Windows 8 to include its own PDF reader

By on April 5, 2011, 10:00 AM
Microsoft is planning on including its own Portable Document Format (PDF) reader in Windows 8 called Modern Reader. This is the first app discovered to be utilizing the new AppX application package type, as revealed by Rafael Rivera and Paul Thurrott and posted at SuperSite.

Modern Reader displays PDFs just as you would expect. It includes functions for zooming in and out, and it also has a page scrubber on the side of the application window for document navigation (a Back button appears in the upper left corner so you can return to your previous spot). It also supports side-by-side page views.

Windows does not include its own PDF reader. This is likely because of how popular the operating system is: Adobe has made it clear in the past that Microsoft would never get away with such a move.

Back when Microsoft was developing Office 2007, it promised to support exporting to PDF. Adobe made legal objections, and Office 2007 originally did not offer PDF support out of the box, but rather as a separate free download. As of Service Pack 2, however, Office has allowed users to natively save their document as PDF files.

We're not sure if Microsoft has talked to Adobe about the new feature for Windows yet. It might be alright if it's only a PDF reader, but then again, Microsoft has had many similarly simple antitrust issues to deal with before.




User Comments: 19

Got something to say? Post a comment
Staff
Per Hansson Per Hansson, TS Server Guru, said:

Can we please can this awful screenshot?

It just looks dreadful to me, sorry

About the article, I'm sure even Microsoft can't up Adobe one when it comes to writing vulnerable code for a PDF viewer, so I'd say this is good news...

You could just install Chrome of course, which has it's own PDF reader and also sandboxes the dreadful other Adobe application which is guilty of a big host of vulnerabilities itself; Flash

-Does it show I'm not a fan of Adobe?

mario mario, Ex-TS Developer, said:

Yes, please change that dreadful screen it really is kind of freaky.

I thinks it's great that Windows will include this feature specially since Adobe Reader is kind of a bloatware and to get Foxit Reader you have to navigate through a bunch of links to find the free version.

I would imagine they would also integrate a plugin for browsers or at least for IE to render the PDFs inline.

Emil said:

Screenshot changed.

lawfer, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Per Hansson said:

Can we please can this awful screenshot?

It just looks dreadful to me, sorry

About the article, I'm sure even Microsoft can't up Adobe one when it comes to writing vulnerable code for a PDF viewer, so I'd say this is good news...

You could just install Chrome of course, which has it's own PDF reader and also sandboxes the dreadful other Adobe application which is guilty of a big host of vulnerabilities itself; Flash

-Does it show I'm not a fan of Adobe?

No but it does show you're a fan of Chrome. Really, why would you install a browser to open PDF files.

mario mario, Ex-TS Developer, said:

@lawfer I would not install Chrome just to open PDFs, I would have it already installed since it is the best browser experience on Windows, in my humble opinion. So that would just be an extra feature I get by having it

Of course I just use use Windows occasionally for testing.

lawfer, TechSpot Paladin, said:

marioestrada said:

@lawfer I would not install Chrome just to open PDFs, I would have it already installed since it is the best browser experience on Windows, in my humble opinion. So that would just be an extra feature I get by having it

Of course I just use use Windows occasionally for testing.

Chrome the best browser experience? That is as subjective as saying driving a motorcycle is better than driving a car, or vice versa. But your opinion is humble, so I respect that.

However, it has nothing to do with downloading Chrome and using that feature, as I personally use it as my second browser and I do use the feature myself; its more like, why would you download a browser for the specific purpose of using its built-in PDF reader, which just so happens to be inferior to standalone software? I was judging <i>that</i>, not Chrome's built-in feature.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I think Adobe needs all the friends it can get at this moment, since their cash cow has turned their back on them.

Rafael Rivera? I wonder if that's the same guy whose instructions I used to bypass WGA when using Windows Update?

Staff
Per Hansson Per Hansson, TS Server Guru, said:

Emil said:

Screenshot changed.

Thank you

lawfer said:

No but it does show you're a fan of Chrome. Really, why would you install a browser to open PDF files.

I don't, I use Opera as my main browser

And neither do I use Chrome's PDF reader much, even if I have to.

I much prefer PDF-XChange Viewer;

[link]

Lokalaskurar Lokalaskurar said:

Oh, would Adobe approve of Windows including a PDF reader? Because the only company I know that's more "jurisdictionally" correct than Microsoft, is Adobe. I predict yet another clash of the titans coming soon...

Whoaman said:

Yet another Apple OS X feature rip. MS is just chock full of innovative new ideas.

Wagan8r Wagan8r said:

Whoaman said:

Yet another Apple OS X feature rip. MS is just chock full of innovative new ideas.

Nobody cares for your persistent Microsoft flaming.

Can OSX run on ARM processors?

Whoaman said:

wagan8r said:

Nobody cares for your persistent Microsoft flaming.

'cept for you apparently. :P

Next headline: Windows 8 to be called OS VIII Chameleon

Guest said:

Yet another Apple OS X feature rip. MS is just chock full of innovative new ideas.

Good point. Adobe should have to sue Apple first.

And last I checked, there are a dozen free PDF readers around. How can Adobe sue MS for including a PDF reader when they offer their own one free anyway?

Whoaman said:

"Apple's Mac OS X operating system uses a central window server (created entirely by Apple) that caches window graphics as PDF, instead of storing and executing PostScript code. A graphics library called Quartz 2D provides PostScript-style imaging using the PDF rendering model (a subset, plus tweaks, of the PostScript model), but this is used by application frameworks?there is no PostScript present in the Mac OS X window server. Apple chose to use this model for a variety of reasons, including the avoidance of high Adobe-imposed licensing fees for DPS, and more efficient support of legacy Carbon and Classic code; QuickDraw-based applications use bitmapped drawing exclusively. Adobe's copyright stipulations for the PDF standard are much less restrictive, granting conditional copyright permission to anyone to use the format in software applications, free of charge."

OS X does PDF at the core since the get-go (evolved from NeXT). Not sure why Adobe thought it could hassle Microsoft over the Office 2007 "Save as PDF".

krayzie said:

honestly its pdfs.. who cares who had it first...

Staff
Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

Guest said:

And last I checked, there are a dozen free PDF readers around. How can Adobe sue MS for including a PDF reader when they offer their own one free anyway?

Adobe could easily sue because "free" is NOT equal "legally redistributable"; however, the PDF format is an "open standard" these days. Microsoft is almost certainly using their own (or licensed) implementation, so I doubt there will be a lawsuit brewing.

The world has witnessed stranger things though... [link]

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

honestly its pdfs.. who cares who had it first...

That would be people whose self esteem is tied to what kind of product they own.

Det Det said:

"Modern Reader". What a surprising choice of name. What's gonna be the name of Windows "9"? Modern Windows?

fpsgamerJR62 said:

Why not just build that kind of functionality into Notepad ? And also the ability to read MS Office documents ? Doesn't Microsoft offer separate free viewers for its different office formats ?

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.