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It’s Official: Aperture to be discontinued

Apple has officially announced that it will cease development of both Aperture and iPhoto next year when the previously announced Photos app for Yosemite ships. Apple told Macworld that “When Photos for OS X ships next year, users will be able to migrate their existing Aperture libraries to Photos for OS X”

Apple has also stated that while they have decided to discontinue Aperture they have no intention of abandoning pros and will continue to develop both Final Cut Pro and Logic.

I know this will be a big disappointment to a lot of people but to be honest, it’s hard not to see this coming after the keynote at WWDC. At least Apple has finally put Aperture users out of their misery, and now you can start to make plans for the future. I’ve been expecting that this was a possibility for a long time, but my biggest frustration with this was the fact that Apple didn’t just decide to let people know sooner. It’s a real shame though, because Aperture was a great Application and some of Apertures features are pretty unique, such as its 32bit processing and multiple adjustments

It’s important to note that Apple has said that they will provide an update so that Aperture will still work with Yosemite so you have some time to decide on what to do going further. Apple has also said that it is working with Adobe to help pro users transition to Lightroom, whatever that means.

I’ll have some more thoughts on this on Monday, as it’s evening here now when this news has broken.

I know that there’s going to be a lot of frustration about this, but I would ask that you try and keep the comments civil.


35 Responses to It’s Official: Aperture to be discontinued

  1. Eric June 27, 2014 at 6:48 pm #

    Sure, we all expected this, but it is still a discouraging move by Apple. In their minds, every photographer is an amateur, or using an iPhone for their photos. I’m sure champagne corks are popping at Adobe today, even if 20 years from now when iPhone capture has risen to the level of DSLR’s capture, it may be Apple having the last laugh. Who knows, but for now, I’m not as happy with Apple as I was last week. I’m sure I’m not alone.

  2. Florian Cortese June 27, 2014 at 6:49 pm #

    Thomas, A sad day indeed for all of us who are so comfortable with and faithful to Aperture. Philosophically, change is always inevitable in whatever we do. I would be curious as to what you eventually plan on doing and your continued thoughts on this. For now, I plan on continuing to use Aperture in its present state. I works great and my workflow and use of plug ins meets my needs. I will take a good hard look at the new Photos app and wait and see what the experience is with it for a good couple of months or more before I rush to merge my present old iPhoto and Aperture libraries with it when it comes out and, I guess, at some point decide which “ecosystem” I will either continue to use or change over to. Cheers.


  3. Jack June 27, 2014 at 6:50 pm #

    Certified by Apple Aperture user here since version 1. Sad day. Phase One here I come. This year they’re going to release next major version of C1 Pro which is said to be able to pump all the juice from dual GPUs of the new Mac Pro. Looks like it will be my “Aperture 4″.

  4. Jon.t June 27, 2014 at 6:59 pm #

    I am very sad at this announcement, even if it was expected.

    My dilemma will now be whether to start the progression to LIghtroom now, or wait and see just what features Apple’s new Photos App will have.

    And I thought I had spent my last ever $ with Adobe, as I had with Microsoft some years back.

  5. Ian June 27, 2014 at 7:31 pm #

    Apple has also said that it is working with Adobe to help pro users transition to Lightroom, whatever that means.

    Sounds like Apple is going to help users migrate to Photos and not Adobe Lightroom. TechCrunch mentions they’ve updated their article, so maybe they just misquoted Apple or Adobe.

    The transition should preserve all edits non destructively as well, so maybe the new app won’t be all that awful:

    When Photos for OS X ships next year, users will be able to migrate their existing Aperture libraries to Photos for OS.

  6. Ian June 27, 2014 at 7:31 pm #

    Apple has also said that it is working with Adobe to help pro users transition to Lightroom, whatever that means.

    Sounds like Apple is going to help users migrate to Photos and not Adobe Lightroom. TechCrunch mentions they’ve updated their article, so maybe they just misquoted Apple or Adobe.

    The transition should preserve all edits non destructively as well, so maybe the new app won’t be all that awful. From the Verge:

    The company also confirmed that when users transition to the new Photos for OS X app, all their albums, folders, keywords and captions will be preserved. Apple also noted that any edits applied to photos will be retained non-destructively, so hopefully the transition won’t be too difficult.

    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 27, 2014 at 7:36 pm #

      I’m not sure – I read it from a few places but they may have all been quoting tech crunch

  7. Retrfokus June 27, 2014 at 7:54 pm #

    Finally there is definite closure, at the very least. I’ve been in the process of migrating to Lightroom for a couple of weeks now. However, Apples decision lacks consistency through and through. It makes no sense to stay in the “pro departement” with Logic Pro and Final Cut, while at the same time abandoning Aperture. The latter must surely have a larger user base than the two former. Regardless, I’m disappointed. Mostly because I love Aperture and I think it trumps Lightroom in many areas.

    Eventhough it’s not a complete surprice, to stop development on such a solid application is simply discombobulatingly insane. If there’s any sense left in Apple, they ought to sell or transfer the Aperture source code to someone willing and capable of future development.


    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 27, 2014 at 7:59 pm #

      Aperture has never had substantial market share. To be honest, in recent years I don’t think Apple knew what to do with it. Final Cut Pro and Logic x on the other hand are market leaders. Despite all the negative reaction to FCPx, a recent report put it as the number one non linear editor in terms of market share, even over Avid. And that’s given all the negative press around it.

      • Retrfokus June 27, 2014 at 11:26 pm #

        Thanks, Thomas. I’ll share a bit more.

        I think the fact that Aperture never had a substantial market share to match Lightroom (and possibly others), is in fact an argument to up the ante, not to cut the umbilical cord. And by extention, when Apple are industry leaders with regards to Logic Pro and Final Cut, why not lift Aperture to the same height? My point is that Apple somehow, along the way, chose not to focus on Aperture, which led to few updates and general lagging behind the competition. This could have been mitigated by focusing where focus is due, instead of beating around the bush and letting things get completely out of hand. Apple basically made their own bed with this one, and knowingly so.

        The question begs: what can one expect from Apple in the future when they launch new projects? Can one trust beyond a reasonable doubt that a project won’t “go Aperture”? Why should I trust Apple when they (albeit unsurprinsingly in this instance) pull the plug? That being said, any company may pull the plug on any project at any time they see fit. The point is that this should never be taken lightly by those responsible or by those affected. In that respect I reserve the right to be vocal, indignant and rattle the sabre!

        Well, it’s all water under the bridge now. Time to reorient oneself and look forward to new and better solutions. So be it!

  8. Michael June 27, 2014 at 8:02 pm #

    I got a feeling watching the WWDC Keynote that Aperture wasn’t long for this world. When you think about it the change makes sense for Apple. It is all about building the ecosystem and creating a seamless experience from device to device. iPhoto needed to be rethought and in that it makes sense to also scrap Aperture.

    At the end of the day we don’t know what the new Photos app will offer in terms of pro features, but we might be surprised. There will certainly be more incentive for Apple to continue developing and building it. Plus sometimes when it comes to code a clean break is just what you needed.

    Myself, I moved to Photo Mechanic + Photoshop workflow for my work about a year ago. My personal stuff I have still been importing into Aperture. My big problem is what to do with all my stuff as it’s best to get it out of Aperture sooner or later. If the supposed Lightroom transition process is fairly painless I just might migrate everything into there.

  9. ben June 27, 2014 at 9:48 pm #

    My thoughts:

    Aperture is going to continue to do what it does for at least another 12-18 months. DCR is going to continue to be updated (don’t ask how I know – I just do)

    With the new Photos app being able to import Aperture libraries, and retain all organizational features, non-destructive edits, etc, I have a feeling Photos will grow in it’s second or third iteration to be Aperture+. In fact, I’m certain it will.

    It also moves all photography related actions to a system level on OS X, which means third party developers will have the ability to easily create fully integrated extensions and/or separate apps with ease.

    So, long story short – until I’ve played with Photos v2, I’ll happily continue using Aperture.

    (pro full time photographer)

    • Davy B June 30, 2014 at 4:34 pm #

      Agreed 100%, same strategy here. But I’m not a pro :-)

  10. Elijah June 27, 2014 at 11:06 pm #

    Sorely disappointed in the news =/ I was really hoping for a new version of Aperture. Up ’til now I still use it despite having LR5 in CC, all my fuji files renders best in Aperture and CaptureOne but not in LR.

    I don’t think I can wait for half a year to see if Photos will be Aperture+, I will most likely move to CaptureOne Pro 7 instead.

  11. Daddy June 27, 2014 at 11:08 pm #

    We the faithful masses waited for apple to make us proud. Instead, they bent us over and rammed it in dry. Why didn’t I listen to the adobe fanboys years ago and switch to Lightroom?

  12. Jim June 27, 2014 at 11:46 pm #

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Apple was positioning itself to acquire Adobe within the next 18 months

    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 28, 2014 at 8:34 am #

      I would be very very surprised. Apple is not interested in Adobe’s market. They have been at one time, but not any more. People have been saying this for the last 10 years. It hasn’t happen and it’s not going to happen.

  13. Al June 28, 2014 at 1:10 am #

    I gave up waiting and bit the bullet on Capture One Pro 7 after no WWDC announcement.

  14. Mark Roddis June 28, 2014 at 7:13 am #

    Having seen comments all over the internet in the last 12 hours just like these one thing that surprises me is the way people sees to have just given up on Apple.

    I admit that I jumped ship a few months ago but is there not the possibility that the new Photos application from Apple will be everything that Aperture was and more?

    Everyone seems to be assuming that it will just be like iPhoto but from the snippets we have already seen, it is much more powerful than iPhoto so is it not possible it will be as powerful as Aperture?

    I will certainly watching the launch of Photos when it comes for this very reason. One advantage of a subscription based model like Creative Cloud is that you can also just stop paying at any time as well

    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 28, 2014 at 8:32 am #

      From what I understand, while Photos will add some Aperture features it’s primarily aimed at replacing iPhoto. It will not be, nor is it intended to be (from what I hear) a full featured replacement for Aperture. Apple is providing a system wide photo library and an app with basic raw editing capabilities to access it, but whit hooks so that third parties can access the library. They’re leaving high end editing etc to third party developers/

      • Mark Roddis June 30, 2014 at 5:21 am #

        Why do you think that?

        I have seen no statement to that effect in the same was I have seen no official statement to the opposite.

        Right now all I see is rumour and speculation and would place faith in the comments I am reading online than I would on all the rumoursI around the new iPhone 6 (which everybody swore was launching last month) or the new retina iMac (that was also launching last month)

        Until I see an official statement that tells us what the new app does and does not do, I think it might be a little premature to make buying decisions based on rumours alone

  15. Dave June 28, 2014 at 8:27 am #

    Downloaded Aprrture on the day of release…

    I’m sick…

    New app will be aperture in features I’m sure, just hope they don’t dumb it down to much..

    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 28, 2014 at 8:30 am #

      From what I understand, while Photos will add some Aperture features it’s primarily aimed at replacing iPhoto. According to Joghn Gurber (who got this from people inside Apple) it’s original code name was iPhoto X

  16. TL June 28, 2014 at 1:19 pm #

    Aperture 3 was the first editing program I owned. In fact it is the only one I have owned. I don’t know what this means for me. I don’t know anything else and am confused by all the tech talk.

  17. joe June 28, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    What does this mean for your blog? any plans?

    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 29, 2014 at 4:47 pm #

      I’ll have some announcements on Monday :-) Stay Tuned!!!

  18. wilhuff June 29, 2014 at 3:42 am #

    I personally find it bizarre and almost cynical that Apple illustrated the Mac Pro’s capacities with the “new Aperture” (Schiller) at last year’s WWDC:
    This alone kept (at least) me hanging in there.

  19. David F. June 29, 2014 at 1:36 pm #

    I find it interesting, albeit not surprising, that Aperture is still being sold in the App Store at the same price. I don’t imagine a professional photographer (I know that’s a dubious term these days) would buy an application of this sort knowing there will be no further development. But the unwitting average consumer may still purchase it. As much as I love my Macs and other Apple products, I think this is disingenuous on Apple’s part. It further feeds my suspicion that Apple’s silence about the future of Aperture was in part driven by the desire to keep selling the product. After all, they knew the product was going to be closed out.

    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 29, 2014 at 4:48 pm #

      That’s a bit cheeky alright

  20. TimK June 29, 2014 at 7:20 pm #

    What I don’t get is, what did Apple do the last 4 years with Aperture and why do they need another year to get the photo app up and running? And now ios is come into play more and more…. well not my cup of thea. You will need 3rd paty plugins to get your edits done. That’s what I can do rightnow with Adobe, without waiting (a long time). Just my 2$.

  21. Paul Tura June 29, 2014 at 7:31 pm #

    Jestem z Polski! To jest kpina z konsumentów! Zapłaciłem za tą aplikację i nic nie wskazywało, co więcej nadal nic nie wskazuje, że zostanie zakończona. Nadal na stronie Apple jest reklamowana! Nie mam zamiaru przechodzić do kołchozu – Adobe cloud i płacić za to z czego nawet w 50% nie wykorzystam. To rozbój! Kupiłem Mac dla aplikacji Aperture. Teraz czuję się oszukany!

  22. Ingmar June 30, 2014 at 7:37 am #

    Thomas, I’m looking forward to your comment today. Really curious. :)

    Regarding Apple’s move: I stick with Aperture and just wait what’ll going on with Photos for OS X. Aperture does everything I need and I’m really used to it’s UI. In the meantime I can explore the market to see what other options I may have. Lightroom is no option as I don’t fit into it’s tight workflow suite. So right now I’m tending to CaptureOne. But first I’ll give Apple a chance to convince me with Photos.

  23. jaydubstar June 30, 2014 at 8:03 am #

    I’m totally invested in Aperture… Hundreds of hours sorting, organizing, etc… My “cloud workflow” is to basically upload to Smugmug my picks…

    If it comes to jumping ship to Lightroom, think of all the time and effort it will take to move. Apple, how can you abandon such a service for photographers? It reminds me of the last time Apple pissed me off and bought out Lala (a music sharing site) and appropriated all my music playlists that I had paid for… They offered iTunes credit for all the music we lost in the takeover…pennies on the dollar…but I digress.

    What’s next, Apple is gonna buy out services like Smugmug, and charge 10 X the cost to host my 50,000 photos on the cloud?

    I hope there is a silver lining in all this; hopefully Apple won’t abandon the pro-/pro-sumer… But, any iCloud push sounds like less for more, and in a more closed eco-system…

    I’m scared! Too bad they couldn’t be better with their PR and try to dam up the leak that has sprung, causing people like me to consider jumping ship before this one sinks… Ugh

    • Thomas Fitzgerald June 30, 2014 at 8:09 am #

      It wasn’t a leak by the way, it was an official statement from Apple.

  24. Frank July 10, 2014 at 2:27 pm #

    Sad indeed. But one more reason to quit digital photography and revert to good old film. Minolta Maxxum 9, get yourself ready for some more rolls of Tri-X.

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