Microsoft has been making a big push for creatives to pick a Surface device over the past year, and that's being reinforced even further with a new photo editing app. Affinity Photo is debuting on Windows today, a year after being first introduced on the Mac. Initially available for free as a beta, Affinity Photo is marketed as a Photoshop alternative.
While Affinity Photo looks different to Photoshop, it has many of the same functions and workflows, but it's designed to be super fast for retouching images. It's not your average photo editing software, as it includes support for CMYK color, RAW files, 16-bit editing, ICC color management, and LAB color. Affinity Photo also includes support for Photoshop plug-ins, and the PSD files typically used by Adobe's software.
Affinity Photo has been well received by professional photographers, artists, and editors on the Mac, and Apple even named it as the best Mac app of 2015. The Windows version is practically identical, and during my brief testing it was just as fast, with all of the same features. Pricing hasn't been announced for the Windows version, but you can buy the Mac equivalent for $49.99. That's considerably cheaper than Adobe's Photoshop licenses, and you don't need a subscription to keep using the software or receive updates.