November 24, 2014 Last Updated 12:15 pm

Adobe will drop Digital Publishing Suite, Single Edition for Creative Cloud members

Adobe will push its fixed layout ePub InDesign solution, assisting Apple push eBooks into its iBooks Store instead of the App Store

Those publishers who have enjoyed using Adobe’s Single Edition app solution, and are not Pro or Enterprise users, will soon lose a major feature as the company announced that it would drop the benefit for Creative Cloud members on May 1, 2015. Single Edition allows publishers to create a single issue magazine, eBook or other type of app, free of charge and launch it into the Apple App Store – all that has been required is that the publisher have a Creative Cloud membership.

TabPub-mbp-tab-coverThe move is part of Adobe’s fixed ePub solution push as it encourages designers and publishers to use InDesign as the production solution when building eBooks. Unfortunately, like Single Edition itself, its fixed ePub InDesign solution is limited to building eBooks for a limited number of ecosystems as Amazon continues to be the outlier in regard to industry standards regarding ePub3.

The Single Edition solution was made free for Creative Cloud members two years ago and became a good solution for creating interactive eBooks. Non-members could continue to buy a Single Edition license through Adobe.com.

“The Digital Publishing Suite, Single Edition, service will be available for use until May 1, 2015,” the email from Adobe states. “Customers can redeem previously purchased serial numbers and create or edit apps in the meantime, but beyond that date the service will no longer be available. Please also note that on December 4, 2014, Single Edition will be removed as a purchasable product from the Adobe.com store. Instead, we have introduced an e-publishing solution for designers: the new fixed-layout EPUB function in the 2014 release of Adobe InDesign CC. This feature exports your fixed-layout InDesign file into EPUB3 standard format, increasing your opportunities to publish content across a wider range of tablets.”

Adobe’s Single Edition solution was also used for single issue digital magazine apps. TNM’s own Tablet Publishing app, published just over a year ago, used the Single Edition solution. The solution does not allow for a library page to be added, so only a single issue can be created.

The elimination of the Single Edition option is a big blow to small, independent publishers who are not willing or able to sign onto Adobe’s more expensive Digital Publishing Suite options.

But the move may, coincidentally, be a nice break for other digital publishing platforms such as Aquafadas or Mag+. By cutting off a small but growing portion of the publishing community from building single issue digital magazines or interactive eBook apps, a need will have to be filled by someone. (One can understand the desire to upsell developers and publishers to the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite, but one wonders how many may see their Creative Cloud membership as far less valuable today than they have in the past.)

More importantly, I think it is important to state that interactive eBooks are not always seen as a book at all and more like apps. Many eBooks that contain video, animations, and other interactive elements are their own thing. I am saddened by the thought that some of the better book apps that have been created over the past four years now may only continue to be produced by those publishers willing to invest

  • Michael W. Perry 3 years ago

    I’m delighted by this move. Single Edition was a ‘feature too far’ for Creative Cloud. It distracted publishers from a path that made more sense—fixed-layout epub. Dropping it should also allow Adobe’s InDesign team to concentrate more on what really matters: more features for platform-independent fixed-layout epub.

    The ease of creating fixed-layout epubs for iPads, Nooks, and Kobo devices from InDesign print versions gives those platforms a major advantage over Amazon for ebooks where control of the layout matters, typically textbooks, cookbooks, and travel guides. By sticking to its proprietary format and offering no easy and inexpensive way to create the equivalent for Kindles, Amazon has given up valuable ground to its competitors. That’s a major mistake.

  • Joseph T. Sinclair 3 years ago

    This shows the risk of creative persons commiting to one software company. My commitment was not only to using the Creative Cloud myself but also touting it through my blog. The worry was that Adobe might eventually raise the price of CC. But it’s now clear that Adobe has a complete disregard for small-time digital publishing and authors and can no longer be trusted. It’s a shame, because Adobe has been one of the best software companies in the world all these years and was thought to be a booster of digital publishing. But I will advise everyone to find a new authoring system for book apps, which I believe are the future of digital piblishing. And who will needs CC to make EPUBs? It won’t be long before you can make EPUB 3 ebooks with a wide variety of authoring software.

    This show of Adobe’s disregard for independent authors and small publishers highlights that those who trust Amazon may also be making a mistake. Sooner or later Amazon may put the financial squeeze on authors like it has on major publishers. That will leave author’s in a two way financial squeeze: low profits and expensive authoring software.

    But digital technology has a way of leveling the playing field. With Adobe and Amazon off the table for indies, the void will be filled sooner or later. It’s the content that’s important, after all, and not the typewriter.

  • Dejay Depusoir 3 years ago

    This is an interesting move that is troubling. For past couple months, I’ve seen Adobe interview established corporations who credit the creative cloud for the integrated, ease of use, flexibility, and multi-tasking services. Although this cause be to share interest with my colleagues to become create cloud members, the drop of the dps draws the line.
    Adobe created the creative cloud to make all apps affordable and available. Yet with DPS dropped, how can I credit myself as a DPS developer? How can I show my work experience using DPS and it’s features? To me, I think that you, Adobe, will lose present and future creative cloud members because the inspiration to learn DPS will be behind a pay wall in addition to an existing monthly pay rate.