Adobe has updated its Creative Cloud suite with the release of Creative Cloud 2014, one year after the company launched its subscription-based imaging apps.

The upgrade does more than tweak the existing apps, it includes a quartet of new mobile apps and, most surprisingly, Adobe's first ever foray into hardware.

The upgrades to Creative Cloud's 2014 apps are not drastic overhauls or redesigns, despite Adobe's insistence that this is "the biggest Adobe software release since CS6."

Instead, you'll find a number of intelligent refinements and some very welcome additions. The company's flagship product, Photoshop, gets the most love, with a particular focus on tools for photographers. There are nifty new features like a WYSIWYG typeface editor that gives you instant previews right in your document. Adobe added a truckload of new blur and motion filters, focus masking, smart objects that are linkable across documents, improved layer comps, and (finally) introduced pinch-to-zoom for tablets.

Illustrator has a nice new "live shapes" feature that lets designers quickly transform rectangles into complex shapes and back again. InDesign will now let you select entire table rows and columns, and it also supports ePub Fixed Layout formatting for ebooks. Muse supports 64-bit computing, HiDPI displays for Retina screens, and it will now help you optimize all versions of your website (desktop, tablet, smartphone) before going live with it. Dreamweaver now lets you view and edit a document's markup directly. Designer has been given the ability to more easily use CSS property effects. Flash Pro supports the SVG file format as a means for exporting any frame in a Flash project. Edge Animate can import HTML5-friendly video clips.

For videographers, Premiere Pro has gotten a graphics performance speed boost, while After Effects features precise new keying effects. SpeedGrade offers a "Direct Link" color pipeline that's more flexible than ever before, and Audition gives audio editors enhanced multi-track tools.

Four new mobile apps are available to download immediately. They include a universal Creative Cloud app that gives you direct access to view and manage your files on the go. Sketch, Line, and Mix are apps for precision drawing that work specifically with "Ink and Slide," Adobe's new hardware for artists. Ink is a pressure-sensitive, three-sided stylus designed to work with Adobe's apps, while Slide is a unique digital ruler made for iPad. The two devices sell together for $199.

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