Apple formally announced that it is discontinuing development of Aperture this morning. Jim Dalrymple had the scoop. It should be immediately obvious to anyone that’s ever used Aperture already discontinued development long ago.
Some quippy tweets:
@5tu: The only surprise here is that they bothered to tell anyone.
RT @theloop: Apple stops development of Aperture - http://t.co/iGFGh0qP5c
@bensyverson: @5tu @theloop “Apple announced today that they recently stopped development of Aperture, in late 2009.”
Aperture was dead already. It has ceased to be.
The last version released with anything other than bug fixes was 3.4.2 in November of 2012. That version tweaked Photo Streams. The last truly major release was 3.3 in June of 2012, which overhauled where photos were stored so iPhoto and Aperture had a unified location, and added an “Auto Enhance” button. That really doesn’t sound all that major, I know. Almost all the updates to Aperture have been stability improvements, and patching in ways for Aperture to work with more current, Apple products.
The big-big release was 3.0, which came out in February of 2010, and broke nearly everything. It was a complete mess, and was remedied by 3.1 released later that same year. 2010.
The problem with investing in any Apple software is that they routinely neglect things, kill products, or scrap the whole codebase and just release something named after a previous product. Say what you will about Adobe, and Microsoft building empires on top of incrementally updated software, but there’s a reason businesses can rely on them. Will the product exist in 3 years? Will the product be able to import and export files from previous versions? Will there be feature regressions?
Notice that the people snarking about the death of Aperture and tout Adobe’s Lightroom 5, and for good reason. Lightroom was a response to Aperture. Apple basically shamed Adobe in to making a product. However, Lightroom quickly outpaced Aperture. I’m sure there are some photographers out there that are running things in Aperture 3, but I can’t imagine there are very many of them. While I loath Creative Cloud, you can still buy Lightroom 5 as standalone software, so its a superior choice.
Will the Photos app (horrible, generic name that will cause all kinds of problems when people search for help or instructions) really offer a complete set of tools to not only replace Aperture, but make up for all the years of neglect? I highly doubt it. That doubt comes from their track record in this area. It’s not clear if it will cost anything at all, or just be part of Yosemite next year. I’ve said this about the WWDC announcement before, but it is very suspicious that the Photos app is this far behind the OS release, unless it was something they decided they needed to do very recently. Perhaps some middle manager said, “Hey guys, maybe iPhoto and Aperture aren’t going to cut it any more?” We’ll never know.
Every time that Apple seriously changes an application, users complain. Then people that don’t use the software say that it is a good thing they did it. That FCP X was fine, even though Apple went back and added things back in, so obviously it was not fine. Same for iWork. You guys know we’re not in Peaksville, Ohio, right? You did a real good thing Apple, wishing Aperture in to the cornfield like that! Real good! And Final Cut Pro X was fine when it was released! It sure was! Everything about iCloud is real good too! Even when it duplicated a bunch of my contacts and files. It’ll be real good when my photos are stored there. Real good!
I paid for Aperture 2 back when Lightroom and Aperture were both very comparable choices. I bought Aperture 3 as an upgrade that was delivered to me by mail as a disc. I went through the whole conversion to a Mac App Store purchase, instead of a copy authorized by a serial number. I wanted to get a real update. Even if they released Aperture 4 as a whole separate app to pay for, I would have paid, because I just don’t like to move my stuff! The only way I would consider skipping a future version of Aperture would have been if they did what they did to Final Cut, or iMovie, and released some BS-ified version, Aperture X. Even then, I might have just stuck with it because I am that lazy.
I suppose I should thank Apple for forcing me off of autopilot? Thanks?