Quark has announced the availability of QuarkXPress 9.1, a free update to QuarkXPress 9 that features App Studio.

App Studio allows designers to create branded apps for the iPad, distribute apps through the Apple App Store, and design and publish content that can be purchased and downloaded from within the apps. This integrated set of tools puts designers in control and offers a pricing model that brings iPad app creation and publishing within everyone’s reach, says Gavin Drake, vice president of marketing for Quark.

To create branded apps, designers use App Studio Factory, the standalone Mac OS X software included with QuarkXPress 9.1. App Studio Factory enables designers to create customized App Studio apps using predefined app templates that offer a variety of features, including in-app purchases and in-app subscriptions.

To publish to the iPad with App Studio, designers and publishers will purchase an app template license and an issue license pack from Quark, which are one-off costs required for each app created and each issue published to the app. Other than these two costs there are no ongoing fees required by Quark.

As an example of Quark’s pricing structure, a designer creating an app for a one-time single issue will purchase from Quark the app template license, which costs US$149, and a one-issue license pack, which costs $349. In this instance, the fees from Quark equal $498. The designer will also need an Apple iOS Developer Program membership, which costs $99. For a full breakdown of the cost per each app template and the license bundles, go to http://www.quark.com/Products/AppStudio/Pricing.aspx .    

Quark is Providing discounts of up to 90% to App Studio users in education, including faculty, students, and institutions. With this discount, a design student can create an app for as little as $50 for both the app template license and issue license pack, and an educational institution can publish a monthly iPad magazine for $447 for the first year.

Current QuarkXPress 9 users can get started by downloading QuarkXPress 9.1 for free from http://www.quark.com/Support/Downloads/. An user guide is available that runs App Studio users through the process of enriching content, creating apps, and managing apps can be downloaded at http://support.quark.com/documentation/QuarkXPress/9.html .

For a complete overview of App Studio, please visit: http://www.quark.com/appStudio .

For users who aren’t currently using QuarkXPress 9, Quark is offering a free, fully-functional, 30-day Test Drive version. Users who have already completed the 30-day trial of QuarkXPress 9 are welcome to take another 30-day Test Drive, this time with QuarkXPress 9.1, to experience App Studio. To download the QuarkXPress 30-day Test Drive visit http://www.quark.com/Products/quarkxpress/test_drive.aspx .

The cost of QuarkXPress 9 is the same as the previous upgrade and full Product price of QuarkXPress 8. An upgrade is $299 and new full product is $799. To purchase, visit http://shop.quark.com .