As we mentioned in the last DPS Update, Adobe is devoting energy in their next releases to stability, performance, and enhancing existing features. DPS Release 21 provides improvements in several key areas.

Viewer and Authoring

Folio Builder: Save as Version

One of the more common issues experienced by designers creating folios is keeping their Folio Producer Tools within InDesign in sync with the version of the viewer builder that creates their app. For those that have created mismatched versions, it has required reloading older versions of the software, which can be confusing and time consuming. In Version 21, the Folio Builder dialog now clearly indicates what version of Folio is being created and provides the ability to set the folio created to a different version with an override dialog. In future versions of the tools, a default version will be able to be set from the Viewer Builder to reduce the occurrence of mismatched versions.

Active Document USB Preview

The USB Preview extends the ability to sideload a folio from the Folio Builder to a connected iPad. Active Document USB Preview allows any active DPS layout to be previewed on a USB connected iPad without saving or having to upload to Folio Producer. This will allow designers to dynamically preview their work while designing to test how certain interactive features display. We see this as a big time-saver for the design process.

Viewer: Auto Download

This new enhancement to the viewer provides the ability for a user to initiate a download in the library and then continue the download while in the viewer. As soon as enough content had downloaded to display a portion of the folio, such as the cover, it will begin to display the content and continue downloading in the background. Adobe points out that downloading in the viewer as opposed to the library may be slower, but since it occurs in the background, content will appear faster.The user can begin to interact with the displayed content, rather than waiting for a full download in the library. This may also be an important factor in reducing the number of interrupted downloads which occur when a user does not want to wait for the full download.

Viewer: Custom Library

Version 21 will introduce the ability to create custom libraries in a beta release. This introduces an extended javascript implementation with functions to replace the standard viewer library with a custom one. Adobe will work with a few key sites to test this capability before a full rollout to ensure stability and robustness. If you are interested in this, you can contact TFP or Adobe for additional information.

Web Viewer – Content Protection

Version 20 introduced the long-awaited Web Viewer. In that release, the protection of all articles available for sharing via the web viewer was set to off by default. This required that any folios that a publisher wanted to share be unprotected individually at publish time. By default, no content was made available to the Web Viewer. Based upon feedback from publishers, Adobe has decided to set the default to unprotected, since in most cases publishers will want to share their content by default. This will require that any content that should not be shared to be intentionally marked as protected.

There are two levels to the web viewer activation – the first is to enable the web viewer (or not) for a given app’s content. The second, once activated, is the sharing of content to the Web Viewer must be indicated as protected or unprotected.

Web Viewer – Downloads Count Now

One thing that wasn’t entirely clear to publishers with the onset of the Web Viewer was whether downloads were calculated from web downloads. Downloads via the Web Viewer WILL now count towards downloads.
Effective in version 21, Adobe will begin charging for these downloads. When the number of individual article downloads across a single or multiple users equates to the number of total articles in a folio, a single download will be charged.

Web Viewer – Additional Functionality

In Version 21, the Web Viewer will support nested interactive overlays, HTML articles, and the ability to take advantage of the “Hide in TOC” function.

Account Administration – Notifications

The Account Administration Dashboard will introduce several new beneficial features. Email and Dashboard notifications will notify account administrators when their hosting plan is due to renew and also when downloads are close to depletion. Notifications will be generated at 20% left, then 10%, 0, and past 30 days. After this point the account will be disabled until renewals occur. Adobe has allowed a grace period for this up to this point, but with the implementation of these notifications will now disable accounts that continue as unpaid.


Folio Producer APIs now available

Adobe has officially released the Folio Producer APIs, which allow solution providers to integrate with the Folio Producer service. This is a key enhancement for systems such as cross-media publishing platforms to work more closely with DPS.

Direct Entitlement API

The APIs for integration with Direct Entitlement solutions has been expanded to support a wider variety of providers and approaches.

Folio Producer Cover Dates

The ability to define Cover Dates in the Folio Producer dashboard as a key metadata field will be implemented in this version. The Cover Dates can be used to show or hide content.

Enterprise Viewer Builder – Custom Sub Strings

The Viewer Builder for Enterprise customers will now allow for the creation of custom subscription strings within the Viewer.

Next Release, V22 Highlights:

China Distribution

This release will turn on support for distribution in China for a few key customers for testing. Adobe wants to ensure that all components work as expected before making this generally available. Sites interested in participating in testing of China distribution can contact TFP. Note that distribution in China requires a customer to obtain a GAAP license from the Chinese government. Version 23 is intended to enable full support for China distribution assuming proof of license by the customer.

Web Viewer –  Download Caps

Early reaction to the Web Viewer was very positive but brought some initial concerns about content going viral and having a large impact on the number of downloads – a good but potentially costly problem to have. Adobe will introduce the ability to cap Web Viewer downloads to address this concern and essentially post a sold out state when those total downloads are met. A per publication limit will be able to be set by the publisher, controlling when issues will no longer be available in the Web Viewer.

Rendition Mapping

Rendition Mapping is an enhancement that will sense device resolution when a shared link is viewed and send the appropriate resolution file to the device. For example, if a high-res retina rendition is shared to a user with an iPad 1, they will not be able to view that folio, getting a message informing them that viewing it is not available to them. This enhancement will retrieve the appropriate resolution rendition and deliver it to the user’s specific device.

Auto-Render PNG for Web Viewer

This enhancement will auto-render a PNG file for Web Viewer use when PDF is the default format used for delivery to tablet devices.

Library Sections

The concept of sections within a folio will be tested in beta in v22. This will provide the  ability to take a folio, break it into sub-sections, and allow people to download and view those sections separately– much like one would when they pull their favorite sections from a newspaper first. Eventually this option will remember a user’s preference for section and apply that as a default auto-download.

Folio Filters

Another option we may see in v22 is the ability to filter folios. Filters may be by language, category, or other similar options. New metadata that will be defined within the folio will hide and show data that will be exposed to the filter.


Pages with interactives can often interfere with left and right swiping. Hot Zones will introduce the ability to set a region along the left and right edges that are “hot” for swiping.

Two-Finger Article Swipe

For those publications that flatten stacks, where article pages are left to right rather than a vertical stack, two-finger swipe will be advantageous in helping a user to jump to the start of the next article.

There are several more on the list – stay tuned for the next update in about 6 weeks to catch the latest highlights in how to best plan for and create your new DPS apps!

Posted by: Margot Knorr Mancini

A thought leader in the publishing industry, Margot Knorr Mancini has helped numerous publishers redefine their missions to become nimble content generators with the ability to repurpose content easily and efficiently. As Founder & CEO of Technology for Publishing, her analytical mind allows her to remain a step ahead of the industry, recognizing early trends and developing pivotal best practices.