It’s almost a tradition now. With every second version Adobe changed the user interface of Acrobat.
This time the explanation is to facilitate the use of Acrobat on mobile devices. However the full version of Acrobat is not available for mobile devices (with the exception of the not very popular Microsoft Surface (see picture)). Acrobat DC for mobile devices has a very limited feature set.
In order to allow an easier access to the features for the users of the mobile version, millions of users of the paid full version of Acrobat Standard and Pro must now learn the user interface of the appliation from scratch and invest a lot of time for search the existing features. Long time users who have purchased every update have paid serveral thousands of Dollars/Euros/Francs to Adobe in the past. And now they must suffer in order to help the users of the free mobile version…!
The existing features of Acrobat are packed now into two dozen feature groups. Experienced users must search long time to find certain features which are sometime well hidden in one of these feature groups. In tutorial gives an overview of the new user interface.
However only the top most layers of the user interface are adapted for mobile. Once opened most of the features (e.g. Output Preview, Color Conversion) still have the old user interface which is not suited for mobile use at all.
Fortunately the tools can be adapted quite easily. One can customize the tools which go into the right hand pane as well as the tool icons in the horizontal tool bar. Some features are still missing though. The tool groups in the right hand pane can not collapse like in Acrobat XI. That requires scolling if you have added a lot of tools to your tool collection. On the bottom line you need more clicks to achive the same result than in older versions. But the UI looks “modern”… 🙁