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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

New Release: Ektron 9

Ektron is one of Fig Leaf’s preferred content management systems. Fig Leaf is happy to be an Ektron Elite Partner and to have such a close working relationship with the visionary technology company. Ektron has recently announced a new version upgrade to their product, Ektron version 9, with many exciting benefits for customers. Typically, Ektron releases a major product update every year, and they do a great job adapting to customer needs and changes in the technology world.

After playing around with Ektron 9 for over a month now, Fig Leaf is very excited about the product release and recommends Ektron clients to upgrade. Below are some of the key highlights of the new version.

Mobile Improvements
Over 40% of site visitors come from a mobile device, a statistic from a recent web trends study. Ektron has truly understood the importance of mobile when it comes to website redesign, and has made it much easier to edit content for mobile responsive sites.

When editing in Ektron 9, the author has the ability to edit within the views of various mobile devices. For example, there are two default devices, Tablet and Smartphone, that come with this functionality. The user can further expand the number of groups by adding multiple types of Smartphones and Tablets, for example Blackberry, Nokia, and iPhone groupings. Some images may show better on one device over the other device, so the author can easily view this and adjust the images while editing.

View_devices.png

To access the mobile views, there is a “mobile preview” tab in a user’s toolbar when they are editing. This allows them to check content for an optimized display on mobile devices before the content is published. When images are uploaded, Ektron 9 also will automatically make the images responsive, so that they adapt to the device where they are displayed.

Better User Experience
One of the key factors in choosing a CMS is the user experience. If content editors have a good experience, then they are more likely to update the site with new and engaging content. Ektron 9 has done a great job to improve the user experience in the product.

Because of the proliferation of mobile usage, Ektron has done a great job of making content editing through mobile devices easier. Ektron calls the editing experience “finger-friendly” for mobile editors, so editors can easily view their work and update pages on the go. One improvement to help mobile editors is the new and improved Ektron toolbar. The toolbar allows for a seamless user experience when editing content outside of the Ektron workarea, and is 508 and WCAG compliant.

Ektron_toolbar.png

I’ve had the chance to talk to Fig Leaf’s Ektron developers about the product, and they all agree that Ektron’s user experience is far above their competitors, and a key differentiator for the product as a whole.

Integration with SOLR Search
Many of Fig Leaf’s clients have chosen to use SOLR search for their website because it is an open-source search that allows the developers to have full control over their search parameters. Fig Leaf can integrate an out-of-the-box search engine such as Google Search, but the new Ektron 9 now seamlessly integrates with SOLR search as well. If an Ektron user was using the existing Framework API and template controls for Microsoft Search Server, then that same code can be reused with SOLR with Ektron 9.

Amazon Web Hosting Improvements
Fig Leaf recommends Amazon for web hosting, and Ektron 9 has come out with a couple updates in the cloud manager to improve the Amazon experience. The Auto-Scaling feature allows users to manage their resources and use only the amount of storage that they need, and the Cloudfront CDN feature allows Ektron users to add the Amazon Cloudfront Service to their account.


Based on the exciting improvements in Ektron 9, Fig Leaf is recommending clients to upgrade at this time. Please contact us for a Free Ektron Upgrade Evaluation: 202-797-7711 x 116


Written by: Arya Heidari

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