So, you’ve decided to utilize Adobe’s Digital Publishing Suite (DPS) for your organization. You’re excited to make your content come to life and give your readers an awesome interactive experience. Maybe you’ve read (and bookmarked, and reread) the Adobe DPS Getting Started Guide, but you still have a few questions. Or, maybe you’ve heard of Adobe DPS, but the overall process and how you could add this tool to your workflow is a little unclear.

Welcome to post #1 in our new series – The Ultimate Guide to Adobe DPS: Tips and FAQs. I’ve helped our clients navigate through their first Adobe DPS app and have rounded up the most frequently asked questions organizations ask me as they get started on their DPS journey.

1. What’s the difference between an article, a folio and an app?

The three key terms regarding external content in Adobe DPS are an ‘article,’ a ‘folio’ and an ‘app.’ Understanding the differences between these terms will help you get started with Adobe DPS. The terms work from smallest to largest:

  • An article is the building block of a folio. They may be actual articles in a digital magazine, sections in a report, subdivisions of an overall industry, or whatever arbitrary divisions work best for your company and your folio. When a user swipes from right to left on their device, they are most likely going from article to article.
  • A folio is a collection of one or more articles and appears as an issue in the library within your app.
  • An app is essentially the shell for which all of your digital content is held. Users gain access to all of your folios by downloading your app from the Apple Store or Google Play.

2. How does an InDesign publication print file transfer into a folio?

Adobe DPS is rooted in Adobe InDesign, making the transformation from print to digital media a bit easier on designers who, in the past, would have to utilize code to create an app.

Design-wise, it is best to plan for screens and gather additional content (videos, photos, hyperlinks) in the beginning stages of your print production. Once your files are sent to press, you can begin to reformat them for the digital space. Since you are not limited by a page count, you can utilize new design elements or additional content to engage your reader in each article. The font size will need to be larger in the digital space (our design team recommends a 16-18pt font for ease of reading.)

As always, content is key! Users want a digital experience – tell your story by utilizing overlays and interactivity and really bring your content to life.

3. How can we use DPS if we don’t have a publication?

While Adobe DPS is fantastic for creating media publications, the functionality of the DPS platform can expand far beyond publication design. We worked with ExxonMobil in creating Working at ExxonMobil, an interactive app from their HR department that provides information about career opportunities. We utilized overlays to create a “career matrix,” which would help a user see what career paths they can take at ExxonMobil based on their degree. With the right content and design, Adobe DPS can bring interactivity and customer engagement to a wide variety of content types beyond publications – like sales enablement tools and event apps just to name a few.

4. What are the functionality differences between iOS and Android devices?

Adobe’s DPS Supported Feature List is a great tool for understanding the functionality differences between these two platforms. With the vast list of DPS-enabled Android devices, it is important to note that devices may handle content within folios a bit differently. There are also some functionality options that are not currently available on Android, such as push notifications, subscriptions and panoramas.

5. How should my folio be oriented?

One of the first decisions you need to make for your folio, and when converting a print publication to a digital publication, is the orientation of the pages in the folio. You can choose for your folios to be oriented horizontally (landscape), vertically (portrait) or both. There is no “correct” way – the decision should be made based on what works best for your content; however, keep in mind that creating a dual-oriented folio would be a much larger workload than sticking to one orientation.

As with all technology, the world of digital publishing is constantly evolving. Adobe frequently updates the DPS tools to enhance the user experience and to give designers and publishers more options.

Stay tuned for Part 2 in The Ultimate Guide to Adobe DPS: Tips and FAQs series, where I’ll answer five more of the most popular Adobe DPS questions I’ve received.

If you have questions on Adobe DPS, leave us a comment below. We may answer it in an upcoming post in this series.