Adobe Reader for Android Released


If you have used the words “Adobe” and “Android” in the same sentence in the past month, you have no doubt been talking about their work to get Flash onto smartphones as part of Android 2.2. But in all of the ensuing chaos, let’s not forget that Adobe also makes several other very useful products that have little to do with Flash, including the great PDF viewing experience that is Adobe Reader. Potentially lost in the mire of Flash 10.1 announcements is quite the little gem: Adobe has released Reader for Android.


What Reader delivers is a hands-down great PDF viewing experience on a mobile device. You get many features you just couldn’t go without including auto reorientation of the screen for portrait and landscape modes and pinch-to-zoom, but Adobe adds in a few other cool features such as a text “reflow” mode that will reformat documents containing large amounts of text for better mobile viewing. Check it all out in Adobe’s demo video at their announcement blog.

So far I’m impressed. I don’t do a lot of PDF viewing on my phone, and haven’t explored many viewer options, but I had been using Beam Reader up until this point. For a lightweight and superbly functional experience I will definitely be using Reader as my default choice from now on. (Before you go complaining that you can’t find it in the Market, Adobe Reader is currently only available for the Nexus One and Motorola Droid/Milestone, and apparently though Adobe didn’t say so, it will work on the Droid Incredible too.)


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  1. that what i hate about android they only release products for certain phones…they should be more like apple and release it for all their iphone os devices

  2. Does it bring in all the security holes (I mean “features”) that the PC version has?

  3. Nice. Less than 50 downloads…

  4. Also, works on Incredible.

  5. Wow….this would be so useful on my G1, but alas, I’ve been shafted once again…

  6. I need a new phone :(

  7. I was just able to find it on my Incredible.

  8. I can’t confirm that Adobe Reader is only available for the N1 and Droid/Milestone. I could install it from Android Market on a HTC Magic with the latest CyanogenMod (Android 2.1) without problems.

  9. The last thing I want is /anything/ written by Adobe running on my phone. They’ve already destroyed my PC experience with their bloated junkware.
    Reading PDF files is great, but does anyone really enjoy using Adobe Reader? Do you actually want that lousy experience on your phone??
    Steve Jobs is right on this one: Adobe is just plain producing junky products. Their ideas are good, the implementations are bad.

  10. It looks cool.
    I don’t use it myself but its a good bit of software.

  11. @ivan, seriously? Who is “they”? Grow up.

  12. Found it ( on my Hero ) ! . I was looking for a PDF reader last week and now I have an official one , great ..

  13. Just installed it on my G1 (CM5-test7), so they mean it needs éclair…

  14. Works fine on HTC Hero with VillainROM 5.5

  15. @jan, it might be limited to 2.1+ then, rather than just Droid and Nexus

  16. It worked fine on my Sprint Hero with Fresh Rom 2.1.1 installed.

  17. Pretty unimpressive feature-wise. I’ve been using RepliGo Reader until now, which has a lot of features that this Adobe Reader lacks such as Text Search, Text Selection, Bookmarks, Jump to Page #, etc.

    I seriously couldn’t even figure out how to open a file in Adobe Reader (There’s no “Open File” button that I can see). I had to find a PDF in Astro File Manager and launch it from there.

    There’s one positive thing I can say about it: it actually renders all my PDFs correctly. RepliGo and every other PDF viewer I’ve used have not been able to render D&D 4th ed manuals correctly – they leave funny black boxes everywhere (or can’t open large PDFs at all). Adobe Reader on the other hand renders them exactly right.

  18. DOwnloaded from market on rooted samsung moment 2. 1

  19. Just installed it on my desire. No obvious way of actually loading a file. Why not have a menu option? Why is this so hard? The default desire one ‘just works’.


  21. Works fine on my Sprint hero (2.1)

  22. Excellent on my Motor Droid! Love that it exists. Android is such a great platform.

  23. Well we’ve had quickoffice for aaaages, so whats the point?

  24. I threw at it a task that no Android reader can seem to accomplish: Open a transit map. I used Seattle’s 3 MB PDF system map. On QuickPDF, I can zoom in but everything’s blurry when I try to get enough detail to read route numbers.

    On Adobe’s Reader, any attempt to zoom in leads to a freeze, followed by the app suddenly quitting, and then getting a force close.

    I tried with a 300KB map of Vancouver transit routes (not the whole system, just the city proper). I can zoom in on any area and get a crisp image but there’s a good 10-second freeze or so before the details appear. Panning reveals sweet white nothingness until the map loads another 10 seconds later. Not very useful overall.

    Will someone please put out an app that handles large transit maps efficiently? A good model for this is Transit Maps for iPhone:
    Granted, this app sort of “cheats” by saving flat images of sections of the map for future easy loading. But you know what? It works. And it’s the only app I’ve found on my iPod Touch that does the trick. And I haven’t found an Android app that does. So when I travel, even though my handy Android can do nearly anything, I still whip out the Touch for transit maps.

    Please, developers, help me to *not* need Apple hardware anymore!

  25. Crap, so sick of not being able to have access to apps, i hate this crap with a is a freakin nightmare…hero, 1.5 non rootable..crap crap crap freakin phone is only 5 months old..ridiculous

  26. works perfect in my htc hero

  27. it works fine on my magic running CM5..
    I don’t know what you’re talking about

  28. @bill Hero got 2.1 last week. They have been selling it more far more than 5 months.

  29. We did not get 2.1 and my phone was bought 5 months ago, we are being told july/august for our update, was feb, then june, then july, now july/august. non rootable(without serious 3g and camera issues) cellularsouth cdma 1.5 hero

    this os is too fragmented between os versions, and handeset ui as well as hardware specs…never know what will be compatible, or for how long..too damn schizo if you ask me. My carrier promised they would keep up with the updates, i questioned them and asked if it was up to the handset maker or them, they said it was up to them, not the handset maker and they said they would have all updates almost as fast as they could be released by Google, not to worry…hell, they are still advertising the hero as new and 1.5 os as up to date.

    this os should have been set up for anyone wanting to download and install to have been able to do it…should not have to hack a phone to get it to work..soooo frustrating..just way too many quirks and incompatibilities, finger pointing as to who is responsible, ie carrier, google, oem, etc etc etc….

  30. I have a GSM Hero. It comes with a PDF reader that works fine.

  31. Works on 2.1 and up…..only. Yep, another failure added to the likes of Android. Not impressed Google, not impressed.

  32. @Chris (11), Adobe Reader is one of the most commonly used software in the planet. To get statistics about download details go to

    As far as security holes are concerned even the Safari browser has some. See

  33. Well I just threw a 40mb fairly complicated PDF at it and it loaded fine on my CM5’d Magic (wasn’t exactly snappy but not slow either). Pretty sure it’s quicker than the HTC loaded Quickoffice but that was on stock android 1.5 anyway.

  34. Many, many comments in the Market for this app say it is very slow and has other issues, like no Go-To feature. I think I’ll skip it.

    There’s a NYC Subway & Bus Map reader in the Market that works pretty good for the gigantic NYC subway map. Maybe the same company makes other map-PDF-reading products…

  35. works on HTC EVO but it won’t open password protected ebooks i purchased from o’reilly. Seems kind of lame considering the documents to go reader is able to open the same password protected pdf.

  36. Found it just fine on my Droid Eris with 2.1. Apparently it is 2.1-specific, not device-specific.

  37. i tried the stock .pdf with “thinkfree office” to view a pipeline field map. Couldn’t see clear numbers/writing etc with zoomed in, so found this one and just downloaded for my Galaxy S (Sasktel–Canada), works fantastic! zooming/panning and clear legible details. Opened user manual (pdf) and this one works ALOT better than stock viewer (above). This one opens a little slower, but i can zoom and at least view maps etc and it is FREE! Awesome! thanks to the dev team!!!

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