QuarkXPress quarterly update release 15.1 is available

New features exclusively for QX Advantage members


On 31 October 2019, Quark Software announced the availability of its QuarkXPress release 15.1 release. The update is the first quarterly feature release to QuarkXPress through the Advantage Program. While QuarkXPress can be purchased outright and buyers can buy the new version when they feel they need for newly added features, the company has to keep continuously upgrading the software. New features maintain the application’s edge as an all-purpose professional tool for page layout, web design, mobile app creation, and photo editing.

QuarkXPress Advantage is a new program from Quark that offers membership for ongoing updates and feature additions to QuarkXPress, unlimited tech support, and, apparently, some exclusive offers. The Advantage membership is claimed to be different from ‘the handcuffs of subscription software’ or the SAS model. Included in the 15.1 release are several new features and enhancements exclusively for QuarkXPress Advantage members.

New features in Item Styles

QuarkXPress 15.1 introduces new features in Item Styles, which allow a user to define an item style with functionalities like Auto Grow Text Boxes, Multiple Border Selection, and Custom Dashes and Stripes. The width and height of a text box can be set to ‘Auto’ to enhance templating for text boxes. Multiple and specific border configurations for any box with width, line, style, or color can be added. Custom-created dashes and stripes can also be added while creating an Item Style. You can also Find and Replace custom-created Dash and Stripe in Item Find and Change.

Convert InDesign files to QuarkXPress Project

InDesign files can be seamlessly converted to QuarkXPress projects. Multiple options are available to either automatically search InDesign files by running a Smart Scan for bulk conversion or by browsing individual files. The destination folder can also be specified, and there is a switch or toggle for selecting and deselecting individual files for conversion.

Multiple borders in item style.
Multiple borders in item style.

Last line indent for Table of Content

An indent spacing specifically for page numbers in the Table of Contents can be defined. A Right Indent value in the paragraph style sheet while building the TOC can be specified. With this feature, only page numbers will be allowed in the Last Line Indent spacing.

Object Browser Palette for Flex

Selecting boxes in nested containers has been made easier. A new palette allows you to choose and move around objects with ease.

Rich Copy & Paste from MS Word

Text content can be copy-pasted with the same formatting as-is from an external application. The following attributes will be retained: Text formatting (font, font style, text style, color, indents, and spacings), and Tables and Footnotes without any loss of content elements or their styling. Rich copy and paste is a feature that we would also like to see implemented for Open Office files. We mentioned this to the Quark developers that we met earlier this year. When text content files’ italics and bold typestyles are retained on the page, an extra round of proofreading and corrections is obviated.

Auto naming of colors

The new features include the choice to auto name new colors. The automatic color name displays the color space components along with their actual values. Further, the color names are dynamically updated on changing the color component values in the color dialog.

Enhancements for Windows and support for Mac OS 10.15

For MS Windows users, the text rendering on the document canvas is faster with quicker font loading in the dialogs and palettes. Invoking and switching fonts in the Glyph palette, the Preferences dialog, the Character style sheet have been improved. There are performance improvements in invoking the Measurement palette and for switching tabs in it. The 15.1 release also supports the new Apple Mac OS 10.15 (Catalina OS) and is notarized by Apple after passing all the security checks on the new OS.

Flex improvements

With the 15.1 updates, Quark users can apply hyperlinks in any kind of boxes, including groups and flex containers. Any item from one container can be copied and pasted directly into a second container by using the paste options. Child items can be rearranged in the flex container by using shortcut keys (Ctrl or Command Up/Ctrl or Command Down) or by using the Move Up, Move Down menu available in the Item Menu.

Endnote as hyperlinks

Endnote markers can be hyperlinked to Endnote text in the exported PDF files from QuarkXPress. Users can click on the hyperlink to view the endnote instead of navigating manually through the document.

Progress indicator for spring loading

The progress bar indicator for uploading of images now lets the user know the status and progress on spring loading.

The Advantage Program

QuarkXPress Advantage members can update their version with Release 15.1 through the auto-updater when they launch QuarkXPress or by downloading the update manually. The Advantage Program gives customers a lifetime license to QuarkXPress, including updates with new features every quarter and premium technical phone support. Advantage membership is available online or from Quark’s authorized resellers, such as Clavis Technologies in Noida in the Delhi/NCR.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital 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.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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