Matt Jones Matt Jones | 30 Oct 2018

Bringing together partners from all over Europe and as far afield as Canada and Australia, the event is a great opportunity for getting up to speed with the innovative developments of one of the leading WCM platforms.

Attending the event were our Account Manager, Andy Precious, and myself Matt Jones, along with around 250 other Kentico enthusiasts.

Location for the event – Lobkowicz Palace, Prague

The event covered many aspects of the Kentico suite but the focus was on the highly anticipated launch of Kentico 12 (due for release at the end of November) and Kentico’s headless CMS solution, “Kentico Cloud”.

The event kicked off with a keynote speech from Kentico CEO Petr Palas, setting out his vision for the platform as he talked about the increasing shift towards cloud-based services. He then went on to discuss the advantages of headless solutions, particularly in relation to omnichannel content delivery.

His speech was both interesting and ambitious. You can read more about his views on this subject on his own blog here

Kentico 12 – “The Raptor”

Kentico 12, who’s codename during production was “The Raptor”, is the latest offering in the traditional CMS space. Though don’t let that fool you, K12 brings some fundamental and exciting improvements to performance, speed to market and overall user experience.

The most significant of these enhancements is the move from portal engine (based on web forms) to a platform based on Model View Controller (MVC). Whilst some might see this neither “exciting” or “fundamental”... The implications of this shift are huge.

The move to an MVC approach brings loads of user benefits, including:

  • Cleaner code - resulting faster page load times and better SEO scores
  • Simpler development process – making Dev’s lives easier, plus saving clients’ time & money
  • Easier updates – again saving time, money and headaches, whilst also future proofing the platform
  • Greater control over content and an interface that is simpler and more intuitive to use.

Kentico’s Product Owner, David Komarek, went on to demonstrate some of the developments of Kentico 12 and what this means for end clients. He touched on the move away from page templates to a more drag-and-drop widget-based approach.

Widgets have been a focus for Kentico in previous versions, but the way this is implemented in K12 really empowers users to take more control over how content is used and displayed, without being limited by rigid page templates.

Content personalisation has also been a key part of Kentico in previous versions. Now, with K12, this has been taken to the next level, allowing content editors to create variants faster and more efficiently than ever.  

Kentico Cloud – the Headless CMS

Alongside the chatter around the imminent release of Kentico 12, another key focus of the event was to outline the continued emphasis on Kentico Cloud.

With the decline in sales of PC’s and the onward march in the use of mobile and other devices, headless CMS seems the natural route for platforms to take. It’s safe to say Kentico are truly invested with this idea and are carving a path for their cloud-based solution.

In his presentation, Kentico’s Ondrej Sirocka talked about the future of content delivery with the focus on chatbots and Al. By structuring content to work with any platform, it’s possible to future-proof content to be delivered across any platform. As wearables and smart devices continue to explode onto the market, the long-term implications of this aren’t to be understated.

We share Kentico’s view that both Kentico 12 and Kentico Cloud solutions have their merits but choosing the right Kentico application requires an in-depth understanding of the organisations business objectives. Only then can a decision be made on which solution is going to be the best fit for your business.

The Future

The changes due to be released in K12 will undoubtably strengthen Kentico’s position in the marketplace and make it a real contender at the forefront of WCM. If you haven't already, then read last month’s article on Kentico’s position in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for an overview of where Kentico sits in the WCM landscape.

Ultimately, what we confirmed at the event was that Kentico continue to offer great value when compared to other market leaders. The platforms are getting slicker and more refined with every release and, now, with the move to MVC, Kentico offers a credible alternative for those organisations looking for an enterprise solution but without the budget for Sitecore or Adobe.