Adobe unveils new community site & Acrobat new version

It isn't only Google that is challenging the Microsoft's on-premise Office and SharePoint productivity and collaboration suites with hosted, online versions of similar applications. Adobe has made a move into on-line document sharing sector. Acrobat announced its community site at the same time when the newer version of Adobe's Acrobat software with flash player is launched.

Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro Extended

Adobe Acrobat is considered the almighty force in PDF software. The beta version of Acrobat 9, a smarter and more flexible version, proves its credentials further. The new version of Adobe reader, Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro Extended, has come up with the biggest and best enhancements that Acrobat has seen in a long time.

The Acrobat 9 comprises of three big new features.

  • Ability to build PDF portfolios: Users can now combine multiple types of files, video, audio and even 3-D objects, in a single PDF document. They can select from different layouts or create their own to integrate content. Options are provided to define navigation.

  • Easy view of video files: Now the video files can be stored in PDF files that can be viewed by all of those who uses Adobe Reader 9, whether or not they have specific video codecs installed on their system.

  • Document-comparison feature: This feature eases out the worries of collaborative work on complex PDF files.

The new advanced collaboration features along with other miscellaneous improvements add to the appeal of this major release. Above all, this enhanced version doesn't need learning an entirely new application, as Acrobat 9 largely sticks to the user interface familiar since version 8.

Acrobat Community Site

Adobe announced the launch of the community site, a move into online document sharing. It helps the users create, store and share documents online. Users can also hold web conferences to discuss changes. At the time, the service can be used only in trial, or beta, form, but any user can easily sign up.

Acrobat community site includes the following online tools:

  • Adobe Buzzword: Buzzword word processor lets you create basic text documents. These files are stored on the net and invite others to collaborate, read or comment. Such a type of collaboration allows the creation of web conferences, where co-authors can join on and discuss a topic or document in real time.

  • Adobe ConnectNow: It is a personal web conferencing service, which includes desktop sharing, video and voice conferencing and integrated chat.

  • Centralized online file-sharing with access controls, online PDF conversion for up to five documents, and support for Web-embeddable documents;

  • Developer APIs for real-time collaboration, file sharing and conversion.

The trial version permits one user to convert up to five documents per month to the PDF format free of charge. You can easily embed these documents on a website or a blog. Adobe also announced that it would make the programming interfaces for the site available so others can plug it into their own services. The services of can be used without buying any other Adobe products.

Most of the advancements in Acrobat 9 provide ways for the users of PDF, Adobe Flash and Adobe AIR technologies to take the advantages of the tools offered in

In comaprison to Google and Microsoft, Adobe is entering relatively late to the market for business document and file sharing on the web. Microsoft set up a trial version of Office Live Workspace in October 2007 that lets people get at and share Word, Excel and Powerpoint files via the web. Google also runs a similar system through its online documents service. The service pits Adobe squarely against Microsoft, Google and others keen to bridge the online and offline worlds.

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