October 25, 2013 Last Updated 9:01 am

Bug in the new version of iBooks Author has publishers scrambling

The ability to embed custom fonts appears to have been stripped out of iBooks Author 2.1, an error that Apple is now aware of (and hopefully an update will be issued soon)

The Apple support boards are busy today as eBook publishers who use iBooks Author discovered that their iBooks projects have taken a hit since the launch of iBooks Author 2.1. The problem is that custom fonts are no longer be embedding into the .iba file and so will be replaced when the creator previews the eBook on an iPad. The problem also occurs when exporting and publishing the eBook.

(Thank you to TNM reader Raphaël Freeman from Renana for first spotting this on Thursday. We have been trading emails, and then a FaceTime chat ever since.)

iBA-Font-Issue-lgThe problem doesn’t immediately show up on the Mac because it would be assumed that the designer has that font already installed on their Mac (otherwise, they wouldn’t use the font, right?)

Some users speculated that the problem might be with the new Mac OS, OS X Mavericks, which brought the iBooks app to the Mac. But tests seem to confirm that the problem lies with the newest version of iBooks Author as files created with the older version reproduce without errors.

If you’ve already updated your iBA app you’ll want to scramble to see if you can located an image file for iBA 2.0 (and pass it along to me, I have several TNM readers hoping to locate one). If you haven’t updated iBA, don’t do it, wait until Apple releases a fix.

I’ve reached out to Apple for a comment and a confirmation of the problem and will update this story if I hear anything.

Update: I spoke at length with a member of Apple’s iBooks Author team – that was great, by the way – and Apple is currently aware of the issue and my guess is that we will see some sort of resolution such as a new update for iBA (or whatever it takes).