SAN JOSE, Calif. — Sept. 18, 2006 — Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) today introduced the Adobe® Acrobat® Connect™ software product line, the first web conferencing and collaboration solution to offer “always-on” personal meeting rooms. The product line, consisting of Adobe Acrobat Connect and Adobe Acrobat Connect Professional, enables knowledge workers to instantly connect online with nothing more than a web browser and the ubiquitous Flash® Player software. Together with Adobe Acrobat 8 software (see separate release issued today), the expanded Acrobat family accelerates the flow of business by allowing people to easily work together in real-time.
The new, extended Acrobat family brings together the two critical components of knowledge work, documents and people. The Acrobat 8 product line offers knowledge workers a complete PDF document solution; and the Acrobat Connect product line brings real-time, interactive web conferencing and collaboration within the reach of everyone.
“We believe web collaboration needs to be as easy as sending and viewing a PDF document, so anyone can reap the benefits of meeting online in real-time,” said Tom Hale, senior vice president, Knowledge Worker Business Unit, Adobe. “Since nearly everyone already has the Flash Player installed, Acrobat Connect makes it extremely easy to go from looking at your computer screen to sharing it with others, regardless of their platform or version of software.”
Unlike traditional web conferencing solutions, Acrobat Connect enables users to choose a simple and easy-to-remember web address for their online personal meeting room, with unlimited usage for up to 15 participants for one low monthly fee. The personal meeting rooms in Acrobat Connect are readily available, making it easy for knowledge workers to hold spontaneous, ad-hoc meetings, while helping to save time and increase productivity. A custom URL enables fast and easy-to-remember access to each user's personal meeting room, just like a phone number or e-mail address.
The Acrobat Connect hosted service provides users with essential collaboration tools, such as screen sharing, whiteboarding, chat, video conferencing, and audio conferencing. Acrobat Connect enables anyone with a Flash software-enabled web browser to join a web meeting without having to download cumbersome software. Because the Flash Player is installed on more than 97 percent of Internet-connected computers worldwide, the experience of joining an online meeting is hassle-free. Additionally, with one-button “Start Meeting” access from Acrobat 8 and Adobe Reader® 8 software, users can also launch Acrobat Connect directly from a document to start collaborating immediately.
For online meetings with multiple presenters, online events, and live virtual classrooms, Acrobat Connect Professional provides power users and larger organizations with a full-featured web conferencing solution. Beyond the baseline functionality of Acrobat Connect, Acrobat Connect Professional offers a rich set of collaboration tools. These include support for large meetings, reporting, content management, extensive user and meeting management capabilities, support for interactive multimedia, integrated telephony, and Voice over Internet Protocol. In addition, developers can use the Acrobat Connect Collaboration Builder SDK to create custom interactive applications such as engaging learning games and simulations.
“Casual web conferencing users have different needs than intensive users,” said Jeffrey Mann, Research Vice President for Gartner, Inc. “Lightweight collaboration requires easy-to-use tools in order to spread throughout an organization. Users participating in processes which require intensive use of collaborative functionality need more capabilities. Catering for both use cases will increase flexibility and enable richer interactions.”
Organizations can deploy Acrobat Connect Professional in either an on-premise, behind the firewall configuration, or through Adobe's hosted service. The on-premise solution provides IT departments with increased control, and eases integration with other enterprise systems while reducing the overall cost of ownership. Additional solutions for rapid training and online events are available under the Adobe Connect brand, formerly known as Macromedia® Breeze® software.
The entire Acrobat family consists of Acrobat 8 Professional, Acrobat 8 Standard, Acrobat 8 Elements, Acrobat 3D Version 8, Acrobat Connect, and Acrobat Connect Professional.
The Acrobat Connect hosted service is expected to be available in November 2006 as a free trial version through the end of the calendar year. The commercial release of Acrobat Connect, initially available in English, is expected to be available in early 2007 for a subscription price of US$39/month, or US$395/year per user. Acrobat Connect Professional is expected to be available in December 2006. It is expected to be available in English, German, French, Japanese, and Korean and will be licensed on a named user, as well as concurrent port basis. Existing licensed customers of the Macromedia Breeze solution with up-to-date maintenance plans may be eligible for updates to Acrobat Connect Professional and new versions of the Adobe Connect servers. For more information, visit www.adobe.com/acrobat/ .
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Adobe Systems Incorporated