Photoshop trainer and author Scott Kelby has published an ‘open letter’ to Adobe requesting it re-thinks its product upgrade policy. The company, in a recent blog post about its ‘Creative Cloud’ online computing service, revealed that it will only allow owners of the most recent versions of Photoshop and Creative Suite to upgrade to the CS6 versions, when they become available. This moves away from its traditional position of allowing owners of the previous three versions a discounted upgrade. The company is offering a 20% discount for these owners to bring themselves up-to-date in time for the policy change.

The move, seemingly aimed at encouraging users to move to the monthly license for the cloud service, rather than buying a ‘perpetual license,’ will mean owners of Photoshop CS3 who might have expected to have the option of upgrading to CS6 will now have to first pay $159/£127/€199 (ex. tax) to move to version CS5. Users of the comprehensive ‘Creative Suite Master Collection CS3’ will face a rather more daunting $1,119/£985/€1279 (ex. tax) bill to put themselves in the position to receive a discounted upgrade to the CS6 version. Kelby’s letter acknowledges there may be a business case for the change in policy but asks Adobe to delay the policy change until CS7, so that users have more time to make an informed decision about their upgrade options. The 20% discount on upgrade prices is valid until December 31st 2011.