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Adobe unveils new Acrobat X lineup

Latest version of the Acrobat suite aims to deliver better security, online collaboration, and a dedicated reading mode to make it easier to read PDFs.

Adobe today announced the latest version of its Acrobat suite of products.

Adobe's new Acrobat X Pro
Adobe's new Acrobat X Pro Adobe

Set to hit the market in the next 30 days, the new Reader X and Acrobat X products are promising tighter security, better collaboration, and easier PDF reading.

The free Adobe Reader X will offer a new Protected Mode to sandbox, or isolate, JavaScript code, 3D rendering, and image parsing in order to better secure PDFs. Adobe has seen an increasing number of security holes in its PDF technology over the past few years, creating trouble for the many people who use the ubiquitous file format. The company is looking to sandboxing, a feature used by Microsoft for Office and Google for Chrome, to counteract those PDF security flaws.

Beyond the tighter security, Reader X will offer Sticky Notes and Highlighter tools for people who want to add comments to a PDF. And users on the go will be able to grab mobile versions of Reader X for Android, Windows Phone 7, and the BlackBerry Tablet operating systems.

For people who need to create and edit PDFs, the Acrobat X lineup will roll out in three different versions.

Acrobat X Standard will offer a basic set of new features, including the ability to convert a PDF to a Word document or Excel spreadsheet and integration with Microsoft's SharePoint. The Standard edition will retail for $299 and offer an upgrade price of $139.

Next in time will be Acrobat X Pro, which provides additional features. PDF Portfolios will let you combine a variety of different types of files to create a single portfolio with customized themes, layouts, and logos. The new Actions feature will allow you to automate time-consuming tasks and share those with other people. The Pro version is expected to cost $449 with a $199 upgrade fee.

And Acrobat X Suite will team up Adobe Acrobat X Pro, Adobe Photoshop CS5, Adobe Captivate 5, Adobe Presenter 7, Adobe LiveCycle Designer ES2, and Adobe Media Encoder CS5. The suite will carry a price tag of $1,199 with a $799 upgrade cost.

Adobe is also unveiling a couple of new cloud-based services.

A kind of virtual post office, Adobe SendNow will let you send, receive, and keep track of large files. The idea behind this service is to help people avoid e-mail gateways that restrict file size and FTP servers that can be difficult to use. Adobe's new CreatePDF will convert a file to a PDF from within Adobe Reader X or any Web browser. Both services will debut in November.

Adobe users can now preorder any of the Acrobat X products.