As new M1-equipped Macs arrive to early adopters this week, Adobe has released a beta ARM version of Photoshop. The beta allows owners of the Microsoft Surface Pro X and M1-powered Macs to run Photoshop natively. The current public release version of Photoshop runs emulated on both Windows and macOS.

Looking at the beta version of Photoshop for Apple Silicon, there are missing features, but Adobe states that many core features are fully operational. The beta will only run on Apple hardware using the M1 chip, so the M1-equipped MacBook Air, 13" MacBook Pro and Mac mini.

M1-equipped 13" MacBook Pro. Image credit: Apple

There are a variety of known issues, the full list of them can be found here. As Adobe states, many features are not yet available, including Camera RAW, Select Sky/Sky Replacement, Content Aware Fill/Scale/Move, Auto-Blend Layers, Photomerge, Spot Healing Brush and much more. Further, some included features have bugs, including opening hundreds of files, performing object selection, certain upscaling methods and more. For additional details, refer here.

For the Windows ARM beta, many of the same issues persist. To use this beta, you must have a Surface Pro X with at least 8GB of RAM and be running Windows 10 build 19041.488. Specific to the Windows ARM version, users must install the Microsoft OpenCL and OpenGL Compatibility Pack in order to take advantage of OpenCL- and OpenGL-related functions, of which there are many inside of Photoshop.

Microsoft Surface Pro X. Image credit: Microsoft

Despite the missing features and known issues, Adobe says, 'We are excited to announce the first Beta release of Photoshop running natively on Apple Silicon Hardware and Windows ARM devices.' Adobe also promises that more features will be added in short order. Since the software is in beta, it's not officially supported yet, but Adobe wants users to try it and provide feedback. You can post issues not listed in the 'Known Issues' sections found in the above links by visiting the Photoshop (Beta) forum.

To reiterate, the current beta version is not quite ready to act as your daily Photoshop application, nor does it fully showcase what the new Windows ARM and Apple M1 architectures are capable of when it comes to running Adobe Photoshop. In fact, the beta has been released exclusively for early feedback. Nonetheless, the beta represents a critical and important step in the development process and paves the way for what we all expect to be very fast, efficient versions of Adobe Photoshop. Early reports from users of the new Apple M1 machines showcase remarkable performance and benchmarks, and there's ample reason to expect Adobe will be able to extract that power in its software.

(Via The Verge)