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Intro to Conditional Content and Variants

What Are Variants?

Products are often created with multiple target groups in mind, or based on customer requirements, with specific sets of functionality for each. If these sets of functionality are mostly the same with only slight differences, each set is called a product variant.

The documentation for each variant needs to be accurate, but since most of the functionality is identical, it doesn't make sense to create a full set of documentation for each of the product variants. Instead, you use documentation variants that are shipped with the matching product variants.

Using Scroll Versions' variant management functionality, you can manage all the technical documentation for one product in the same space, even if your product has multiple variants. This applies not only for whole pages, but individual paragraphs as well.

You can use variant management without activating version management, but we highly recommend using version management with at least one version for better control of the variant's visibility. As the publishing functionality is only available when using version management, all changes in a specific variant will be automatically visible to readers.

The Difference between Variants and Versions

The difference can be somewhat hard to grasp. Consider the Amazon product "Kindle", and its successor, "Kindle Paperwhite". The original is, say, version 1.0, and the Paperwhite is version 2.0. It's an updated version of the same product. Both products are available with two connectivity options, Wifi-only or Wifi+3G. Each of these options is a variant, separate from the version. Both version 1.0 and 2.0 are available in either "Wifi only" or "Wifi+3G" variants. 

Going one step deeper, variants are made up of attributes. In this case, the "Wifi-only" variant only has one attribute, "Wifi". The "Wifi+3G" variant, meanwhile, has two: "Wifi" and "3G". 

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