PDF documents are becoming more and more popular. They are now widely used at school, at work, in daily activities and in many other contexts. If you have come across this article, however, it seems clear to me that you have not yet found aapp to read PDF that you like it. Quite right? Well, if that's really the case, I have to give you some good news: today I will introduce you to some applications that will allow you to read PDFs without any difficulty.
Some of the apps listed below are 100% free and are compatible with most devices currently on the market, while others are paid and offer some advanced features. Whether you have an Android smartphone or tablet, an iPhone or an iPad or a Windows device, you can be sure that you will find the application to open files in PDF format that is right for you.
Are you ready to start? Well, I would say that you can make yourself comfortable and read the next paragraphs trying, if possible, all the applications that I will suggest: in this way you will be able to make a targeted choice and easily identify which is the most suitable app for you. Good reading and good fun, or good work, depending on your point of view!
Google PDF Viewer (Android)
If you have an Android device available, the first solution I recommend you try is the Google PDF Viewer, an app that should already be included "as standard" on your smartphone or tablet. Can't find it in the main menu of your device? Don't worry, the Google PDF Viewer does not have a real start icon: it opens automatically only when the user presses on any PDF file coming from downloads or any other app.
As easily understood, the Google PDF Viewer provides only the basic functions offered by any other PDF file reader: view files, copy notes, print, search in text etc. It does not have editing functions or other advanced features, for those you have to turn to other solutions like the ones that I will propose to you in a while. But now let's ban the chatter and see how the app works!
After starting the Google PDF Viewer by opening any document, you can immediately notice how simple the application interface is. At the top of the screen you can see the name of the PDF file that has been opened and two icons: that of of the magnifying glass which allows you to search within the text and the symbol (...), which instead allows you to access the settings.
To search for a word in the document you have opened, tap onicon of the lens of ingrandimento and type, in the field Find…, the term or phrase you want to search for. As you can see, the Google PDF Viewer highlights the various occurrences of the search term in yellow and therefore allows you to identify them all easily.
To access the app settings, however, tap on the symbol (...) and, in the menu that appears, presses on one of the available options: Send file ... to share the file with another user; Open with… to open the file with a third party app; Download to download the file to the device; Print to print a hard copy of the PDF or Report a problem if you want to inform the Google team of any problems encountered while using the application.
Do you have an Apple device available? In this case, first download any other app to read PDF, you would do well to seriously consider using iBooks: the PDF and e-book reader that is installed on all “made in Cupertino” devices.
Thanks to iBooks, it is possible to read PDF files very easily, whether they come from the Internet, from a cloud storage service (iCloud Drive, Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.), from an e-mail attachment etc. whether they are loaded locally on the device memory. If you remember correctly, I have already told you about iBooks and transferring PDFs from computer to iPhone in my guide on how to save PDF to iPhone. Another very important peculiarity of iBooks concerns its perfect integration with iCloud: by saving a PDF file in this app, you will find it automatically synchronized on all the devices associated with your Apple ID account (iPhone, iPad or Mac).
Opening a PDF with iBooks is very simple: locate the PDF file you want to view, select it, tap on theshare icon (the square with the arrow inside) and presses the icon of iBooks present in the menu that opens. If you view a PDF from Safari, you can recall iBooks simply downloaded by pressing the command Open in "iBooks" which is displayed at the top right of the browser screen.
After opening the PDF document in iBooks, you can read the file freely and you can use all the functions included in the app. Pigia then onarrow icon (top left) to send the file via e-mail and / or to print it, tap onicon of the lens of ingrandimento to search for words in the PDF or press onbookmark icon to remind you of the exact point from which to resume reading. Easier than that?
Adobe Acrobat Reader (Android/iOS/Windows/macOS)
Adobe Acrobat Reader is one of the most famous and popular PDF file readers. It is available as PC software and as a free application for smartphones and tablets, thanks to which you can open PDF files, insert annotations, highlights, freehand notes, fill in forms and much more. Also noteworthy is its perfect integration with Dropbox, which allows you to connect more quickly to files saved on the well-known cloud storage platform.
After installing Acrobat Reader on your Android, iOS or Windows device, open the app by tapping the button apri or by pressing on its icon located on the Home screen of your device. Pigia then onred folder icon (if you use Android) or on the drop-down menu at the top (if you use iOS) to open the PDF files saved on your device and, in the screen that opens, select the path and name of the document you want to view.
With PDF open, you can read it freely on your device, or you can press the icon (...) to access some Acrobat Reader settings: Salva in Document Cloud to save the file on the service offered by Adobe, Print to print the PDF, Settings to choose some file display options e Help to ask the Adobe team for assistance.
By tapping ontwo leaves icon (bottom left) you can decide which display option to activate: Continue to view the scrolling pages, Single page to view scrolling pages, Reading mode to increase the font size and make the document more readable e Night mode so as not to strain your eyes when reading in low light conditions.
To enter notes or to highlight the text, instead, tap on thepen and speech bubble icon and, in the menu that appears below, tap on one of the available options to add a note, highlight the text or draw freehand on the document itself. Whenever you add a note to the document, remember to press on checkmark or on the option Save to save the changes you made to the PDF.
Prestige EReader (Android)
Another great one app to read PDF è eReader Prestigio, a real e-book reader that allows you to read books and files in multiple formats: epub, epub3, fb2, fb2.zip, mobi, pdf, html, doc, rtf and txt. It also supports ebooks protected by Adobe DRM system.
The eReader Prestigio interface is quite clean, but this does not make the app "poor" in functionality, quite the contrary. To discover all the features of the application, download it, start it and create your account within it by tapping the button Subscribe. If you are not interested in the possibility of downloading free books, buying new books, etc. you can also skip the registration and directly access the main screen of eReader Prestigio by tapping on the appropriate option.
As soon as you arrive on the eReader Prestigio home screen, press the icon ≡ located at the top left to access the settings. In the menu that opens, tap on the option Fillet and choose the folder where your PDFs are stored. Once you have found the file you want to read, open it by tapping on it and follow the instructions you see on the screen to make the most of the app.
As you can see, the Prestigio eReader interface favors reading by the user, eliminating any external distraction. Not surprisingly, when you open a PDF, you do not see anything else on the screen: all the settings are automatically hidden and must be recalled intentionally by tapping the center of the "sheet".
There are various functions available: the upper slider allows you to increase or decrease the brightness; L'bookmark icon allows you to add a new bookmark to the document; L'icona dell'ingranaggio allows you to access the settings to change the theme and reading mode; L'icon of the lens of ingrandimento allows you to search for a word within the text, while the lower slider allows you to fast forward through the pages of the PDF.
Foxit PDF (Android/iOS/Windows)
Among the best app to read PDF on smartphones and tablets it should also be mentioned Foxit PDF, a free solution available on both Android and iOS and Windows which, in addition to including the basic features offered by any PDF file reader, also provides the user with some advanced features, such as the protection of PDF files with certificates, protecting company data with Microsoft Intune, signing PDF documents with digital certificates, creating blank PDF files, merging multiple PDF files into a new file, etc. accessible through some in-app purchases starting at € 0,89.
After downloading Foxit PDF on your device, open the application and, on the home screen, press the green button starts. Automatically, all PDFs saved on your device will be loaded into the app.
To open one of the uploaded files, tap on it and then press one of the available options to change the display settings and other parameters: List to view the list of available annotations, attachments and bookmarks; View to change the characteristics of the sheet and the way pages are scrolled; Comment to insert notes and highlights within the text e Company to put your signature on the document.
At the top of the sheet, however, you can press on theicon of the lens of ingrandimento to search for a specific word within the text and you can also insert a bookmark by tapping on thebookmark icon located at the top.
PDF Expert 6 by Readdle (iOS/macOS)
If you have an Apple device, you have the opportunity to try one of the best PDF file readers on the market: PDF Expert 6 by Readdle, an app available for both iOS and macOS able not only to read files in PDF format (as well as in many other formats: zip, doc, etc.), but also to synchronize them online through the main cloud storage and modify its content (through in-app purchases).
The mobile version of PDF Expert for iOS devices costs 10,99 euros, while the desktop version can be purchased for 64,99 euros. I already anticipate that in the next paragraphs we will focus mainly on the features of the mobile version of the app.
After installing PDF Expert 6, open the application and use its convenient interface to select the document you want to view. In the left tab you can search for files by location and by date of consultation (On my iPhone / iPad, In the Cloud, Recent), while in the right tab you can find the preview of each file. To open a PDF, just choose its path from left tab (Eg. Documents o dropbox) and select its preview from right tab.
Once the PDF is displayed, you will be pleasantly surprised by the PDF Expert interface which is both "clean" and feature rich. By tapping the button Write down (the pencil icon located at the top), you can view a temporary menu on the left that allows you to use various tools to highlight text, insert shapes, underline text, insert comments, stamps, etc. By tapping the button Modification (the icon T|), instead, you can edit the text in the PDF. As I have already mentioned to you, to access this feature it is necessary to make an in-app purchase of 10,99 euros.
If you want to change the reading optionspigia sull'icona aA and, in the menu that appears, choose one of the available options: Day to view the blank sheet; Night to optimize content viewing in low light conditions; Seppia to “yellow” the sheet e Horizontal scrolling o Vertical Scrolling to change the way pages scroll.
To share a file or to print a copy, tap the button (...) located at the top right and, in the box that appears, tap on one of the available options: E-mail to send the PDF by e-mail; Save a Copy to export a copy to a cloud storage service; Export to iCloud Drive to save it in Apple's cloud service; Set password to protect the PDF with a secure password; Print to print a hard copy or To share to share it with your co-workers or other users.
Other Apps to Read PDFs
Le applications to read PDF that I have indicated in the previous paragraphs are the best you can install on your mobile device. However, there are also other alternatives that you should consider, which is why I urge you to read the next few paragraphs very carefully.
- ES File Explorer (Android) - one of the best free file managers for Android systems. It allows you to view, copy, move and manage any type of file in a very simple way. You can imagine it as a sort of File Explorer or Finder for Android, with an integrated PDF viewer and with the possibility of calling up external PDF viewers in a few taps.
- iCloud Drive (iOS) - the official application of Apple's cloud storage platform. It is a great solution to open and read PDFs quickly and easily and, above all, to synchronize files saved on iCloud with all your devices. For more information on iCloud services, read the in-depth information on how to use iCloud that I have prepared especially for you.
- Exodus PDF (Android / iOS / Windows) - one of the best free PDF file readers for mobile devices. It also offers some editing features that can be very handy (highlighter, underline, freehand drawing, etc.) and supports synchronization of documents with the main cloud storage services.
- Documents 6 by Readdle (iOS) - those looking for a complete file manager for their iPhone and iPad, cannot fail to try this free application made available by Readdle, the creators of the PDF Expert app I told you about earlier. Documents 6 is able to open any file, including PDFs, and allows you to insert your own annotations in a few taps.
- Universal Book Reader (Android) - Anyone who reads books in PDF or e-Pub format should definitely try this e-book reader on their device. Universal Book Reader provides the user with a powerful converter thanks to which it is possible to export over 50 different file formats in PDF or ePub format (mobi, txt, csv, xlsx, docx, odt, pub, WPS, PSD and many others yet).
- Sumatra PDF (Windows) - this is a great free solution to try on your PC. Sumatra PDF is a program characterized by a very simple and "clean" interface that makes this program very "light", ideal for those who have a particularly slow and / or old computer.
- PDF-XChange Editor (Windows) - this program allows you to view multiple PDF files simultaneously on your PC via a convenient tabbed interface. It can be downloaded in both free and paid versions (the Plus version of the program costs $ 54,50, while the Pro version costs $ 43,50). Those who purchase the paid versions can access advanced features, including the ability to edit text in PDFs.