Adobe labs has come out with Digital Editions which is supposed to be a completely new way of reading and managing e-books.
Digital Editions is built from the ground up as a lightweight, rich Internet application (RIA). Digital Editions works online and offline, and supports both PDF and XHTML-based content.
This is an early Windows only beta edition released by Adobe to get a quick feedback from users. More details can be found at the FAQ section of Digital Editions. Also you can find a bunch of free e-books here.
The install was pretty easy and was done online via a flash widget. I was totally impressed by the slick UI (including the Zoom feature).
This is a snapshot of the Library items in Thumbnail mode. (Click to see the enlarged photo)
Snapshot of an PDF opened in Digital Editions.
Digital Editions is a flash based reader and it is pretty fast compared to the normal Acrobat reader. However as noted in the FAQ, this is essentially targeted for reading e-books and lacks many features of Reader.
Since the app is still in Beta, you can notice a few problems immediately.
- Open a document and switch to Reading View. UI is very sluggish when you try to resize the window.
- For some strange reason, the pages don’t scroll via the mouse wheel.
- No keyboard shortcuts 🙁
- The title of some of the documents were hiding behind the toolbar.
The future updates should handle all these problems and being a RIA application, the updates should be pushed automatically. The application is really worth trying :). As of now only the windows version is available and a Mac version should be out soon !