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Adobe Creative Cloud 2015: New Features & Functionality

It's everyone's favorite time of year: Adobe Creative Cloud update time! Check out all of the new features of your favorite illustration and design programs plus new features to Adobe's mobile app line up, including Android support at long last! So check out the updates to Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Android mobile apps, and iOS mobile apps below!

Adobe Creative Cloud 2015
Adobe Creative Cloud

New Features for Adobe Photoshop CC 2015


Artboards allow for multiple comps within one document

New to Photoshop, but familiar to Illustrator users, is the addition of Artboards. Users can create multiple layouts and designs within one document. Content can be copied and shared between Artboards as well, giving you the ability to show off design options to clients in one go or house a single design's various print sizes, ready for a variety of products without having to leave the comfort of one file.

Optimized Features

Design Space Preview
Design Space Preview

Firstly, there's Design Space, which is currently in development. It streamlines the Photoshop experience with "design-focused features" that eliminate clutter in the interface. The aim is to speed up your productivity by way of click reduction, mouse movements, and the overall time it takes to do what you want while designing mobile apps or websites in the application. Design Space is currently available for Mac OS X 10.10 or higher and Windows 8.1 64-bit or higher.

Available now with the update is an overall easier and faster image export experience. You now have the choice to export portions of documents (a layer, an artboard, etc.) or the entire document with a single click. You can set up export preferences ahead of time, if it's a common document type you tend to export, to speed up the process. Compression, preview options, and asset extraction have all been improved as well.

New export options and streamlined process

Layer styles have been kicked up a notch too with this update. Now you can apply up to ten instances of select layer styles (drop shadow, gradient overlay, and more) to a single layer or layer group without having to rasterize the styles or effects.

Content-Aware features have been improved with the ability to fill in the edges of panoramic images with Content-Aware fill. Additionally, you can move and extend objects with more control than ever thanks to Content-Aware Move and Content-Aware Extend updates, allowing you to position objects to match your image better with Transform and Drop.

Updated Tools

Adding noise in the Blur Gallery

The Healing Brush, Spot Healing Brush, and Patch tools have all received an update this time thanks to the Mercury Graphics Engine. This enhancement allows you to see your Healing Brush do what it does in real time, as well as results for these tools up to 120 times faster than what was available in Photoshop CS6.

The Blur Gallery gets an update with the addition of monochromatic or color noise, giving your images more realistic blurs and a higher print quality.

The Glyph panel is a new addition to Photoshop, giving users the ability to check out all of the glyphs within an installed font, browse through alternatives for selected glyphs, and access commonly and previously used glyphs. 

And More...

  • Create 3D print-ready content with 3D PDF and SVX files.
  • Simplify 3D models for improved performance, reducing the work your machine has to do while working on an in-progress piece.
  • Moving a layer into a group moves it to the top of the stack instead of bottom.
  • Reduced loading time for the Welcome screen.
  • Check out the full release notes for more.

New Features for Adobe Illustrator CC 2015

Faster Movement and Magnification

Updates to Adobe Illustrator

Boosted by the Mercury Performance System, pan, zoom, and scroll are ten times faster than before, speeding up your productivity and how you move in and around your document.  Additionally, you can now zoom into your document 64,000%! That's ten times more than before, giving you the tools to create more detailed work than ever before.

Recover Work from an Illustrator Crash

Recover from a crash
Recover files from a crash.

Sometimes it just happens: you haven't saved in a bit and Illustrator kicks the bucket, crashing on you and taking your hard work with it. Fret no more! Now, when you relaunch after a crash, your work will be restored and Illustrator will give you the option of finding out what caused the crash with its diagnostic pop-up. Especially useful if it's due to a well-needed driver update or missing plug-in.

iOS App Integration

Integration with Photoshop Sketch
Adobe Photoshop Sketch

Now when you're creating assorted layouts for print, web, or mobile publication in Adobe Comp CC on your iPad, you can instantly import all of your content from a working document into Illustrator and continue working on the desktop.

Photoshop Sketch drawings can also be easily imported into Illustrator where you can scale them up to four times their original size without a loss of quality.

Updated Tools

  • The Pencil Tool now has an option to control the auto-close function when creating paths.
  • The Shapebuilder Tool now includes free-form mode by default, though you can change it back to straight-line mode in the tool's options.
  • The Curvature Tool now boasts a separate Rubber-banding value from the Pen Tool as well as the ability to join new paths to non-active paths and continue working with them. Additionally, the tool allows you to start from either end of an open path, giving you more control over how your paths are created and edited.
  • Check out the full release notes for more.

New Features for Adobe InDesign CC 2015

Adobe Comp CC Integration

Adobe Comp CC
Adobe Comp CC

Like Illustrator, InDesign also integrates seamlessly with layout designs created within Adobe Comp CC. So you can go from iPad to desktop and back again without losing a single asset from your Creative Cloud Library. Everything from text to images to graphics are fully editable and ready for print, web, and mobile publication.

Insert Graphics into Tables

Add graphics into tables
Insert graphics into tables.

Now you can easily add graphics into the cells of tables. You decide whether the cell type is a Text cell or Graphic cell and add content accordingly. Additionally, you can convert the cell types back and forth if you change your mind or are using a document's tables as a template for another page within it.

Publish Online From InDesign

Easily publish content online directly from InDesign
This is what content looks like once published directly from InDesign.

This technology preview is available for users in North America and the United Kingdom at present. It allows you to quickly and easily publish your documents online without the need for plug-ins. Options within Publish Online include buttons, slideshows, animations, audio, and even video.

Add Shading and Borders to Paragraphs

Now you can easily add shading (color) and borders to paragraphs that are automatically adjusted and updated as you edit text. This feature works for non-rectangular text frames as well with the Clip to Frame option.

And More...

  • The Mercury Performance System has kicked InDesign up a notch as well, giving users faster zooming and scrolling times.
  • Various enhancements to the Creative Cloud Libraries including color themes, swatches, and more.
  • Updated PDF print dialogue giving you more viewing options while exporting documents to PDFs.
  • Check out the full release notes for more.

Creative Cloud Libraries

Creative Cloud Libraries

Linked Assets

Now when you save a Linked Asset to your Creative Cloud Library, you'll be able to access whatever edit was made to the main file without having to save it to the library again. Graphics used through multiple documents or even multiple Creative cloud programs will update automatically with any edits done to them so long as they're a Linked Asset within your Creative Cloud Library.

Share Link

Creative Cloud Assets interface
Creative Cloud Assets

Share your CC libraries with the world or select users from the Libraries panel through Creative Cloud Assets. It's entirely up to you if your assets are viewable or downloadable to other users. If they are downloadable, other users can save a copy of the asset directly to their library, making it instantly usable in their own Creative Cloud applications.

Adobe Stock

Adobe Stock interface
Purchase stock images from Adobe Stock.

New to Creative Cloud is Adobe Stock, the stock photo, illustration, and graphic marketplace through which you can license millions of images and make them immediately available through the Creative Cloud Library throughout your Creative Cloud applications.

Fantastically you can also work with watermarked comp images before taking the plunge and purchasing the license for an image directly from the application you're working in or on the Adobe Stock website. Creative Cloud subscribers have the added bonus of 40% off stock packages when added to their subscription.

Purchasing a license for Adobe Stock
License images from Adobe Stock.

Edits you may have made to the watermarked comp are automatically applied to the licensed version once you purchase, so you don't have to redo any work during the decision-making process. This workflow improvement to Creative Cloud is thanks to Adobe's CreativeSync technology, which makes sure your assets throughout programs move seamlessly from each application to another, whether on desktop or mobile.

Android App Releases

At long last four of Adobe's mobile applications are available for Android devices in the Google Play Store for free.

Adobe Shape CC

Adobe Shape interface
Adobe Shape

Using the Adobe Shape CC app, you can create shapes from almost any image your device has captured with its camera. Whether it be a photo of a friend, logo, texture, or drawing, your captures can be saved to your Creative Cloud Library and utilized in other Adobe applications, such as Adobe Illustrator.

Adjust the captured shape with the app's dials so you get exactly what you want from the image converted into vector form. 

Adobe Color CC

Adobe Color interface
Adobe Color CC

Adobe Color CC integrates with your Creative Cloud account to create, save, and access color themes across Adobe applications on both desktop and mobile. With the mobile app, though, you can capture images and extract color palettes from those images to use them elsewhere, rather than simply making them from scratch.

Adobe Brush CC

Adobe Brush interface
Adobe Brush CC

With Adobe Brush CC, you can create custom brushes for Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe Sketch from your device's camera, camera roll, or your Creative Cloud account. Adjust the size, scatter, and jitter options of the brush within the application, save, and use the brush within its selected application on your tablet or desktop.

Adobe Photoshop Mix

Adobe Photoshop Mix interface
Adobe Photoshop Mix

With this app you can cut out images, combine images, change or enhance photo colors, and more! Easily share your work within the app onto your social media networks or send them over to Photoshop CC on your desktop for a more advanced take on photo editing.

New iOS Apps

Adobe Hue CC

Adobe Hue interface
Adobe Hue CC

Formerly known as Project Candy, Adobe Hue CC gives you the ability to capture color and light out and about in the world to apply as a custom Look filter to content within Adobe Premiere Pro CC, Premiere Clip, and Adobe After Effects CC.

Adobe Preview CC

Adobe Preview Interface
Adobe Preview CC

Adobe Preview CC is a companion to Photoshop CC 2015, giving users a quick and easy way to preview designs on multiple iOS devices (requires iOS 8.0 or later) over Wi-Fi or via USB. Any changes you make to your document appear from Photoshop to the app quickly so long as you're logged in to your Creative Cloud account.

Download Adobe Creative Cloud 2015 Today!

Check out all of the updates to your favorite Adobe applications, whether on desktop or mobile, as well as the new content discussed above on Adobe's website. If you're a subscriber, you can download those updates right now! If you're not yet a subscriber, perhaps some of these updates and new features will sway you into checking out Adobe CC 2015.

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