Adobe® Experience Reader Extensions

Reader extend PDF documents | Facilitate forms data collection | Implement barcode creation workflows

Reader Extensions and Forms Processing

Collecting and processing document and form data can be challenging, especially when one or more parties are participating remotely, and also when processing large quantities of documents. To streamline this process, we’re offering a new solution – Adobe Experience Reader Extensions (AERE). AERE is a tool that allows you to automate and extend forms and document processing through Adobe Reader. This means that you can choose which functionality you want included in your documents or forms (commenting, digital signatures, barcodes, etc.), and AERE allows you to enable and offer these extensions to specific users through the free Adobe Reader application.

This tool leverages core functions within Adobe LiveCycle, and can help reduce errors, processing time, and cost when collaborating on projects, while increasing security, accuracy, and compliance.


Try the Free Reader-Extension Demo

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Note that this demo currently supports AcroForms. If you would like to test Adobe Experience Reader Extensions on XFAforms, please contact us.

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After Reader-extending your PDF form, you'll have the following options available:

  • Basic Form Fill-In
  • Import and Export Form Data
  • Database and Web Service Connectivity
  • Add, Delete, and Change Form Fields
  • Create Pages From Templates
  • Update 2D Barcodes
  • Digital Signatures
  • Online Commenting
  • Embedded File Attachments

View our Sample Reader-Extended PDF

After downloading this PDF and opening it in Adobe Reader, you'll be able to input your own information into each field. This Reader-extended PDF automatically creates a customized barcode in real-time that captures all of your data for easy processing. You have the option to print the completed PDF form, and can also easily scan the rendered barcode containing all of the completed form information.


Fillable Forms & Barcodes

Fillable forms allow a user to input their specific data into prepopulated PDF form fields digitally and thereafter submit the completed information automatically. Here are a few examples of fillable form fields that users can interact with:

  • Check Boxes
  • Drop Down / List Box
  • Radio Buttons
  • Free Form Text Fields

Utilizing fillable form fields on your PDF documents helps to minimize manual human entry, thereby reducing errors and overall costs. Combining fillable form fields and integrating barcode capabilities in your PDF forms will add to further optimization of both your forms data collection and document processing workflows.

Barcodes and QR codes can be used to reduce manual data entry by automating data processing. Barcodes can help reconstruct form entries into a scannable pattern, which can be decoded into usable data.

 PDFs support PDF417, QR codes, and Data Matrix codes.

  • PDF417 is a stacked linear barcode used in transport, ID cards, and inventory management, often known as a linear barcode.
  • QR Codes, also known as Quick Response Codes, can be used for anything and everything. They're used extensively in marketing, event management, and inventory applications.
  • Data Matrix codes are designed to reduce decoding errors. They can be read even when they're up to 40% damaged.

The document creator needs to collect/capture user form input data and extract that data electronically into their specific systems for processing.

  1. Author creates a PDF that contains multiple form input fields
  2. Author will then add a barcode field to the forms and configure it to capture filled data
  3. Optional: Enable the PDF forms for Adobe Reader users, so that they can save their own filled forms & barcode fields
  4. Author sends out PDF to chosen users
  5. Users then fill out forms and print/deliver or submit electronically
  6. Author decodes barcode data

Adobe® Reader® has barcode and form processing capabilities but these features are locked and not accessible to users. With Adobe Experience Reader Extensions (AERE) from Datalogics, authors/creators of PDF documents will be able to unlock these features (including form data capture, data export and barcode generation) to automate and streamline form data collection activities with the Adobe Reader product. Without usage rights activated these features cannot be enabled or accessed.

Document Usage Rights

Usage rights refer to a set of features that are available to users in Adobe® Acrobat®, but not Adobe Reader. These features include file attachments, digital signatures, commenting, data import/export, form-submission, database & web service capability, and barcodes.

Adobe Experience Reader Extensions is required to enable usage rights for Adobe Reader 9 (or earlier). Adobe® LiveCycle® can also enable usage rights, but is no longer available to end users.

Adobe LiveCycle & AERE

Adobe LiveCycle Reader Extensions is a module within the LiveCycle Java stack that turns on functionality within the Adobe Reader application. A user would use LiveCycle Reader Extensions to enable features on a per-document basis.

Adobe Experience Reader Extensions uses a command line interface, and is built to be used programmatically. AERE is designed to be an affordable standalone solution that does not require a java stack installed. With AERE, users can quickly set it up as a local installation, or can also purchase it as a service and it is hosted on our FTP servers.

Interested in Adobe Experience Reader Extensions?


If you're looking for an SDK with a native Java API, we've got you covered.