Acrobat Reader version adoption rates

Posted on 2004-11-24
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Does anybody have any statistics on the number of users still using older versions of Reader (i.e. 4 and 5) and how many have upgraded to version 6?

Question by:befidled
    LVL 44

    Expert Comment

    by:Karl Heinz Kremer
    I don't think Adobe releases this information - at least I've never seen this data. You can probably assume that there are lots of people out there still using Reader 5, and some still at Reader 4. But, because Reader is free, if you require a certain Reader version, just put up a link to Adobe's download server and tell your users to upgrade - and let them know what they are missing by not having version X installed.
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    I'm not missing anything. I'd like to know the adoption rates so that I can sound somewhat informed when discussing the issue with my clients.
    LVL 44

    Accepted Solution

    You may want to direct this question directly to Adobe. As I said, it does not look like Adobe is advertising this information on their web site.

    If you don't get more information, here are a few of my ideas: Computer users are lazy, so if they got a computer with Acrobat Reader 4 pre-installed, and they never run into any problems, chances are that they are still running Reader 4. They will upgrade to a new version when they upgrade their computer, or when they find a good enough reason to download a rather huge package (about 16MB for 6.0.1 if you accept the defaults, 8.7MB if you turn any options off). There are a number of operating systems, which cannot run Adobe Reader 6. The most common one is probably Windows 98 (or 95) which is supported by Reader 5.0.5. Also, the Unix version of Reader was never upgraded to 6, so for Solaris or Linux, you would still need to run 5.0.9 (or earlier). If you are still running IBM's OS/2, you are stuck with Reader 3.

    Looking back at the different versions since 4, there was never a really good reason to upgrade. This may change with the just announced Acrobat 7 (and Reader 7).

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