Our news includes some details about the launch of QuarkXPress 7.0, but I have to ask if this is at all significant to the desktop publishing world at this point. Most–maybe even all–publishers I work with have made the move to Adobe InDesign. Some publishers are holding on to a few licenses of QuarkXPress for older books and products that might need to be updated, but all new products are being done using InDesign. Moreover, Adobe Creative Suite, which combines InDesign, Illustrator, PhotoShop, and other products, is simply too attractive an offering with very attractive pricing. Quark has nothing comparable to counter with.
For larger publishers, there are also very viable workgroup options with InDesign, which wasn’t true a few years ago. The combination of InDesign with InCopy for writers and editors is gaining traction, and there solutions such as K4 from Managing Editor and Smart Connection Enterprise from Woodwing for larger groups. These systems are often replacing Quark’s QPS solution as the publishers drop QuarkXPress for InDesign.
Quark 6.0 took forever to come out. Quark 7.0 took forever to come out. In the meantime, InDesign has really taken hold. So I have my doubts that Quark can overcome this.
Finally, there is a cautionary tale in all of this. Quark was famously arrogant in its heyday, and did a lot to alienate customers. When I wrote about the movement to InDesign for The Seybold Report in December 2004 (subscription required), industry maven Kate Binder said, “Never discount people’s absolute, bitter hatred of Quark the company. It’s genuinely a factor.”

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