With recent changes in our educational pricing for Adobe products, it’s been a quagmire to figure out who needs what.
Since Adobe sells so many different products (as does Microsoft,) saying, “I need Adobe installed on my computer” is a lot like saying, “I need to go buy some Pillsbury at the store.”
Adobe is the name of the company, not any one specific product. Microsoft is the same; it’s the company name, and it makes many, many software titles.
How do you know what Adobe products you have and which you need?
To see what you have installed on a Windows computer, go to the Programs and Features control panel. The Adobe apps should be near the top since they are presented in alphabetical order.
It will show you the version number, when it was installed, and how much space it takes up on your computer. On a Mac, look in your Applications folder.
Every computer should have a copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on it.
The most recent version is called Adobe Acrobat Reader DC. DC stands for Doc Cloud — to give you the impression that you can store and manage your documents in the cloud, though you probably never will.
Acrobat Reader is a free application whose purpose is to view PDF files. However, in recent times, Adobe has added more capabilities to Acrobat Reader such as filling out fillable PDF forms, adding digital signature, printing, saving, and making some very simple changes.
You can find the most recent version online at https://acrobat.adobe.com/us/en/acrobat/pdf-reader.html.
If you need to split, combine and otherwise manipulate your PDFs, then you will need Acrobat Pro DC. You can also download a seven-day free trial from the website above. After that, you will need to purchase it; the cost on the web site is $14.99 per month with a one-year commitment.
Note that neither Reader nor Pro will allow you to fully edit PDFs to change the words, paginations, etc., as you would a Word document. Acrobat Pro will allow you to export the PDF to a Word format, but it will be very, very messy and difficult to edit while keeping the original format.
The numerous other products that Adobe makes are typically all part of the Creative Cloud suite — called “All Apps.”
While you can purchase the individual programs, if you need two or more, it’s less expensive to purchase All Apps.
Individual products include, but are not limited to:
Photoshop – editing pictures
InDesign – desktop publishing such as poster or newsletter layout
Premiere Pro – video editing
Audition – audio recording, mixing, and editing
Illustrator – vector graphics editor
Dreamweaver – web page creation
Acrobat Pro is also included in the All Apps package. You can view the various prices and options at https://www.adobe.com/creativecloud/plans.html.
Remember that all prices are per month and require a one-year subscription.
Adobe has many great apps; just make sure you get the one or ones you need.
Carol Sabbar is director of computer services at Carthage College. Email her at email@example.com.