Adobe Document Cloud review

A dream come true for office administrators

Adobe Document Cloud review

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Unlike Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive, Adobe is directing Document Cloud at the expense report- and data management-driven world of the office administrator. It's highly unlikely that consumers will adopt this tool as their everyday document creation and storage application. However, the niche market that does use the tool will find themselves loaded with a vast feature set and a simple interface that makes PDF creation and management easier than it has ever been.

We liked

Anyone who has ever used a cloud collaboration or document creation tool will be able to begin using Document Cloud immediately. Its user interfaces on mobile devices and desktop are incredibly intuitive. Unlike other Adobe tools (ahem, Photoshop), Document Cloud makes it abundantly clear what each icon represents. Once you've clicked into a tool, the instructions and prompts provided by Adobe are fool-proof.

The amount of use cases and practical applications for each tool, especially on the Pro version, are seemingly endless. You'll likely never find yourself searching for a capability that doesn't exist. In fact, you can literally search for a capability within the search bar on the Tools page and Adobe will tell you which features are there to help you out.

Creating PDFs is as simple as snapping a photo and following a few prompts. Once you've started editing on desktop, you'll be able to add text and signatures to images in an organic manner. Because Adobe can replicate the font of whatever document you turn into a PDF, you'll never have to worry about your final documents looking cobbled together.

We disliked

The big issue here is that you can't edit PDFs on your smartphone. This seems like a missed opportunity, one that I'm sure Adobe is scurrying to correct.

Another minor problem is the crooked and curved output of images that are turned to PDFs. Unless you scan a document and turn it into a PDF on your desktop, you won't wind up with a pristine file. This isn't really an issue for someone who is just trying to file receipts for an expense report. However, if for some odd reason you're trying to snap an image of a contract to turn into a PDF, it won't look as good as it would if someone typed it up in a word processing application.

Editing a signature on your smartphone is impossibly difficult. If you don't drop your signature in at the perfect spot, you'll spend an unnecessary amount of time trying to make an adjustment. This isn't true on desktop and tablet versions, but the mobile e-sign functionality is the bedrock of this software.

Final verdict

Document Cloud's pros absolutely outweigh its cons. Adobe has turned an antiquated document management process into a more streamlined and creative artform. Handling PDFs before and after Document Cloud is almost like editing photos before and after Photoshop. The ability to sign PDFs via mobile device, turn paper into PDFs via your phone's camera, and share a PDF via a link is revolutionary. Office administrators and paper-haters will rejoice.