Affinity Publisher beta version launched for free public trial

Innovations by Affinity in desktop publishing

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Affinity Publisher

The Affinity range of professional creative software has come closer to adding a desktop publishing app to its family by releasing a beta version of Affinity Publisher, on 30 August 2018. Free to download for all, one can test the pre-release version of the app from https://affinity.serif.com/publisher.

Developed by the multi-award-winning team at developer Serif’s UK headquarters, Affinity Publisher is the result of thousands of hours worth of efforts. Serif is emphasizing that the app is still in development; beta users will play an influential role in shaping the first retail release, around the end of the year.

Affinity Publisher boasts full integration with Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo, allowing owners of all three to edit vector designs and images right there in one app. Early users will see buttons to switch to Photo and Designer within the app; however, these will not be available until later in the beta period.

Constructive criticism is welcome for the final app

Serif managing director Ashley Hewson says, “From the earliest days of visualizing the Affinity range, we planned an unrivaled trio of sleek, super-modern apps created to work with the latest technology; ultra-fast, with stunning power and completely stripped of bloat.

“The final step towards realizing that initial ambition will come with the launch of Affinity Publisher. It’s an all-new app which we believe will revolutionize desktop publishing in the same way Affinity Photo and Affinity Designer have shaken up professional photo editing and vector graphic design.”

Moreover, key desktop publishing capabilities built into Affinity Publisher include advanced typography, linked text frames, master pages, facing page spreads, dynamic photo frames, tables, baseline grids, linked resources, end-to-end CMYK. Hewson adds, “It’s a beta, so there will be bugs and areas of the app which are not yet fully polished. We don’t recommend you use it for any important production work at this time. We are relying on beta users to let us know what works and what doesn’t … You can expect plenty of free updates to come, just like with our other apps.”

Serif has set up a dedicated forum where beta users are encouraged to share their feedback, suggestions and requests, at https://affin.co/publisherbetaforum.

The beta version of Affinity Publisher is for Mac and Windows users only. An iPad version will follow later, as with Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo, Apple’s reigning iPad App of the Year.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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