Still pretty flashy, but without the Flash: Adobe’s Digital Publishing Platform

Xavier Verhoeven
2 June, 2010
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Not one to let Apple stand in its way, Adobe has announced plans for a new digital viewer technology that will allow publishers to bring digital magazines to life. The software was developed in collaborating with Condé Nast’s WIRED magazine to bring a digital edition to the iPad.

The two companies had originally built the digital version using Flash, but after Apple’s decision to disallow cross-compiled apps and Steve Jobs’ Thoughts on Flash essay, Adobe was stuck trying to find a solution.

What they have come up with is a ‘Digital Publishing Platform’ that utilises Apple-allowed codes Objective-C and HTML5 to create interactive digital magazines for iPhone OS devices. It will also use Adobe’s own AIR platform for other platforms. The technology works seamlessly with Adobe InDesign CS5 (InDesign is the leading software in print layout) so should allow designers to build both print and digital versions simultaneously.

“Adobe’s work with WIRED has resulted in a digital magazine format that creates an immersive experience, allowing a publication’s unique content, look and feel and advertising to stand out in the digital realm,” said David Burkett, vice president and general manager of creative solutions at Adobe. “We aim to make our digital viewer software available to all publishers soon and plan to deliver versions that work across multiple hardware platforms. It’s safe to say that if you are already working in InDesign CS5, you’ll be well on your way to producing a beautiful digital version of your publication.”

Adobe expects to make the Digital Publishing Platform available later this year, and is currently investigating content protection, social sharing and content measurement as part of the platform. More information about the platform is available from Adobe’s website.

The WIRED Reader can be downloaded from the iTunes App Store and costs $5.99.

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