Adobe announces pricing, availability of Acrobat XI, Reader XI

It is just a month shy of two years since the last major version of Acrobat, Adobe Acrobat X, and Monday, Adobe announced pricing and availability of the newest version of its PDF software, Acrobat XI.

Approaching its 20th year of working with PDF files, Acrobat XI is still mainly for editing and exporting PDF files. In this version, a simple edit text and images tool lets users click and drag to edit paragraphs, text, and images, and users can also merge selected content and multiple documents into a single PDF easily.

Part of the present and future viability of the PDF as a business document hinges upon its portability to the mobile space (it is the Portable Document Format, after all) so Adobe has also announced touch-friendly tablet capabilities in Adobe Reader XI for iOS, Android and, perhaps most importantly, Windows 8, which lets users annotate and add comments, as well as fill in, sign, and save forms.

This capability is essential to complete the picture for Acrobat XI's Web contracting and forms creation capabilities, especially with the e-signature capabilities brought to Acrobat through Adobe's EchoSign acquisition last year, bolstered by the data collection and analysis of FormsCentral, which also launched last year.

For deployment in the enterprise, Acrobat XI and Reader XI can be run as centrally managed virtual applications with new support for Microsoft App-V via Citrix XenApp. It also "plays well" with Microsoft Office and SharePoint, and supports Microsoft SCCM/SCUP and Apple Remote Desktop.

Adobe on Monday said Acrobat XI is "scheduled to ship within 30 days," with availability to its software via retail, on the Adobe Webstore, through Adobe Direct Sales, or through the Adobe Creative Cloud. Adobe told us this means it will be available thirty days from today, though ordering is not yet available on their site.

Acrobat XI Standard has an MSRP of $299/$139 for the upgrade package. Acrobat XI Pro will cost $449/$199. A download of Reader XI will be free when Acrobat ships. The lowest tier of Adobe EchoSign still costs $14.95/month, and Adobe FormsCentral subscriptions start at $14.99/month.

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