updated 07:05 pm EDT, Mon September 25, 2006
Acrobat 8 to be Universal
Adobe has confirmed that Acrobat 8, announced last week, will be a Universal Binary, making it the fourth application the company has released with native support for both Intel-based Macs and legacy PowerPC-based Macs. The Universal Acrobat 8 will be available as part of an upgrade to its suite of applications for creative professionals, Creative Suite 2.3, which was announced last week and is expected to ship in November. Acrobat, however, will be the only application that supports Intel-based Macs natively, according to the company. "Acrobat 8 is currently the only product in Creative Suite 2.3 that is Universal Binary," an Adobe representative told MacNN. "The next release of the Creative Suite and its point products, including Dreamweaver, will support Universal Binary. We have made it clear recently that Dreamweaver will be replacing GoLive in future versions of Creative Suite and that GoLive will continue development as a standalone product." [updated]
To date, Adobe has released Flash Player, its free DWG Converter for RAW file conversion, and Photoshop Lightroom beta as Universal Binaries. The company also promised to develop an Intel-native version of Macromedia Director, after rumors surfaced that the product may be dropped following Adobe's acquisition of Macromedia.
While Acrobat 8 will be integrated with other Creative Suite applications, other products in the suite will only run on Intel-based Macs under the Rosetta emulation environment. Although Rosetta provides support for many non-Universal applications, users typically experience a significant performance decrease -- in many cases rendering memory- and resource- intensive applications almost unusable.
Users can expect Adobe to deliver Universal versions of the other applications with the next release. Adobe said it was making "good progress" on the Universal versions of the CS applications, including Dreamweaver 8, which will be bundled with Creative Suite 2.3.
"We are making good progress and we have consistently said that customers can expect a major release of our creative products in Spring 2007," Adobe told MacNN. The company however, was unable to commit to support for the next version of the Mac OS X operating system, Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, which was formally announced at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference in August and is expected to be released early next year.
"As far as Leopard compatibility goes, we have a good record of dove-tailing with Apple's OS releases as they come to market," the company said.
Adobe, however, refused to divulge any further details on the Universal version of Photoshop, which was demonstrated at Photoshop World earlier this month, as well as other products in the Creative Suite such as Illustrator, ImageReady, Flash, Fireworks, and Director. Despite questions about the status of each of the application, progress on the development of Universal Binaries, and whether it had Universal versions of each running internally on Intel-based Macs, the company provided the same answer: "Customers can expect a major release of our creative products in Spring 2007."
All of Adobe's Creative Suite applications run on Intel-based Macs under Apple's Rosetta emulation environment, which the company says "should offer most existing applications a basic compatibility;" the company, however, does not provide any official support for Rosetta.