The left-side Nav Panel (pages, bookmarks, etc.) will only display in expanded mode if a PDF document sets it to show in the initial view preferences. By default it will always show in icon (collapsed) mode - though the user can right-click the Panel to hide it completely if they so wish, the choice isn't permanent.
I don't agree that "A lot of Reader users are frustrated with this panel" - where's your evidence of that? Adobe's UI design is based on very extensive user feedback and usage monitoring, and even on a small form-factor device the icon strip serves a vital role to allow quick access to the thumbnails, to indicate a document is secured or standards-compliant, and so forth. Given the user base for Adobe Reader, hiding all that information by default wouldn't be at all sensible.
I never suggested hiding the panel by default, I just propose making the 'hide navigation panel' option permanent regardless of closing - opening documents, that's all, user will be able to bring it back any time by right clicking etc.
And I'm talking about the collapsed panel, with all that gray unused space, in my opinion it should be more discreet, for example like the navigation panel (appearing - dissappearing or collapsing).
I can't set forth evidence of the "frustration" of people, other than my personal experience with my colleagues, with a few quick searches on google and this forum I found several relative discussions. In addition, the replies on this thread can show the amount of people who agree/disagree and that's why I prompt for replies.
The user interface is fixed in each product version. If you wish to send Adobe a feature request, you should use the official form. Requests sent via that form are all read, but there's no guarantee of action unless it's something with significant support across the user base.
This is a user-to-user forum. Users are of course free to debate any relevant topics within the rules, but the ACPs/ACCs/employees who respond do so to help users with questions about current and past versions of Adobe's products, and cannot reveal future plans until they are officially announced.
Thank you for your replies, though I'd like to see some user opinions and that is the purpose of this thread, other than a request to adobe employees.
I am also frustrated that there is no option to permanently hide the navigation panel.
I believe that adobe earns 1 cent every time you click to hide the panel