Karelia Software has announced its website-building application, Sandvox.

The release occurs as some rumours claim Apple will introduce website building features of its own within 2006 versions of its iWork and iLife software bundles.

Take a look

Karelia Software’s Dan Wood said: "We have been hearing rumours of a web-building application that Apple may be announcing tomorrow. We wanted the Mac community to get a chance to see what we have to offer and compare it to whatever Apple is may be introducing.  We're only a small company, but based on our past experience, we think that our product will compare quite favourably to any competition from Apple."

He observed the need for approachable web design applications: "For years, Mach users have been clamouring for an easy, elegant way to get their content - photo albums, weblogs, just basic sites - published on the Web.  We created Sandvox because there were no other applications that 'got it.'"

Sandvox was co-developed by Wood and experienced Cocoa developer, Terrence Talbot.

Drag-&-drop website creation

The software offers drag-&-drop website assembly; live editing without a preview mode; two dozen stylish designs; and Pagelets - which are small areas of content that live inside a webpage’s sidebar.

Any collection of pages can be organized as a weblog, with automatic RSS generation.  Uploaded media, such as MP3 files and QuickTime movies, become an iTunes-compatible podcast without any additional effort.

Sandvox offers a set-up assistant and allows sites to be saved locally and also uploaded to remote hosts using FTP, SFTP, and WebDAV, including .Mac.

The product is scheduled for release later this quarter, in both standard and "pro" configurations. Pricing will be announced shortly. 

Karelia is offering a special discount on Sandvox purchases for Macworld attendees who sign up for email updates. Visit the Karelia.com website and enter "Macworld" where asked "How did you hear about us?".  For the discount, users must sign-up before January 13, 2006 at midnight (Pacific Time).