Adobe adds generative AI to new Express mobile app that’s free to try

Adobe Express on both a laptop and mobile device, displaying the same project graphic.

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Adobe has released a new app for Adobe Express, its cloud-based mobile design platform, bringing the same creative, editing, and Firefly-powered generative AI features enjoyed by desktop users to iOS and Android devices. Available to try for free today in beta, the new Adobe Express app allows users to easily produce creative assets like social media posts, posters, and website banners, with Creative Cloud members able to access and edit Photoshop and Illustrator files directly within the mobile app.

The Adobe Express beta is a free download, with premium features like the Firefly-powered Generative Fill and Text to Image effects available at no additional cost while the app is in testing. Adobe hasn’t announced when it’ll be generally available, but those premium features will then be locked behind a subscription (starting at $9.99 per month), which will grant users full access to all Adobe Express tools across both desktop and mobile.

A mock-up of Adobe Firefly text to image generation in a mobile-friendly layout.

A mock-up of Adobe Firefly text to image generation in a mobile-friendly layout.

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Adobe Express users won’t see their projects from the existing mobile app in the new beta app on day one. However, when the new app leaves beta, it will then have all the historical data from the old app carried over in a seamless migration, according to Ian Wang, vice president of product for Adobe Express, on a call with The Verge.

The new Express mobile beta shares the same platform as the desktop version that was updated last year, which means collaborative workflows have been restored if you’re using the beta app — allowing teams to work together on the same creative projects across both desktop and mobile devices. Anyone still using the current Adobe Express mobile app won’t be able to use these features.

The processing for generative AI features is cloud-based rather than on the device itself, but not every smartphone is compatible with the new beta. You can find a list of supported devices here. The Adobe Express mobile app beta is available on the Google Play Store for Android, but iOS users will need to sign up here due to restrictions Apple places on the number of beta users.

Adobe’s Firefly AI features have been available as standalone web apps since September 2023 (and are very much accessible on mobile devices), which are good enough to experiment with but inconvenient to use in design workflows. By contrast, the new Express beta is the first mobile app to feature them alongside other design tools, giving it a much-needed leg up over Canva — a rival design platform that hasn’t made its own “Magic Studio” AI features available to mobile users.

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