Several months ago I reported that Adobe was going to release a public beta of Photoshop CS6, as they usually do Lightroom. Today that prediction came true.

New Features in Photoshop CS6 Beta include but are not limited to:

1. There are new additions to the Content-Aware tools: Content-Aware Patch allows greater control by letting users select and duplicate an area of an image to fill in or “patch” another. Content-Aware Move lets users select and magically move an object to a new place in the image.

2. The new Adobe Mercury Graphics Engine, speeds up popular editing tools including Liquify, Puppet Warp, Transform and Lighting Effects

3. There is a new and refined, modern interface featuring dark UI options to make images pop. Re-engineered design tools make creating designs faster and more efficient. Vector layers allow users to apply dashed lines and gradient strokes, searchable layers help quickly zero in on any layer you need, and new type styles let designers quickly apply type treatments to their designs.

4. Video is now a big part of Photoshop and many of the features you might find in a stand-alone video editing program are built in to Photoshop CS6.

5. There is a new Blur Gallery that helps create after the shot blur effects that mimic real camera blur.

In addition, the Photoshop CS6 beta offers all the features of Adobe Photoshop CS6 and Adobe Photoshop CS6 Extended, such as new 3D editing features and quantitative imaging analysis capabilities. These features will be included in the shipping version of Photoshop CS6 Extended when it becomes available.

Pricing and Availability

The Photoshop CS6 beta is available immediately as a free download in English and Japanese. At installation, users will be required to provide an Adobe ID to complete a one-time login and online product activation. For information on how to install Photoshop CS6 beta visit http://www.adobe.com/go/photoshopcs6.

NOTE: This is a BETA – it is pretty stable but I would be careful about relying on it to do some big once in a lifetime job. Proceed with caution. There’s probably nothing to worry about but be careful. Beta means not yet done!

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