Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) has announced that it will offer the Nik Collection editing software for free, including the Analog Efex Pro, the Sharpener pro and Dfine desktop plug-ins. Moreover, customers who have bought the product during 2016, will receive a $149 refund.
The Nik Collection includes seven useful desktop plug-ins that execute different tasks for editing photographs, such as improving color correction, retouching and sharpening. The complete software includes Analog Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro, Viveza, HDR Efex Pro, Sharpener Pro and Dfine.
“As we continue to focus our long-term investments in building incredible photo editing tools for mobile, including Google Photos and Snapseed, we’ve decided to make the Nik Collection desktop suite available for free, so that now anyone can use it.” Says Google in a blog post published Thursday.
Moreover, customers who have already bought the Nik Collection during 2016, will automatically receive a refund in the coming days, said Google On Thursday, adding that the company wants to provide everyone with photo editing tools, that are mostly used by professionals.
The Nik Collection was acquired by Google when the company purchased Nik, a German-based brand that was in charge of Snapseed, the Google’s mobile editing app. Months later, Google reduced the price of Nik Collection from $499.95 to $149. However, it is now available for free.
Tech analysts from the Verge seem to suggest that Google is not interested in supporting Nik software in the future, besides Snapseed. By contrast, several users are wondering if the tech giant will continue to update the Nik software since it has not received any updates recently.
On the other hand, some photographers have written to Google that the news will be well-received, just if the company continues to offer new updates and enhancements, since several people paid $500, $250 or $150 before 2016, to download the editing tools.
It appears that Google wants to focus its efforts in the development of mobile apps. Last year, it acquired Fly Labs, a company that develops video editing apps for iOS. Google has been offering all the Fly Lab apps for free, including premium features.
Snapseed has been downloaded by millions of users since Google acquired it in 2012. In October last year, the company added new features to the app, such as raw editing on Android devices and exposure correction. On the other hand, Google Photos has already more than 100 million registered users, who can save unlimited pictures of up to 16-megapixel in the cloud service.
Nik Collection is currently available for Mac OS X and Windows. Users can download it from here: https://www.google.com/nikcollection/