Are we losing Affinity?

The Verge: Canva acquires Affinity to fill the Adobe-sized holes in its design suite

Affinity apps are used by over three million global users according to Canva— that’s a fraction of Adobe’s user base, but Affinity shouldn’t be underestimated here. The decision to make its Affinity applications a one-time-purchase with no ongoing subscription fees has earned it a loyal fanbase, especially with creatives who are actively looking for alternatives to Adobe’s subscription-based design ecosystem.

Canva just acquired Affinity, one of the last holdouts of the buy-once model in the design software world. And I find myself experiencing once again that App-rehension - the fear that a piece of software I love is about to be turned into shit.

For years, Affinity's users have been voting with their wallets, choosing perpetual licenses over Adobe's subscription-based suite. We were buying more than access to software; we were buying autonomy and the promise of ownership.

But now, with Canva's acquisition, it feels as though that promise is in jeopardy.

The subscription model is a powerful force, offering builders predictable revenue and users the allure of constant updates. But it also comes at a cost: the loss of control and the feeling of being locked in.

Canva has a choice to make: do they preserve what makes Affinity unique, or do they absorb it into their subscription-based ecosystem?

And we, as users, have a choice as well. We can either accept the shift towards subscriptions as inevitable, or we can advocate for the models that align with our values.

The one-time purchase may be a dying breed, but the power of the user is not. We have the ability to shape the future of the tools we use, if we're willing to speak up and make our voices heard.

@Westenberg logo
Subscribe to @Westenberg and never miss a post.