Digital Editions Beta2 Released

Adobe is pleased to announce the release of the second Beta version of Digital Editions 1.5.

You can find it here:

The Beta is an opportunity for customers to test and provide feedback to Adobe on new features and compatibility with their digital publications.

The key feature of this second Beta release is that we have enabled the “Setup Assistant”. This walks the new user through the steps of authorizing their computer. With this assistant, you can also, optionally, decline to authorize your computer. Adobe very very strongly discourages this. We feel that you should *always* authorize your computer. More on this below.

The key feature of Digital Editions 1.5 is the addition of enhanced DRM support that provides “content portability” across computers and devices that you authorize with your Adobe ID. (Note that this portability is available ONLY if you authorize your computer).

Note: You should be aware that this beta release includes an enhanced version of DRM (Digital Rights Management) protection. If you plan on using Digital Editions for mission critical work, please consider using Digital Editions 1.0.

Key features of the enhanced DRM include:
– Ability to convert a user’s content to a “Named Authorization” license, enabling them to be backed up, copied and read on other computers or devices
– Authorization of end users’ DRM protected content with an Adobe ID (if authorized)
– Writing the secure license into the document
– Existing content is migrated to the new system and newly downloaded content is automatically converted when it is downloaded
– Content portability applies to both PDF and EPUB documents (again, only if the computer is authorized).
– Resulting documents can be copied just like any other file (if both computers are authorized)
– Documents can be opened on any computer or device which has been authorized by the owner
– The number of machines that can be authorized is controlled by the amount set by the Authorization server (up to 6 computers and 6 devices)
– We have added functionality within Digital Editions 1.5 to support mobile devices. At this time we are working hard on rolling out support for the actual devices which work with Digital Editions, which should become available later this year.
– The number of machines on which a document can be viewed is limited by the number of authorized machines, unless the document has been limited to a single machine by the publisher

Note that authorization with an Adobe ID is no longer required in 1.5, but is *strongly* recommended. If you do not authorize your computer, your content will, as in Digital Editions 1.0, be locked to the computer to which is was downloaded. Adobe feels very strongly that all users will be best served by authorizing their computers. Adobe Digital Editions does not use the ID for any purpose other than enabling portability by linking you and your books. The ID is not used for any other purpose, public or private. Please see Adobe’s privacy policy here.

Publishers and vendors should note that this release does not alter the fulfillment of ebooks so existing ecommerce workflows are not affected.

In addition to the DRM enhancement, this release of Digital Editions also
Adds support for Mac OSX 10.5 (Leopard)
– Fixes a bug in which double-byte (e.g. Asian, some European) users could not use Digital Editions
– Adds support for users whose My Documents folder is mapped to a network drive.
– Improved PDF support, including more complete support for the Adobe transparency model
– Support for named pages in PDF (e.g. i, ii, iii, etc.)
– Page map support in EPUB so that there is a mapping between the reflowed screens and the paper copy of a book
– Adds support for multiple books per ETD fulfillment
– Miscellaneous user interface improvements and bug fixes

3 Responses to Digital Editions Beta2 Released

  1. Mike Perry says:

    Sigh! Here we go again. I mount my soapbox yet another time.Why not allow us to do enhanced but un-DRMed PDF directly out of InDesign, so we can release top quality ebooks with all the bells and whistles that PDF already offers? Build in an index for quick searching. Let people annotate the text, etc.And create exciting new features for ebooks. Offer notify and auto-update functions for the text that lets authors and publishers fix typos and add new material much as we now do with applications. Create a “You stopped here” bookmarking system as good as a printed book. Make it easy for readers to read aloud (to ordinary people) the text, also bookmarking that when they stop. Let publishers tell users inside an ebook (if they are online) when a similar book comes out that they might want to get. In short, get creative. Improve the ebook experience until it reaches the point where ebooks make sense for most people.And yes make access to some of those Internet-based functions dependent on having a legitimate copy. But make the only DRM the embedding of the user’s ID into the text and displaying “This ebook belongs to XXXX” when the ebook is opened. Don’t punish everyone including honest people because some people are thieves.As a publisher, I groan at the thought of trying to keep track the few dozen books I’ve published given the logistics of this enhanced DRM. I can’t imagine many users putting up with that same hassle for several hundred books they might want to own. And hassle means few sales and unhappy customers.Music is going non-DRMed and now some commercial audio books. Adobe needs to follow the market with ebooks that enhance the user’s experience with something they can’t get in a printed book rather than enhancing the DRM. Make the product better rather than the protection.–Mike Perry, Inkling Books, Seattle

  2. Alex says:

    I really appreciate the “Named Authorization” feature. Now I’m able to read licensed books on my laptop too 🙂 Great work!!!

  3. One of the Penguins says:

    And when do you plan to realease a Adobe Digital Editions for the Linux World?.deb, .tgz, .rpmYes! I know it’s hard but many people in this world does not use Windows and they also READ BOOKS.Thnxs