BAD BREAKUPS: Adobe & Pantone

Breakups are never easy and oftentimes leave a third party stuck in the middle, whether that be children or a shared friend group. In this case, those of us who work in creative fields find ourselves in the middle of a tiff between two industry giants Adobe and Pantone. Back in December of 2021 Adobe announced that it would be removing some of the pre-loaded Pantone color books from its suite of software applications.

The exact reason behind this shift is a lot of he-said-she-said of speculation. Some theories have to do with the cost for Adobe to license Pantone color libraries in their software. It’s important to note that Pantone launched Pantone Connect in 2020. According to their website Pantone Connect is a digital platform that allows users access to all 15,000 of Pantone’s colors as well as other tools for color matching, mood boarding and more. This shift is reminiscent of networks like NBC and CBS pulling their content from major streaming services in order to release their own platforms.

If you’ve opened a design file that contains colors from the phased out libraries in the last few months you’ve probably noticed a notification from Adobe as the transition takes effect in current software updates. What this means for the design industry is yet to be seen, with the print design sector being the most affected as the color books are used to create consistent colors across all printers. What this means for Adobe is another question. We’ve already seen a bit of a transition from the dependency on Adobe products in digital design fields. Applications like Sketch and Figma (which Adobe just purchased), just to name a few, have become industry standards in User Interface design.

As with any industry, being adaptive to changes is important to success, and in Oblique’s 21 years we’re no stranger to change. If you’re looking for help navigating your industry’s changes, whether that be a brand refresh or a website revamp, we’ve got the knowledge and the tools to guide you; just drop us a line!

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