Adobe has just announced support for HiDPI and Retina display as part of Photoshop CS6 and Adobe Illustrator. Support for Lightroom 4 should be available soon, but don’t hold your breath for Photoshop Elements support anytime soon.

The feature was prophesied some months ago on the Adobe blog and has just been confirmed on the blog.

Basically, this is just one part of Adobe’s company-wide campaign to make its Creative Suite of development and design tools the best they can possibly be for mobile and web developers and designers. Adobe has held sway over the print media folks for ages; recent product releases and updates are intended to ensure that reign continues long after the print era is over.

Retina display is Apple’s term for what the rest of the world calls HiDPI: liquid crystal displays with extremely high pixel densities that yield stunningly detailed images onscreen. Apple would tell you the human eye is completely unable to detect any pixelation on such displays. Such high resolutions mean that image creation and manipulation software has to duplicate pixels to keep up, leading to a final product with less-than-desirable fidelity.

For Photoshop alone, Adobe had to make adjustments to more than 2500 cursors and icons, not to speak of the extra software engineering that went on under the hood.

“Adobe’s product teams are keenly aware of a creative professional’s desire to experience the highest quality creation experience,” wrote Adobe’s Maria Yap when the planned updates were first announced.

“Naturally, designers, photographers and creative professionals want to take full advantage of this new technology. … This resolution shift in the new display technology presents unique challenges to teams that support bitmap, vector or video content. Therefore each product team will be releasing support for HiDPI display for Apple’s Retina Display as soon as the development is complete and tested for each individual product.”

The new Photoshop and Illustrator enhancements are the first to roll out; stay tuned as we wait for news of other Adobe updates.

Top image via olly, Shutterstock

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