Work with forms

Acrobat Reader’s form-related features are richer than ever with support for both traditional Acroforms and Fill & Sign forms.

Form type vs. features

There are two types of forms–Acroforms and Fill & Sign forms–and each has a slightly different set of features.

  • Acroforms (traditional forms authored in Acrobat) contain form fields in which you can directly enter data, check boxes, and so on. These can be filled in on any platform and edited in Acrobat. You cannot edit or remove Acroform form fields on a mobile device.
  • Fill & Sign forms are simple forms you can create on any platform, including mobile devices. Fill & Sign form fields are similar to annotations: you can select a form element from the form toolbar and tap anywhere on the PDF to place it. Acrobat also supports adding and editing Fill & Sign form fields. Note that you cannot add Fill & Sign fields to an Acroform.

Acroform features

Filling out a form

Acroforms already contain form fields. You cannot add or remove form fields from an Acroform. To fill out a form, simply tap a form field.

image

Tabbing through fields

To navigate through fields:

  1. Select Previous or Next.
  2. Enter data, and tap outside the field to save the field data.

Resetting form fields

To clear a field:

  1. Select any field.
  2. Tap Reset.
  3. When asked to confirm the reset, tap Cancel or Reset.

Bluetooth keyboard navigation

To help you use all your devices and peripherals and speed up your use of forms, Acrobat Reader supports Bluetooth keyboard navigation in forms.

JavaScript API support

Acrobat Reader supports the use of JavaScript for form field calculation and validation as well as formatting. For details, see the Mobile API Reference at https://www.adobe.com/devnet-docs/acrobatetk/tools/Mobile/index.html.

Fill & Sign features

Setting up your profile

By default, the app uses your in-app profile to suggest words when filling in form fields. As you type, matching profile entries appear in the popup associated with the keyboard. This feature saves time, especially on a mobile device. To configure your profile:

  1. Tap image > User Profile.

  2. Fill in any field.

  3. Tap Done.

    image

Automatic form fill-in

By default, the app uses your form fill-in history and user profile to suggest words in subsequent forms. This feature saves time, especially on a mobile device. Sources for suggestions include the following:

  • Your device profile: Profile data appears in the pop-up associated with the keyboard.
  • Data from saved forms: If the first two letters match data you’ve entered in past (and saved) forms, suggestions are populated from that usage history.
  • Date formats: Typing the first letter or any number in the current date suggests the following date formats: 8/06/2018; Aug 6, 2018; August 6, 2018.

To disable this feature:

  1. Tap image > Preferences.

  2. Disable Suggest words or phrases when filling forms.

  3. Tap Done.

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Clearing form data history

You usage history is saved from completed forms. This allows the app to make suggestions as you type in form fields. To clear your suggestion history, tap Clear Suggestions > Clear All > Done.

Creating and editing a form

You can easily turn almost any PDF into a form and either send it to others or fill it out yourself. Keep in mind some documents cannot use Fill & Sign features, including Acroforms and those PDFs which are signed or security protected.

To create a form in an open document:

  1. Tap image > image to show the Fill & Sign toolbar.

    image

  2. Select a form tool; for example, a text field or checkbox.

  3. Enter data. By default, the app suggests entries for text fields.

When you place a form element, a context menu provides options for changing the font size, deleting the element, and so on.

image

NOTE

You can copy text from your clipboard to text fields.

Signing forms

Signing is a simple process, especially if you’ve already created your signature. Simply tap image and place your signature.

NOTE

Signed documents are locked and cannot be edited! Undo actions are not possible once the document is saved.

Pasting text into text fields

When you copy text to your device clipboard, you can paste that text into a text field by simply long pressing the field and tapping Paste.

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Undo and redo

As you fill in a form, you can undo and redo any action (except signing). Simply tap image or image in the upper right menu or above the keyboard (if it is visible).

image

Deleting form fields

To removed a field:

  1. Tap any field.
  2. Tap Reset.
  3. When asked to confirm the reset, tap Cancel or Reset.

Forms FAQs

Does Acrobat Reader support XFA forms?

No. Acrobat Reader cannot open dynamic or static XFA forms created with LiveCycle Designer.

Is there any LiveCycle integration?

Acrobat Reader supports files secured by password security via Adobe LiveCycle Rights Management Server as well as document revocation. For details, see the Mobile Enterprise Guide at https://www.adobe.com/go/readermobileetk.

Why does the form I completed on my device appear blank elsewhere?

There are several possible reasons:

  • Filling in XFA forms (sometimes created with LiveCycle Designer) is not supported.
  • Many non-Adobe PDF viewers DO NOT SUPPORT viewing form data. These include iBooks, the built-in PDF Preview in iPad Mail, and other apps (like Dropbox).

Why don’t I see the form element tools?

You have opened an Acroform or a signed form. You cannot add form fields to those types of files.

Why doesn’t my profile data auto fill in the form?

You are likely looking at an Acroform rather than a Fill & Sign form. Profile data is only available with Fill & Sign.

Why can’t I edit my form?

Signed forms are locked.

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