Hats off to Creative Bloq for following up on a strange Adobe practice first unearthed by the UK’s Burst magazine this week: a $160/year premium being charged to Creative Cloud users in Europe who access the service via the Chrome Web browser. Of course this being Creative Cloud, the story isn’t quite that simple. Here’s the setup:
“…we just checked on a Chrome browser on a Mac and it came out as £45.99 per month. Yet when we went to the same site through Firefox or Safari, it cost £37.99 per month.
That’s a massive £8 a month difference simply because we’d accessed the same site via a different browser. But then again, we also checked on Chrome using a Chromebook and it came up as £37.99. Doing the same on a PC gave yet more varying results. On an Android phone it came up as £46.88 – a whopping £106.68 difference from the cheaper price over a year. And on it goes…”
They discovered that when they cleared their Chrome browsing data, the price dropped. Turns out this is all part of an A/B test that Adobe’s running in Europe. According to Adobe’s Senior Communications Manager for Adobe Systems Europe Emma Wilkinson:
“From time to time we run tests on Adobe.com to help us ensure we are providing the best experience possible for our customers. These tests cover a range of items, including pricing and may or may not be presented to all visitors to Adobe.com. We are currently running a number of tests in Europe.”
We should hasten to add that we have yet to see anybody actually charged these different rates – it only displays them differently.
In the meantime, the question now is whether they’ve been doing the same thing in North America. Anyone noticed a change in prices depending on the browser you use?