Following the trend of other software companies that launch their new products in beta before the final version arrives, Adobe has published the first betas of their upcoming CS4 suite.
Unfortunately not all the Adobe-Macromedia applications are available at this point. Only Dreamweaver CS4 (Windows/Mac), Fireworks CS4 (Windows/Mac) and Soundbooth CS4 (only Mac) have been released to the public in order to let users test the new functionalities and, at the same time, provide some feeback if necessary.
The three new betas offer quite an array of new features. Dreamweaver for example now includes integration with Subversion support for Adobe AIR authoring and a new code navigator – all perfectly wrapped up in a totally revamped user interface – together with the so called Live View mode, with which you can view your web pages under real browser conditions while still having access to the code.
Fireworks also boasts a redesigned interface as well, along with CSS and image export, PDF export and AIR authoring as well to create your Adobe AIR apps in Fireworks and deploy them directly to HTML, CSS or Flash.
Last but not least, Soundbooth features support for multitrack sound editing, plus the ability to preview MP3 compression settings before saving and an enhanced Soundbooth Score workflow.
Unfortunately there’s a catch: these CS4 beta versions let you test the programs only for 48 hours (way too strict, in my opinion). This ridiculously reduced trial period can be extended up until the final version comes out, but only if you’re a registered CS3 user. Otherwise you’ll have to make good use of those 48 hours if you want to fully test the new Adobe CS4 betas.