Quark announced the immediate availability of QuarkXPress 7 on Tuesday. The new version of the professional page layout application is designed to go head-to-head with Adobe InDesign, and adds several new features like job jackets that track a projectis specifications and status, composition zones that let multiple designers work on the same document simultaneously, and true support for OpenType and Unicode fonts. It also gains enhanced transparency tools that many say exceed the comparable tools found in InDesign.
Quarkis senior vice president, J?rgen Kurz, commented "This latest version introduces forward-thinking concepts and capabilities in response to evolving market needs and customer feedback."
Despite statements to the contrary, QuarkXPress 7 is not shipping as a Universal Binary application. Instead, it is a PowerPC-native application, and a future update will add native support for Intel-based Macs. The QuarkXPress 7 beta has now been renamed QuarkXPress 7 Universal Binary public beta 1, and will run for 60 days before disabling itself.
This news is sure to disappoint many designers who have been eagerly awaiting the Universal Binary version of QuarkXPress 7. For many, that was a compelling feature that set it apart from Adobe InDesign.
Quark does not have an official release date available for the Universal Binary update.
QuarkXPress 7 is priced at US$749.[This article has been updated with additional information about QuarkXPress 7]