Canva won’t force Affinity users into paying subscriptions

After Canva’s acquisition of Affinity design software sparked concern regarding the future of its one-time purchase pricing model, both companies are now promising that users won’t be forced into subscribing to the service — ever.

On Wednesday, Canva and Affinity published a joint pledge promising to keep Affinity software “fair, transparent, and affordable,” including “the perpetual licenses that have made Affinity special.”

Affinity’s design software suite is considered to be one of the few viable alternatives to Adobe’s subscription-based Creative Cloud software like Photoshop and Illustrator. When the Canva acquisition was announced on Tuesday, Affinity users locked in on some vague FAQ wording that said the Affinity pricing model wouldn’t be affected “at this time,” raising questions if it would one day adopt Canva’s monthly subscription model.

“If we do offer a subscription, it will only ever be as an option alongside the perpetual model, for those who prefer it”

Now, the companies are promising to keep providing perpetual licenses for future Affinity releases, clarifying that any subscriptions “will only ever be as an option alongside the perpetual model, for those who prefer it.” The pledge also says that Affinity will continue to be supported as a standalone product suite, even if some features do get integrated into Canva’s design platform.

“We’re looking forward to accelerating the rollout of highly requested features such as variable font support, blend and width tools, auto object selection, multi-page spreads, ePub export, and much more,” reads the pledge announcement. “These additions will further cement Affinity as the best advanced design suite on the market and will be released over the coming year as free updates to V2.”

The pledge doesn’t directly address some other concerns — like if Affinity will adopt some of Canva’s generative AI tech, for instance — but the teams are encouraging Affinity users to get in touch with feedback and feature requests to help shape the future of the software. The Affinity team has previously said it wouldn’t be developing its own generative AI tech, but we’ll have to see if anything changes now that Canva is at the helm.

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By asm3a