March 23, 2012
By Paul Betlem, Senior Director of Engineering, Digital Publishing
With Friday’s launch of the new iPad and its stunning retina display, the future of Digital Publishing Suite has gotten even brighter. This hardware sets an incredibly high bar for delivering an immersive, high fidelity user experience with digital media. The new iPad features an unmatched resolution of 2,048 x 1,536 with a dense 264 pixels per inch for its 9.5 inch screen. In short, these specifications translate to text that is incredibly crisp and images with amazing detail. Upon interacting with the content, Digital Publishing Suite takes full advantage of the new processing power under the hood by offering a highly responsive and smooth experience.
The Digital Publishing Suite team has been hard at work enhancing the technology to ensure it takes full advantage of the new iPad. In this case, we added a number of improvements and optimizations to fully leverage the new hardware. Here are a few examples. We added a new set of high-resolution graphical assets to the viewer application’s user interface so that it has a clean look and feel alongside new HD content. We also made content authoring improvements to ensure that the automatically generated previews and thumbnails in the folio leverage high-resolution versions to match the content. As an example, the generated image assets in the interactive overlays will now match the resolution of the source content. A third area of investment was ensuring that the content with the correct target resolution is seamlessly delivered to the end-user based on the tablet’s hardware capabilities. As you can see, our primary focus was to make sure that all aspects of the experience with your digital content match the high expectations on a retina-based device.
To ensure that Digital Publishing Suite was ready for primetime with the launch of the new iPad, we had the opportunity to partner with our largest customer, Conde Nast. Conde Nast has a long history of collaborating with the Digital Publishing Suite team to help them deliver innovative digital experiences for their customers. This case was no different given their desire to offer a high definition version of their April issue of Vogue on the same day as hardware availability. If you haven’t had an opportunity to check out this issue, I encourage you to do so. The text is absolutely pristine and delightful to read as its not pixel-based. I’ve also found that the high res images are so detailed, you can actually get a sense for the feel of the materials and fabrics just by looking at them. It’s an impressive example of things to come.
Finally, I’d like to share a few tips and tricks as you begin creating high definition content for the new iPad. First, you’ll need to upgrade your viewer app to v19 to enable support for the retina display. Second, we recommend you leverage PDF as the target format for your articles. PDF offers the benefits of content fidelity and reasonable file size for high-def content as it’s based on vector graphics. Third, be sure to leverage renditions for your multi-folio apps. The Digital Publishing Suite content viewer will automatically download the rendition that is optimized for a given device. One final tip – be sure to use the same publish date for both your high res and standard res versions of your folios. If you’d like more detail, please read the “New iPad, New Digital Publishing Suite workflows” best practices document created by Colin Fleming, Digital Publishing Suite Evangelist
I hope you’re as excited as we are about the new opportunities to deliver the next generation of digital media experiences with DPS.
March 20, 2012
We are excited to announce the latest features designed for Digital Publishing Suite users. These updates are designed to help drive in-app sales and provide interactive capabilities for enhancing the immersive reading experience.
Analytics Dashboard Includes HTML5 Documents
Understanding what content is most popular and how long your readers are accessing it is important in driving content strategy. Thus far, you have been able to capture analytics for .folio files that include PNG, JPEG, and PDF content and view integrated metrics in the dashboard. However, most advertisements are delivered with HTML. Now you can track analytics associated with HTML content consumed on iOS and Android devices and integrate the metrics into your existing analytics package. This is especially helpful to publishers that want to track analytics on advertisements built with HTML so that the advertisers know how often the page has been viewed by readers. Contact your representative to learn how to set this up.
Restricted Distribution for Paid Folios (Enterprise Edition Only)
Last release, we provided restricted distribution for free .folios in order to deliver unique content to a select group of people based on customer profile or log-in credentials. You may recall that sales organizations use this feature so that a salesperson only sees relevant and needed content without the clutter of extraneous information. For example, a salesperson may only need .folios designed for his geography and specialty.
Membership organizations also use restricted distribution, but need to include retail .folios in the app. For example, most medical associations have a public facing journal that is free for members and costs a fee for the general public. Most associations want to provide exclusive content to their members, not visible by the public, in addition to the core publication. Once a member has signed in with her log-in credentials, restricted distribution allows the membership organization to “turn on” or provide member-only .folios. Now that Digital Publishing Suite supports restricted distribution of paid .folios, membership organizations can do the following within the same app:
1) Sell the journal to the general public
2) Provide members free access to the journal
3) Deliver exclusive content to members within the same viewer – without being viewed by the general public
When a customer signs in to the viewer, an entitlement server determines which .folios are available for download and/or purchase based on account type. Publishers do not need to use a custom HTML store to make retail .folios available.
END USER FEATURES
Within Content Viewer, readers can now bookmark an article in a .folio on their iOS and Android devices in order to reference the article at a later time. Consumers will be able to add bookmarks to articles, jump to the bookmarked article, and then delete the bookmarks when they are done. The publisher can enable bookmarking capabilities by selecting “Bookmarks enabled” in Viewer Builder.
In order to open up memory on readers’ tablets, we have created the ability to auto-archive .folios in the app library. Within Viewer Builder, publishers can set a limit on the number of .folios that are immediately viewable in the library. Because readers often download a mix of back issues and recent releases, auto-archiving is based on the date that the reader downloaded the .folio, and not on the publication date. Consumers who choose to opt into auto-archiving will find that, if they exceed the limit set by the publisher as they download a new issue, the .folio that has been downloaded for the longest period of time will be automatically archived to the cloud.
Watch the video below. You will notice that, if the reader chooses to restore purchase, he can still re-download archived folios. Because there is a fixed limit to the number of .folios in the library, the next .folio in the hierarchy will be automatically archived. Learn how to set up auto-archiving at Bob Bringhurst’s Digital Publishing Suite help site.
Navigation Bar Expanded (Enterprise only)
The navigation bar at the bottom of the content viewer now supports eight slots that can be all be customized for your readers’ needs.
DESIGN AND INTERACTIVITY
Smooth Scrolling Layouts
Prior to this release, if you wanted to create a smooth scrolling layout, it would recognize both layouts as landscape because its height was always longer than its width. Today Folio Builder recognizes (for example) 1024×2000 as a landscape smooth scrolling layout, and 768×2000 as a portrait smooth scrolling layout. Visit Bob Bringhurst’s help site to learn how to set up smooth scrolling.
Currently, to create scrollable frames publishers have been using the “Pan Only” feature in the Pan & Zoom overlay type as a work around. Now, there is a new panel section that is specifically designed for scrollable frames, and it allows designers to hide the scroll bar. The Adobe team has provided more flexibility for positioning content in the scrollable frame. Up until this point, content placed in the scrollable frame defaulted to the top left corner. Now, designers can choose where the starting point is, which is beneficial for content that needs to be read or seen from right to left, such as Japanese writing. It also allows designers to create an image that slides from the left side of the screen to the right, or from the top of the screen to the bottom. And yes, you can start the scrolling frame from the middle, too.
Watch the video below, which provides examples of:
1) Scrolling from right to left
2) Scrolling left to right
3) Scrolling from the middle, moving right, left, up and down
Linking Articles to Custom Store (Enterprise Only)
Upselling and cross-selling content within the app is essential for driving new revenue streams with publishers’ existing customer base. Digital Publishing Suite enables linking from within an article to the custom HTML store within the app. If you have an article that mentions a special edition (e.g. National Geographic’s 50 Best Photographs or Backpacker’s Gear Guide) the reader can follow a link to the HTML store where she could purchase the special edition immediately.
The new iPad
The new iPad comes out on March 16th! Digital Publishing Suite will enable publishers and content creators to build high resolution applications that take full advantage of the new A5X processer, support for 1080p video output and more intensive pixel density. The new iPad screen has twice the resolution of iPad 1 and 2. Publishers can immediately begin testing and previewing content for the new iPad using the generic Content Viewer. Stay tuned for more information on new iPad design best practices.
March 19, 2012
Vogue, built with Adobe Digital Publishing Suite, was released on the new iPad on Friday. It’s apropos that Vogue would be a trendsetter and lead the publishing industry into the new iPad era. Both fashion and publishing build their business on stunning photography, which is enhanced by the new iPad’s retina display. With four times the pixel density, it makes every image pop: runway shots that exhibit vibrant displays of cutting edge fashion, rich and colorful video of Jennifer Lopez’s cover shoot, captivating photographs by Annie Leibovitz, and crisp typography throughout. Also, after I downloaded it on my new iPad, the folio installed incredibly fast.
When you open up the app on the new iPad, check out the ads. Tablet ads are already worth more, because of the audience that they reach and the type of content that they sit alongside. The rich colors in Revlon makeup ads are eye catching, drawing in the attention of a premium audience. The crystal clear, backlit Versace image has a veritable glow.
Below is screenshot of the Jennifer Lopez video, followed by a comparison of two images: one with the iPad 2 (top) and one with the new iPad (bottom). Check out the resolution on the typography. This level of detail, even in the photo captions, gives the layout an even cleaner, crisper look and feel.
Stay tuned. We’ll talk more about Vogue on the new iPad this week, and what this means for the publishing industry. In the meantime…
February 23, 2012
Discoverability is essential for creating new revenue streams and growing circulation for digital publications. If you have downloaded the latest version of Adobe Digital Publishing Suite, you’ll know you can now use Viewer Builder to showcase free subscriptions in iOS Newsstand.
I turned on my iPad this morning and was excited to find iGizmo on my Newsstand. You may have seen the video where the iGizmo team at Dennis Publishing describes using Adobe Digital Publishing Suite to build engaging content and drive premium advertising. iGizmo is a successful publication that is funded entirely by advertising. Now, iGizmo has joined the ranks of paid subscription publications and is seeing great results.
“Prior to having the ability to go onto Newsstand we were both frustrated and concerned that iGizmo would lose momentum, as sitting outside of Newsstand for a magazine was the same as being lost in the wilderness. Since we have moved into Newsstand, downloads have increased significantly and advertisers are noting an increase in engagement.”
– Martin Belson, Commercial and Retail Director at Dennis Publishing
February 7, 2012
We blogged about the latest Digital Publishing Suite features a couple of weeks ago and Bob Bringhurst goes into step-by-step detail describing what’s new on the Digital Publishing Suite Help site. Now, Adobe Evangelist Colin Fleming, with his usual charm and eloquence, brings to life nested overlays, buttons, PDF pinch & zoom, relinking articles, and more in his latest video.
In this video, you’ll learn about (in order of appearance):
- Nested Overlays
- Overlays in a slideshow
- Overlays in a scrolling frame
- A few limitations
- New Button Features
- Buttons in slideshow states
- Buttons for a slideshow in a scrolling frame
- Buttons with multiple actions
- PDF Zoom with interactivity on iOS
- Relink article to source files
Viewer and Viewer Builder Updates
- Newsstand on iOS supports free subscriptions
- PDF Pinch/Zoom
- Interactivity while zooming
- iOS only, viewer dependent, article based
- Self signed Adobe Content Viewer for iPad
- Pro & Enterprise features for iOS
- Get to new tools faster than Apple approval
- Requires third party tool for USB preview, MacOS only
Folio Production Improvements
- Status notifications in dashboard
- Push improvements
- Manual push notifications
- 3rd party push
Want to learn more?
- Visit the Adobe Digital Publishing Help Site for tutorials
- Go to the Adobe Digital Publishing TV Channel for more how-to videos