With Photoshop 6.0, Adobe seems to finally be pushing image editing to the Web with conviction.
Photoshop 6.0, which Adobe announced today, builds off version 5.5, which bundled the image editor with
Adobe's Web graphics tool, Image Ready 2.
The estimated street price for Adobe Photoshop 6.0 is £399 for all platforms.
Registered users of earlier versions of Adobe Photoshop can upgrade to version 6.0 for £125, when it hits the shelves next month.
Photoshop 6.0 adds Web graphics features such as vector shape object tools, image slicing, and Web-focused compression techniques.
For more advanced Web graphics, Photoshop 6.0 also bundles Image Ready 3.0 but still maintains it as a separate application, making for a memory-intensive duo.
To make Photoshop more suited for editing images for both print and online media, Adobe has added some of the Web graphics features found in tools like Macromedia's Fireworks. Now, Adobe hopes Photoshop meets those needs.
With Photoshop 5.5, you had to use Image Ready for slicing images - a technique used in Web design to separate parts of images and apply different compression schemes to each, thereby speeding downloads.
Now, according to Adobe, you can do slicing in Photoshop 6.0 itself, allowing the user to do anything involving static Web pages - even HTML - within Photoshop, and then use Image Ready for dynamic Web graphics.
To tackle image compression on the Web, Photoshop 6.0 features weight optimisation, a technique for varying compression levels within an image, so that similar colour sections are compressed significantly, but text is not.