Adobe makes argument for Acrobat as collaborative tool

Adobe makes argument for Acrobat as collaborative tool

Vendor focuses on spreading the word through New Zealand channels

Digital content solutions provider Adobe earlier this month rolled out the latest edition of its Acrobat programme, Acrobat XI.

And the company hopes to build momentum for the product, in part by demonstrating to the channel that Acrobat is more than just looking at data.

“My role is to work really hard with the reseller channel, getting this message in front of the distributors first,” says Earl Tipene, who joined Adobe in June as a solutions consultant. “The first four months on the job for me has been ‘Hey, did you know this?’ and showing the channel things they may not have been aware of before of what they can do for their customers.”

Acrobat XI comes in three flavours, with the Pro version likeliest to create interest for resellers working with business customers. New features include better integration with PowerPoint, Word and Excel, as well as security functions that can protect documents from being modified by users without proper permissions.

The integration is aimed allowing modification to documents without altering how the documents appear.

Adobe cites research of organisations with 1000 workers which the vendor commissioned, that suggests that companies waste a significant amount of time on chasing up documents because of a lack of mutual support among various software packages.

While Acrobat enjoys a reputation for broadcasting documents, Tipene says it is one of the most underutilised applications in the Adobe suite.

“It’s everywhere, but people think of it as just for viewing PDFs,” he says. “That’s why we want toget people to know about it.”

Acrobat allows PDFs to be saved directly as Word, Excel or PowerPoint files. The new edition also supports the creation and collation of data through Form Central, which is an application that now ships with Acrobat. It also includes technology for users to sign off on documents as they make changes to files in a collaborative setting. This came from Adobe’s 2011 acquisition of EcoSign.

Adobe distributes through Express Data and Ingram Micro in New Zealand. Tipene says there are between 30 and 40 resellers that Adobe works with now in selling Acrobat as a business solution. He says that after talking to the distributors, it’s his job to evangelise the product among resellers.

Suzie Brady, communications manager for Adobe, say that the vendor should have enough customers on board with Acrobat XI to launch with some local use case scenarios to help bring new resellers on board.

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