Content on mobile — not animated print on mobile

I have been a MAX attendee at two occa­sions — in 2012 and in 2015. And boy, are things look­ing dif­fer­ent after just three short years. What I am talk­ing about is the Adobe DPS-plat­form, which this sum­mer not only changed the name from Dig­i­tal Pub­lish­ing Suite to Dig­i­tal Pub­lish­ing Solu­tion but also changed focus from an app based tool for pub­lish­ing dig­i­tal mag­a­zines and brochures to a busi­ness crit­i­cal cross-plat­form com­mu­ni­ca­tions and mar­ket­ing tool around which, all cre­ativ­i­ty spins.

About two years ago I inter­viewed Nick Bogaty — head of DPS at Adobe — at an event in the Swedish cap­i­tal Stock­holm, and here he dis­closed just a lit­tle bit of the forth­com­ing strat­e­gy. That day in Stock­holm how­ev­er it became very clear to me, that in the future — which is now — the cor­po­rate mar­ket in the shape of mid to large enter­pris­es would be extreme­ly impor­tant to Adobe. But did I at that time fore­see where we would be today seen from a mobile and cre­ative per­spec­tive? Absolute­ly not!

A glimpse of the future

Dig­i­tal Pub­lish­ing Solu­tion is only a few months old, and actu­al­ly the con­cept is a merg­er of the for­mer Pro and Enter­prise offer­ings mean­ing there is now only one fla­vor on the DPS-plat­form. I can men­tion many improve­ments on the plat­form — a brand new inter­face and tools for con­tin­u­ous pub­lish­ing are just a few — but it was at this years MAX, we real­ly got a glimpse of the full poten­tial and the future to come. Inte­gra­tion with con­tent from the cre­ative wiz­ard tool touch-app Adobe Slate is just one exam­ple of this.

Now we are way ahead of tra­di­tion­al pub­lish­ing, which in fact did not gain much momen­tum from enter­ing the dig­i­tal plat­form. I know, inter­ac­tive pub­li­ca­tions became pret­ty wide spread, but in many ways it was peri­od­i­cal pub­lish­ing as usu­al and busi­ness as usu­al. With the launch of Dig­i­tal Pub­lish­ing Solu­tion and the pos­si­bil­i­ties not only to pub­lish on an ongo­ing basis but also inte­grate pub­lish­ing from a huge vari­ety of plat­forms, that has very much changed. Not to men­tion the pos­si­bil­i­ty to let your cre­ativ­i­ty blos­som on the fly and on the move.

Quite anoth­er ballgame

At DPS Sneaks the very last day at MAX we were shown some of the emi­nent fea­tures like inte­gra­tion with Adobe Expe­ri­ence Man­ag­er, inte­gra­tion with Adobe Doc­u­ment Cloud as well as in-app search, which will be launched ear­ly next year. Pub­lish­ing direct­ly from CMS-sys­tems like Dru­pal, Word­Press, and Joom­la along with pub­lish­ing direct­ly from part­ner sys­tems like Wood Wing are of course oth­er benefits.

With the launch of Dig­i­tal Pub­lish­ing Solu­tion Adobe dra­mat­i­cal­ly has lift­ed the DPS-con­cept as a whole. This means how­ev­er, that the low­er seg­ment like small pub­lish­ing hous­es and inde­pen­dent pub­lish­ers are long gone. Accord­ing to Nick Bogaty there are plen­ty of oth­er solu­tions to ful­fill that seg­ment. Because as he says:

Con­tent on mobile in focus

“For indi­vid­u­als and small pub­lish­ers, we feel that there are a num­ber of great options for mobile pub­lish­ing. There is EPUB, there are new offer­ings like Apple News, there is pub­lish online via InDe­sign, and there are small com­pa­nies, that offer, what we offered in the old DPS prod­uct — a way to get fixed page lay­outs from InDe­sign into an app”.

When Adobe launched Dig­i­tal Pub­lish­ing Suite about five years ago, apps held the promise to rev­o­lu­tion­ize pub­lish­ing. That promise has evolved in the pub­lish­ing indus­try quite dra­mat­i­cal­ly as, pub­lish­ers push for atten­tion in the apps space vis a vis oth­er dig­i­tal chan­nels like the mobile web. This is strong­ly sup­port­ed by Adobe’s Senior Prod­uct Man­ag­er Scott Dreier, who says: “Users want con­tent on mobile — not ani­mat­ed print on mobile”.

Con­tent cen­tric publishing

Over the past five years Adobe’s busi­ness has changed dra­mat­i­cal­ly. While ini­tial­ly get­ting an app out into the mar­ket­place and get­ting con­tent deliv­ered to that app via InDe­sign was enough for the cus­tomers and the mar­ket, it is now not enough any more. So, over the past year Adobe has com­plete­ly rebuilt the DPS-con­cept to cater mid to large cor­po­rate cus­tomers as well as large media com­pa­nies. Com­pa­nies who have the mar­ket­ing mus­cle to draw a large and loy­al fol­low­ing even via apps.

But — and that is prob­a­bly the most impor­tant improve­ment — it is no longer the app, that is hub. Con­tent — and with this cre­ativ­i­ty — is the hub. Seen from my per­spec­tive this is pret­ty impor­tant. I am not a big enter­prise. I am a small, inde­pen­dent pub­lish­er liv­ing in Den­mark where the native lan­guage — Dan­ish — is only spo­ken by some five mil­lion people.

What’s in it for me?

Even if we off course use tablets and smart­phones like mad­men, it in some cas­es has ben quite dif­fi­cult to per­suade peo­ple to go from a print­ed mag­a­zine to a dig­i­tal mag­a­zine. At least when it comes to trade mag­a­zines — even if we like to think, that Den­mark as a part of the Nordic region is on its toes, when it comes to set an exam­ple as tech­no­log­i­cal frontrunner.

I think, that the some­what mod­est suc­cess in dig­i­tal pub­lish­ing in some areas comes down to the essence of what I men­tioned before: “Users want con­tent on mobile — not ani­mat­ed print on mobile”. So right now I am build­ing an update to my app, and I am pret­ty much excit­ed, if suc­cess will take off. I think, it will. But let me get back to you on that at a lat­er time. So far I am look­ing for­ward to using all the new and excit­ing fea­tures in Dig­i­tal Pub­lish­ing Solu­tion — and with my new iPhone 6S Plus and lat­er the new iPad Pro I am espe­cial­ly look­ing for­ward to be able also real­ly to go mobile in the cre­ative process.