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Adobe vs. Quark – desktop wars heat up

Thursday, 21 September 2006
By Print21

Adobe Creative Suite 2.3 will include Acrobat 8 Professional, its flagship PDF creation program, as well as Dreamweaver 8 following the design giant’s acquisition of competitor Macromedia last year.

Acrobat 8 Professional adds a number of new printing-oriented features including support for outputting PDF/X-4 for native transparency and PDF/A for long-term archiving. Additional opportunities for collaboration are now possible, with workgroups able to set up shared reviews so that participants can see and respond to each other’s comments as they check over the file.

Adobe has also indicated that Dreamweaver will elbow GoLive, its own attempt at cornering the online content creation market, out of the Creative Suite portfolio of products. Future versions of Creative Suite will integrate Dreamweaver as the replacement for GoLive, though Adobe claims it will continue to develop GoLive as a standalone product.

“Acrobat 8 Professional enables printers to achieve better quality while automating workflows and controlling costs, and together with the recently released Adobe PDF Print Engine delivers the first end-to-end native PDF workflow,” says Mark Hilton, vice president of Adobe product management.

“In addition, we decided it was the right time to deliver Dreamweaver with Creative Suite 2.3, so customers can make the transition to the industry’s leading Web design and development tool,” says Hilton.

Adobe will ship Creative Suite 2.3 in the region during the fourth quarter of 2006 with an estimated street price of $2199 in Australia and $2649 in New Zealand for the full version.

Meanwhile, Adobe will be holding seminars across Australia and New Zealand to mark the launch of the new software package during late October and early November, click here for details.

The competitor strikes back – “QuarkXPress twice as fast as InDesign”

While Adobe flexes its marketing muscle, Quark is hailing a recent study as proof it still has the edge in the desktop publishing game. Published by Ron Roszkiewicz, publishing industry consultant and contributor to The Seybold Report, it claims that QuarkXPress 7 has a higher return on investment when compared to Adobe InDesign CS2 and previous versions of QuarkXPress.

Roszkiewicz based the report on best practices suggested by users within both design-intensive and production-intensive workflow environments, and Quark claim its offers evidence that QuarkXPress 7 is twice as fast as InDesign CS2 in advertising creation and design workflow.

The report claims the new collaboration features of QuarkXPress 7, such as collaboration zones and Quark Job Jackets, makes it the fastest application for client interaction. Roszkiewicz claims this is particularly true for the review and approval process, including time spent applying client changes.

The new collaboration features also gave Quark the edge in magazine workflow testing. QuarkXPress 7 completed the workflow the quickest and also produced the most reliable PDF output through its Quark Job Jackets.

“Much of QuarkXPress 7’s ROI edge comes from its implementation of innovative features for collaboration and document evaluation,” says Roszkiewicz. “In addition, the enhancements to QuarkXPress 7’s existing imaging technology and project-oriented document model really took this version of Quark’s flagship software to a higher level of performance.”

To see for yourself, click here to obtain a copy of the ROI report or visit the Quark Web site at www.quark.com/sales/desktop.

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