Quark announced a slew of new features for its forthcoming QuarkXPress 7.0 at Chicago's Print '05 today. Through Composition Zones, Job Jackets, and other new and enhanced features, QuarkXPress 7 will make desktop collaboration "simple, consistent, and efficient", says the company, which believes that it now has the beating of Adobe's upstart InDesign DTP software.

With composition zones, page layout artists, editors and other creative professionals can work on the same page simultaneously and view each other’s changes automatically.

Using Job Jackets, workgroups can share specifications across workstations, and the Synchronization palette allows teams to maintain consistent design through the synchronization of text, pictures, and item attributes.

“The enhanced graphics capabilities of QuarkXPress 7 make the design experience more satisfying than ever. With creativity flowing this naturally, creative professionals can work together more effectively, and QuarkXPress 7 makes parallel workflows a reality,” said Juergen Kurz, senior vice president of product development at Quark.

“By delivering these tools, QuarkXPress 7 will help customers achieve their creative goals while managing their businesses efficiently. We’re excited to take publishing software to this next level.”

“As an XTensions developer for over 15 years, I’ve found that QuarkXPress 7 represents a quantum leap in the sheer volume of advanced functions and interfaces,” said Donal O’Connor, owner of Compusense Ltd.

“The collaborative features, Job Jackets, and transparency options alone will reinforce that QuarkXPress has always been, and remains, the world’s leading publishing software.”

For a full preview of QuarkXPress 7.0, see the October 2005 issue of Macworld on-sale today.

Quark Product Architect Dan Logan will be speaking about XPress 7.0 exclusively at the Macworld Conference 2005. Spaces are extremely limited, so it is highly recommended that places are booked well in advance. Other Conference speakers include David Pogue on Mac OS X, Deke McClelland on Adobe Photoshop, and Andy Ihnatko on iLife and and OS X.