiere - give them the same render engine. After Effects is a highly respected piece of software. If they allowed you to cut video in it, they could maintain the AE brand alone or justify the rebrand.

You would essentially have just an extra composition but this would be an NLE comp with audio layers and you would be able to drop AE comps into the NLE comp timeline. The NLE comp would be real-time. No more intermediates, incredibly simple way to implement complex title cards, transitions and effects. They can use the database file structure too to save memory usage and opening/saving times.
post #12 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Maybe Apple should have come out with two versions of Final Cut 10. The first being Final Cut Pro that is like the older version (interface familiar) and just plain Final Cut for the general consumer with the new interface. Maybe that would be the way to go. I am sure Steve has voiced his opinion to the department that came out with the 10 version.

Well, they kinda had that with Final Cut Pro and Express. Express did all the prosumer stuff that's there in FCP X, and didn't make EDLs or OMFs or work with higher-end tape, disk and card formats. So the split was already there - but they threw away the high end, and left us a new, 64-bit glossy version of Final Cut Express, that's waiting to grow up all over again.
post #13 of 85
It's not that FCPX will be a failure; it won't. It's just that Apple handled the transition horribly, which has severely damaged the trust they had engendered in the industry. When FCPX can do what most pros need in terms of multi cam, XML, etc., they will be back, not because of love for Apple, but because competitors using FCPX will be so much more productive, they will have no choice.
post #14 of 85
Pretty accurate

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post #15 of 85
Professional editor here: I secretly wish Adobe would start to take tv professionals seriously and comepete with Avid. There's a lot of features they'd have to implement for that, but that would be a breath of fresh air into my work day.
post #16 of 85
It's only been 2 1/2 months since FCP X was released. How fast do people make big decisions like this? Final Cut Studio was still in the hands of professionals and now it's available again. It's not like Apple took it away from them.

And Premiere is simply awful.
post #17 of 85
Sometimes I wonder if Apple secretly wanted FCP X to fail so that they would loose significant share in the pro video market. That way they could buyout adobe without a problem/probe from DOJ. Well that's my hopeful conspiracy theory!
post #18 of 85
Yes, Premiere is awful because it has a pro user interface that is very familiar and easy to learn. It's also awful because it has had background rendering and all the features that Apple promised to add to FCP years before

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleZilla View Post

It's only been 2 1/2 months since FCP X was released. How fast do people make big decisions like this? Final Cut Studio was still in the hands of professionals and now it's available again. It's not like Apple took it away from them.

And Premiere is simply awful.
post #19 of 85
This has more to do with the promotion that Adobe was pushing when this happened more than it did with people not being happy with FCP X. Had Premiere stayed the same price, I highly doubt they would have seen this much of an increase in sales.
post #20 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Ok. If it's not broken don't fix it. Maybe an interface revision for FC 10.1. Seriously!

It's.

Not.

The.

Interface.
post #21 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheff View Post

Apple pulled a funny on FC. It reminded me of the switch from iMovie (HD?) to the new iMovie 08 if memory serves me correctly. Those that lived through this will know what I am talking about. I kept that old version till 09 and was not fully satisfied till 11.

I think it may take apple a few versions before people who left come back to FC.

I think they mistakenly applied the lesson of iMovie to FCPX. When they made the similar change in iMovie, advanced customers grumbled and new or simple users didn't care/notice. Advanced customers either reluctantly stuck with the old version, or upgraded to FCP. Apple didn't lose any customers.

With FCPX they might have thought "Well people grumbled about iMovie, but in the end it didn't hurt us any". Forgetting that professionals are not like light weight home users. First, they tend to be more particular about their tools and have a lot more time invested in how those tools work. Second, unlike the iMovie transition they didn't have another Apple product to move to if it didn't meet their needs. Third, since they've already proven they are willing to pay more money (compared to iMovie) for tools that fit their needs, they probably are still willing to pay that money for tools that fit their needs. So if FCPX doesn't fit their needs, they'll buy Adobe (assuming it fits their needs).

Understandably Apple didn't want to wait any longer before getting a product out, so they could start getting some revenue from it. They simply did it in the wrong way. They did the right thing by lowering the price on FCPX, but it should also have include a slightly updated FCP as well. It would have been a "Here's some minor improvements to FCP to get you buy for now, and look at this preview release that shows the future of FC." If you were an intermediate FCP user, you might use the new interface, advanced users would have said "meh", and they still would have got some iMovie upgrades.

Ultimately this shows yet again that Apple doesn't "get it" when it comes to business users. In the long term they will have to learn or their growth will be limited.
post #22 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodlink View Post

Pretty accurate

And the same thing will happen to Logic X.
post #23 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheff View Post

Apple pulled a funny on FC. It reminded me of the switch from iMovie (HD?) to the new iMovie 08 if memory serves me correctly. Those that lived through this will know what I am talking about. I kept that old version till 09 and was not fully satisfied till 11.

I think it may take apple a few versions before people who left come back to FC.

It was iMovie 06 because it removed features. The offered iMovie HD as a free download for while. Then they removed it when added many features back in iMovie 08 and now everyone loves iMovie. Well, obviously not a professional video editor, but most consumers that edit video like iMovie.

Sound familiar. FCP X will come around. All Apple did was shift the most ornery of customers over to Adobe and left the level headed ones that are sill using FCP 7 and will upgrade when it suits them, on top of the increased prosumers. We'll see if it works out for them.
post #24 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by 11thIndian View Post

I won't deny FCPX's shortcomings, and people are going to continue to enjoy ragging on it in the near term, but every time I use it I find more really smart thinking at the core of the program.

It's not ready for everyone yet, but I see the problems of FCPX as more of a mismanagement of customer expectations than a technical one. There's too much great stuff going on in this program for it to be considered a failure by any reasonable person.

People will laugh now, but I'm not sure they'll be laughing so hard in a year or two.

Agreed. It's a rough transition, but it will work. People complained about MacOS 9 to MacOS X too. They threatened to move to Windows, they claimed Apple doesn't care about user interface anymore. It took many Mac users until 10.2 and 10.3 to make the switch, but they did and are happy about it now.
post #25 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by emulator View Post

And the same thing will happen to Logic X.

Logic already had its architecture upgrade in the last version. Rumors are that it's not a complete redesign.
post #26 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by z3r0 View Post

. That way they could buyout adobe without a problem/probe from DOJ. Well that's my hopeful conspiracy theory!


Adobe is lazy, so they wouldn't fit into Apple's corporate culture. And besides, Apple is all about open standards. No way do they want anything to do with Flash when HTML5 can do it all so much better.
post #27 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Adobe announced 45 percent growth year over year for its video creation tools on the Mac on Thursday, driven in part by switchers dissatisfied with Apple's controversial Final Cut Pro X.

Adobe probably had 5% of the Mac market for video editing. So basically they increased to 7.5%.

45% sound big but rather it sounds like Adobe is trying to pull the wool over our eyes.

Come on Adobe. Tells us how many copies you sold? Marketshare? Something meaningful?
post #28 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The Cupertino, Calif., company has promised to add the missing features in a future update...

Not true, they promised to add SOME of the missing features but said that others likely wouldn't return or would require third party add-ons to get the functionality back.


Quote:
Originally Posted by 11thIndian View Post

It's not ready for everyone yet, but I see the problems of FCPX as more of a mismanagement of customer expectations than a technical one.

Good point. The reaction would have been much different if they had continued selling FCS and released X as a free or heavily discounted public beta.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleZilla View Post

It's not like Apple took it away from them.

Well, they DID take it away, and only made it available after the huge outcry. And it wasn't fully made available, just to certain customers (maybe they've changed that since then, I don't know). Do you see the previous version of FCS on the apple store or otherwise available for sale to the general public?


Quote:
Originally Posted by emulator View Post

And the same thing will happen to Logic X.

No reason to believe that if you've actually used Logic and are familiar with that software's history. That's just an uninformed knee jerk reaction to any product name that has an X in it.
post #29 of 85
This totally depends on how much Premiere Pro sold last year. Notice how Adobe doesn't actually give any hard sales numbers.

45% can sound like a big number, but wouldn't actually be all that much if Premiere Pro was never selling that well to begin with.
post #30 of 85
I would agree with this only if FCP X fails to deliver on introducing new features that the market finds exciting.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

Yeah, that's a very serious problem. Apple knows better than anyone that mindshare is a fundamental part of succeeding in a market. Final Cut Pro wasn't perfect but it had that mindshare. Final Cut Pro X has lost some for this brand.
post #31 of 85
Here's a good read:

Why is making software smarter dumbing it down?

Quote:
So, Final Cut Pro X does what every technology does: moves from the realm of the specialist, skilled crafstperson out into the wider group of people who need smarter tools that wont let them get into trouble. A skilled mechanic bemoans the fact that they cant tinker with modern cars, and race-car drivers have very different needs than the average driver, there are those who need a fine-tuned vehicle, the general purpose vehicle that requires no knowledge of how the engine works in order to drive for pleasure or in fact to drive for a living. No special skills or knowledge needed. Were not *there* yet with video editing but were heading there.

For those who want to tinker, or need a race car, the smarter dumbing down software is a threat or at best as useless as a Smart Car on a race track. But for everyone else the vast majority of drivers the dumbed down modern car is a big improvement.
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post #32 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustav View Post

...now everyone loves iMovie.

Yeah but it took what, 3 years, for them to fix it? Apple doesn't live in a vacuum. There have been grumblings for awhile that Apple was neglecting the professional market. They knew that. So what do they do? They release FCX gasoline to pour on that fire.

I am not sure how anyone could not consider FCX's launch a complete failure. Over time, it will probably get fixed but there is no doubt Apple will have lost a lot of video professionals by the time that happens and they won't come back.

-kpluck

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post #33 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by kpluck View Post

Yeah but it took what, 3 years, for them to fix it? Apple doesn't live in a vacuum. There have been grumblings for awhile that Apple was neglecting the professional market. They knew that. So what do they do? They release FCX gasoline to pour on that fire.

This is analogues to the iPhone. When the iPhone was first introduced there was nothing like it. Still people complained that it did not have this or that. The reason it did not have this or that is because Apple was building something completely new that no one else had ever done before.

The iPhone didn't need to be fixed - it wasn't broken. It was being developed.

Its the same with iMove and FCP X. They are completely new products. They aren't broken per se, they are being further developed. Its like saying FCP version 1 was broken in comparison to FCP version 7.

Quote:
I am not sure how anyone could not consider FCX's launch a complete failure.

How are you measuring failure? In business terms failure is measured by sales not by a bunch of cackling on internet blogs. From all indications FCP X has sold very well.

Quote:
Over time, it will probably get fixed but there is no doubt Apple will have lost a lot of video professionals by the time that happens and they won't come back.

To give you some perspective on FCP in the video market. Video equipment manufacturers are making equipment with Quick Time and Apple Pro Res codecs built into the equipment so that they can easily create video that can be edited immediately in FCP. This is being done to some degree for Avid, Avid has also had to support Pro Res because its such a widely used codec. But this isn't being done to the same degree for any other NLE.

This 45% boost for Adobe Premiere Pro likely means they went from hardly any sales to actually a few sales. Likely hardly a dent in the FCP user base.
post #34 of 85
I was fooling around with lots of things open -- so I thought I see what was hitting the CPU the hardest:



This is on a maxed-out iMac 27 3.4 GHz I7, 16GB RAM

-- I have about 60 Safari windows, 12 0pen, 1 with 20 tabs.

-- No Safari windows using Flash are open, so Flash isn't doing anything.

-- FCPX isn't doing anything either.

-- but FCPX isn't doing anything a lot more efficiently than Flash isn't doing anything


As I understand it, one of the reason FCPX performs so well is that it uses AVFoundation -- and, AVFoundation was developed for iOS, then ported back to Mac OS X.

I don't know if Adobe plans to (or can) take advantage of this technology in Flash and their Pro A/V tools.

Introducing AV Foundation and the future of QuickTime [Updated]
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post #35 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

Its the same with iMove and FCP X. They are completely new products. They aren't broken per se, they are being further developed. Its like saying FCP version 1 was broken in comparison to FCP version 7.

Really? FCP X replaced FCP 7. Which Apple product did the iPhone replace?
post #36 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Conrail View Post

Really? FCP X replaced FCP 7. Which Apple product did the iPhone replace?

You know as well as any of us that FCPX didn't replace FCP 7!

I think Apple totally misread and mishandled the situation.

But, there are enough respected pros who realize that :

-- the game is just beginning
-- post is evolving rather quickly
-- NLE software, FCP 7 in particular, doesn't even exploit current technology
-- technology offers the potential to remove/reduce the tedium and allow the pro to concentrate on story telling

I believe that the goals of FCPX are to address the above, and provide a basis for the next decade of editing and a whole new breed of "pros".


FCPX is off to a rocky start -- and Apple burned some bridges...

Now, what remains is for Apple to deliver on the [unfulfilled] promises of FCPX.

... I am betting that they will!


Hey, Apple -- this would be a really good month to provide the 1st FCPX update -- and get off that .0 release level. (One of the promises of FCPX is that it will be easier to upgrade it more frequently).
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post #37 of 85
Your question makes no sense. It seems you don't understand what I was talking about in my example.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Conrail View Post

Really? FCP X replaced FCP 7. Which Apple product did the iPhone replace?
post #38 of 85
Why Apple cared to RETHINK the FCP codebase, and start from a clean slate, missing some features in the process? (most to be added in the next version).

It took MONEY (engineers don't come cheap), original thinking, RE-thinking the problem space, time, and even annoyed some monkey editors...

Why couldn't they just pile a few new features on an the same old bloated program and sell it as a brand new version?

It sure works for Adobe...
post #39 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleZilla View Post

It's only been 2 1/2 months since FCP X was released. How fast do people make big decisions like this? Final Cut Studio was still in the hands of professionals and now it's available again. It's not like Apple took it away from them.

Well, people making changes like those are not professionals.

Professionals editing studios don't change software for years, let alone jump platform in 3 months...
post #40 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Maybe Apple should have come out with two versions of Final Cut 10. The first being Final Cut Pro that is like the older version (interface familiar) and just plain Final Cut for the general consumer with the new interface. Maybe that would be the way to go. I am sure Steve has voiced his opinion to the department that came out with the 10 version.

It's not the interface that's the problem - it's the missing features, and the non-compatibility with the old version, so old footage can't be re-used for new projects. The features will apparently (mostly) be added later, but the non-compatibility won't be fixed.
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