Adobe has released a major feature update to the Free Adobe Reader for iOS (and Android). While you might be asking “do I really need Reader on my iDevice since it has PDF support built-in?” I would ask you to look at and compare the list of features first. While iOS does have good support for PDF built right in and there are some great PDF Apps out there that go beyond what iOS can do, the Reader has support for things that aren’t built-in to iOS and usually are available in paid Apps…


Sticky Notes

You can now create sticky note comments and place them anywhere on the document. You can modify existing sticky note comments, or move them to a different location on the page, or delete them. And all this with simple touch gestures! Simply long press on any location of the page to add a sticky note at that location, or go via the dedicated Commenting Toolbar at the top.

Text Markups

Reader 10.2 supports creation, modification and deletion of text markup annotations, including Highlights, Strikeouts and Underlines. The easiest way to add these is by selecting some text (via the long-press gesture) and then choosing Highlight, Strikeout or Underline from the context menu. If you’re looking to use multiple Commenting tools in succession, you can use the Commenting Toolbar, and very easily create multiple comments in a single session. Also, the Reader allows you to change properties such as color and opacity of text markup annotations, or clear/delete a comment, by simply selecting it and using the context menu.

Free-hand drawing tool

Did you miss the scribble or drawing tool on your tablet or phone? Wait no more! Reader 10.2 brings with it full support for creating free-hand annotations – just choose the ‘Freehand’ option from the context menu, or the Pencil button from the Commenting Toolbar, and you’ll be presented with a full-screen canvas where you can showoff your artistic talents! You can also modify properties of an existing drawing such as color, opacity and thickness, and choose to move/resize or delete a drawing that you no longer need. And all these changes are saved back into your PDF document seamlessly in the background!

Ink Signature <-a big one

Reader 10.2 also brings in a very useful feature that lets you place your signature on documents right within the Reader, that would otherwise require you to go via the Print > Sign > Scan workflow. Again, you can do this by choosing the Signature button from the Commenting Toolbar, or via the ‘Signature’ option from the context menu. Pretty easy!

Acrobat Forms

PDF forms are widely used by end users, enterprises, government, and other sectors for reliable data exchange, and Adobe Reader 10.2 brings all new support for filling and submitting these forms right from your phone or tablet device! Note that in this release only PDF forms created by Acrobat are supported, and not those created by Adobe LiveCycle Designer.

Adobe EchoSign Integration

With Reader 10.2, you can now get your PDF documents signed in minutes using Adobe EchoSign. Simply choose the ‘Send for Signature’ option from the menu and you’re ready to go! For more information about Adobe EchoSign, click here.

PDF links

Reader 10.2 introduces support for both intra-document links (like Table of Contents) and web links. Also, it’s easy in Reader 10.2 to identify such links as they’ll show up with a light blue background.

Document Security

For document with certain restrictions, Adobe Reader honors those restrictions. For example, if the author of the PDF document has disallowed commenting, then Adobe Reader 10.2 will honor that and will not allow commenting on it.

Search files in File Browser

In this update we’ve also added the neat little feature that lets you quickly search for files in your Documents list. On iOS, just scroll the documents list down and you’ll see the Search Bar emerge from the top; and on Android, tap on the search glass icon on the top right to bring up the Search Bar. As you start typing the name (or part of name) of the document you’re looking for, the search list will be filtered based on that text. So, no need for frantic scrolls in long document lists any more!

Thumbnails in File Browser

Another neat enhancement to the File Browser is the display of thumbnails for files recently opened in the Reader. This makes it easy to identify recently viewed files, and provides for a richer experience.

Other enhancements

Some other enhancements in Reader 10.2 include:

Enhancements to performance and responsiveness

Email attachments opened in Android Reader are now stored on permanent storage, and are available for view/modification even after the document is closed.

The last viewed position in a document is remembered and restored when the document is re-opened at a later time. This is new on iOS with Reader 10.2, and already exists on Android since Reader 10.1.1.

Enhancements to Portfolios list and File Attachments on iOS: You can now view non-PDF children in PDF portfolios, and PDF File attachments on the iOS Reader. These capabilities already exist on Android since Reader 10.1.1