Best PDF Software: Ranked and Reviewed (2024)

Did you know that over 80% of all documents shared online are in PDF format? That’s right, Portable Document Format (PDF) files have become the go-to choice for sharing and storing information in our increasingly digital world. From business reports and legal documents to resumes and e-books, PDFs offer a universal format that preserves the original content, layout, and formatting across different devices and operating systems. With such a significant number of PDF files circulating online, it’s crucial to have the best PDF software that can handle editing, converting, and managing these files effectively.

In this article, I will introduce you to the top-rated PDF tools and guide you through the best PDF editor software, PDF converter, and PDF management tools available in the market. Whether you’re a student, professional, or business owner, finding the right PDF software can enhance your productivity and streamline your document workflows.

Key Takeaways:

  • PDFs account for over 80% of all documents shared online.
  • The best PDF software can improve your document editing, conversion, and management processes.
  • In this article, we will explore the top-rated PDF tools and their features.
  • From PDF editors to converters and management tools, there are options for every need and budget.
  • Choosing the right PDF software can enhance your productivity and streamline your document workflows.

Adobe Acrobat Pro – Best overall

Adobe Acrobat Pro is widely recognized as the best PDF editor in the market. With its comprehensive PDF editing features and rich set of tools, it offers unparalleled functionality for editing, creating, and sharing PDF files.

The easily navigable tabbed interface of Adobe Acrobat Pro ensures a seamless user experience. Whether you need to merge, split, or rearrange pages, the intuitive interface makes it a breeze to navigate through your documents. Its extensive set of editing tools allows you to manipulate text, images, and other elements within your PDF files.

One of the standout features of Adobe Acrobat Pro is its streamlined sharing capability. You can fill, sign, and send documents for signature without the need to print or scan them. This not only saves time but also reduces the use of paper, making it an eco-friendly choice. The ability to securely share and collaborate on documents across different devices and platforms adds to its convenience.

Despite its comprehensive feature set, Adobe Acrobat Pro may appear daunting for new users. However, a recent interface redesign has made it more user-friendly, ensuring that users can make the most of its powerful capabilities without feeling overwhelmed.

Although Adobe Acrobat Pro comes with a higher price tag compared to other PDF editors, it remains the industry standard for PDF editing. Its robust functionality, coupled with its stellar reputation, makes it an excellent choice for professionals and businesses looking for a top-notch PDF editing solution.

Foxit PDF Editor 13 – Best overall runner-up

In the realm of PDF editors, Foxit PDF Editor 13 stands as a strong contender for the top spot. While Adobe Acrobat Pro may hold the crown, Foxit PDF Editor 13 offers a compelling alternative with its impressive features and capabilities.

One of the standout features of Foxit PDF Editor 13 is its multi-platform support, making it accessible on various devices. Whether you’re working on a PC, Mac, or mobile device, Foxit PDF Editor 13 ensures a seamless experience across platforms.

Another notable advantage of Foxit PDF Editor 13 is its business-ready capabilities. It provides a robust set of features designed to meet the needs of businesses, such as document collaboration, security options, and advanced editing tools. This PDF editor is tailored for power users who require professional-grade functionality for their document management.

What sets Foxit PDF Editor 13 apart is its seamless integration with existing workflows. The Microsoft Office-style ribbon interface offers a familiar and intuitive user experience, streamlining tasks and minimizing the learning curve.

With Foxit PDF Editor 13, I found the perfect balance between usability and advanced functionality. Its multi-platform support and business-ready capabilities make it a top choice for professionals seeking a reliable PDF editor.

In summary, Foxit PDF Editor 13 is a compelling runner-up in the PDF editor market. Its multi-platform support, business-ready capabilities, and seamless integration make it a formidable alternative to Adobe Acrobat Pro.

Comparison:

Features Foxit PDF Editor 13 Adobe Acrobat Pro
Multi-platform support
Business-ready capabilities
Seamless integration
Advanced editing tools
Price $$ $$$

EaseUS PDF editor – Best budget option

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly PDF editor that doesn’t compromise on features, EaseUS PDF editor is the perfect choice. With its affordable pricing and full set of editing tools, it delivers everything you need to efficiently manage your PDF files.

What sets EaseUS PDF editor apart is its straightforward interface, designed to make the editing process simple and intuitive. You don’t have to be a tech expert to navigate the software and perform various editing tasks with ease.

Whether you need to edit text, images, or even add annotations, EaseUS PDF editor provides a comprehensive set of tools to meet your requirements. From basic tasks like rearranging pages to advanced features like OCR (Optical Character Recognition), it has you covered.

Not sure if EaseUS PDF editor is right for you? No problem! The software offers a fully functional free version that allows you to try it out before committing to a paid version. The free version includes all the editing tools you need, but with embedded watermarks.

With EaseUS PDF editor, you can efficiently manage your PDF files without breaking the bank. Don’t let its budget-friendly pricing fool you – it’s packed with features that rival more expensive options in the market.

“EaseUS PDF editor offers a full set of editing tools at an affordable price, making it the best budget option for managing your PDF files.”

Next, let’s take a closer look at PDF Candy, another top contender in the world of free PDF editors.

PDF Candy – Best free option

If you’re in search of a powerful yet free PDF editor, look no further than PDF Candy. This exceptional tool stands out among its counterparts by providing advanced features without requiring a paid subscription. With its impressive range of capabilities, PDF Candy empowers users to efficiently edit and manage their PDF files without spending a dime.

One of the standout features of PDF Candy is its scanning capabilities. With just a few clicks, you can transform physical documents or images into digital PDF files, allowing for easy editing and archiving. This feature is particularly useful when you want to digitize important documents or convert images into PDF format.

Additionally, PDF Candy offers multiple file conversion options, making it a versatile PDF editor. Whether you need to convert PDF files into Word, Excel, or other document formats, PDF Candy has got you covered. This feature comes in handy when you need to extract information from PDFs or repurpose content for different purposes.

But what really sets PDF Candy apart is its OCR (Optical Character Recognition) capability. With OCR, you can transform scanned documents or images into searchable and editable PDFs. This functionality is invaluable when it comes to working with scanned files that require further editing or extracting text for reference.

While PDF Candy is free to use, it does have some limitations. In the free version, users are limited to one PDF task per hour, and some advanced features are only available in the trial version. However, considering the extensive range of features PDF Candy offers, these limitations are relatively minor.

To summarize, PDF Candy is the best free PDF editor for users seeking advanced features and OCR capability without the need for a paid subscription. Its scanning capabilities, multiple file conversion options, and OCR functionality make it a standout choice among other free PDF editors.

Pros Cons
  • Advanced features without a paid subscription
  • Scanning capabilities for digitizing documents
  • Multiple file conversion options
  • OCR functionality for searchable and editable PDFs
  • Limitations in the free version
  • Advanced features only available in the trial version

PDF Expert – Best full-featured editor for Apple devices

When it comes to editing PDF files on Apple devices, PDF Expert stands out as the best full-featured editor available. With its comprehensive set of editing and annotation tools, it offers Mac, iPhone, and iPad users a seamless PDF editing experience.

PDF Expert’s editing features allow you to make precise changes to your PDF documents, whether it’s adjusting text, adding or removing images, or rearranging pages with ease. The annotation tools enable you to highlight important sections, add comments, and draw shapes effortlessly, making collaboration and feedback a breeze.

One of the key advantages of PDF Expert is its seamless synchronization across Mac and iOS devices. This means that you can start editing a PDF on your Mac and continue right where you left off on your iPhone or iPad. The sync feature ensures that your files are always up to date, no matter which device you’re using.

PDF Expert’s user-friendly interface makes it easy and intuitive to navigate and access all of its features. You don’t need to be a tech-savvy user to take full advantage of this powerful PDF editor.

Not only does PDF Expert excel in functionality, but it also offers a cost-effective pricing plan when compared to other top picks. This makes it an excellent choice for Apple users who want a top-notch PDF editing experience without breaking the bank.

Why Choose PDF Expert for Apple Devices

There are several reasons why PDF Expert is the best PDF editor for Apple devices:

  • Comprehensive editing and annotation tools that allow you to make precise changes and collaborate effectively.
  • Seamless synchronization across Mac and iOS devices, ensuring your documents are always up to date.
  • User-friendly interface that makes navigation and access to features effortless.
  • Cost-effective pricing plan that offers excellent value for money.

With PDF Expert, you can confidently edit and manage your PDF files on your Apple devices, knowing that you have a reliable and feature-rich PDF editor at your fingertips.

Features PDF Expert Competitor A Competitor B
Comprehensive editing tools
Annotation and collaboration features
Syncs across Mac and iOS
User-friendly interface
Cost-effective pricing

Apple Preview PDF editor – Best free option for Mac users

When it comes to PDF editing on Mac, there’s no need to search far and wide. Apple Preview, which comes pre-installed on macOS, is your go-to solution. Not only is it available for free, but it also offers a full set of PDF markup tools that cater to your basic editing needs.

With Apple Preview, you can confidently handle your PDF files with ease. It provides support for form filling, allowing you to conveniently fill out important documents. Additionally, you have the option to apply password protection and set file permissions, ensuring the security and privacy of your PDFs.

While Apple Preview may have limited native sharing options and is exclusive to Mac users, it still remains a solid choice for basic PDF editing tasks. Its straightforward interface and intuitive functionalities make it accessible and user-friendly.

“Apple Preview is a reliable and convenient tool for Mac users looking to edit PDFs without breaking the bank. With its full set of PDF markup tools, it provides the essential features needed for basic PDF editing tasks.”

Key Features:

  • Full set of PDF markup tools
  • Support for form filling
  • Password protection and file permissions

With Apple Preview, you have access to a robust set of PDF editing tools that come at no additional cost. It’s a valuable built-in application that allows Mac users to handle their PDF files efficiently and effectively.

Next, let’s explore another popular PDF editor for Mac, PDF Expert, which offers comprehensive editing and annotation tools specifically designed for Apple devices.

pdfFiller – Best web-based editor

Looking for the best web-based PDF editor? Look no further than pdfFiller. With its intuitive web-based interface and extensive set of features, pdfFiller is the top choice for users who prefer to edit and manage PDF files online.

pdfFiller offers a variety of powerful editing tools, allowing you to easily modify and update your PDF documents. Whether you need to add text, images, or annotations, pdfFiller has you covered. Its user-friendly interface makes it easy to navigate and access all of its editing features.

But pdfFiller doesn’t stop at just editing. It also offers robust security options to protect your sensitive data. You can add password protection, restrict access to certain users, and even digitally sign your documents to ensure their authenticity.

What sets pdfFiller apart from other web-based editors is its business-ready capabilities. Whether you need to collaborate on a document, collect electronic signatures, or automate your workflow, pdfFiller has the tools to help you streamline your business processes.

With pdfFiller, you can:

  • Edit, annotate, and fill out PDF forms
  • Protect your documents with advanced security options
  • Collaborate with others and collect electronic signatures
  • Automate your workflow with business-ready features

Whether you’re a student, professional, or business owner, pdfFiller has the features you need to handle your PDF documents efficiently. Its web-based interface means you can access your documents from anywhere, without the need for any software installations or updates.

Choose pdfFiller as your go-to web-based PDF editor and experience the convenience of editing and managing your PDF files online.

Top PDF editors for Windows

When it comes to editing, converting, and managing PDF files on Windows devices, there are several top PDF editors to choose from. These editors provide a wide range of features and functionalities to meet your specific needs. Whether you’re looking for the best overall editor or a budget-friendly option, there is a PDF editor available for you. Let’s take a look at three top PDF editors for Windows:

1. Adobe Acrobat Pro

Adobe Acrobat Pro is a well-known PDF editor that remains one of the industry standards. It offers a comprehensive set of features and functionalities for editing, creating, and sharing PDF files. With its intuitive interface and rich feature set, Adobe Acrobat Pro provides a seamless editing experience for Windows users.

2. Nitro PDF Pro

Nitro PDF Pro is another popular PDF editor for Windows that offers a wide range of features. It provides a user-friendly interface and robust editing tools, making it easy to edit, convert, and collaborate on PDF files. Nitro PDF Pro is known for its speed and efficiency in handling PDF documents.

3. EaseUS PDF editor

EaseUS PDF editor is a budget-friendly option for Windows users. It offers a full set of editing tools and functionalities without compromising on quality. With its straightforward interface and affordable pricing, EaseUS PDF editor is a great choice for users who are looking for a cost-effective PDF editor.

Whether you need advanced editing capabilities, quick and efficient document management, or a budget-friendly option, these top PDF editors for Windows have got you covered. Choose the one that suits your needs and start editing your PDF files with ease.

Top PDF editors for Mac

Mac users have a wide range of options when it comes to choosing a PDF editor. Whether you need advanced features or a simple and user-friendly interface, there are top PDF editors available for all your needs. In this section, I will discuss three of the best PDF editors for Mac: Adobe Acrobat Pro, PDF Expert, and Apple Preview PDF editor.

Adobe Acrobat Pro

Adobe Acrobat Pro is a powerful PDF editor that offers a comprehensive set of features. With Adobe Acrobat Pro, you can easily edit, annotate, and manage your PDF files. It comes with a wide range of tools and functionalities, including advanced editing options and seamless integration with other Adobe products. Whether you’re a professional or a casual user, Adobe Acrobat Pro provides all the tools you need to work with PDF files on your Mac.

PDF Expert

PDF Expert is a full-featured PDF editor designed specifically for Apple devices. It offers a clean and intuitive interface, making it easy to navigate and use. With PDF Expert, you can edit text, add annotations, fill out forms, and even sign documents. It also supports seamless syncing across Mac and iOS devices, allowing you to access your PDF files from anywhere. If you’re looking for a powerful PDF editor that is optimized for Apple devices, PDF Expert is an excellent choice.

Apple Preview PDF Editor

Apple Preview is a built-in PDF editor on Mac that provides a range of basic editing and annotation tools. While it may not have all the advanced features of Adobe Acrobat Pro or PDF Expert, Apple Preview offers a simple and straightforward interface for everyday PDF tasks. With Apple Preview, you can easily view, annotate, and make minor edits to your PDF files. It’s a convenient option for Mac users who need to work with PDF files without the need for extensive editing capabilities.

When it comes to PDF editing on Mac, these three editors stand out for their unique features and functionalities. Whether you need a full-featured editor like Adobe Acrobat Pro, a dedicated Apple device editor like PDF Expert, or a basic built-in editor like Apple Preview, there is a PDF editor available for your Mac.

Top PDF editors for mobile

Mobile users can also benefit from PDF editors designed specifically for their devices. Adobe Acrobat Pro, PDF Expert, and pdfFiller offer mobile versions that provide a range of features for editing, annotating, and sharing PDF files on smartphones and tablets. Whether you’re using an iOS or Android device, there is a PDF editor available for your mobile needs.

Top online PDF editors

Online PDF editors are a convenient and accessible way for users to edit, convert, and manage their PDF files directly from their web browsers. Whether you need to make quick changes to a document or collaborate with others on a shared file, these online tools offer the flexibility you need. In this section, I will introduce you to three of the top online PDF editors: PDF Candy, pdfFiller, and PDFescape.

PDF Candy

PDF Candy is a popular online PDF editor that provides a wide range of features to help you edit your PDF files easily. With PDF Candy, you can merge PDFs, split them into individual pages, convert files to different formats, and even add password protection. Its user-friendly interface makes it simple to navigate and use, even for beginners. Whether you’re a student, professional, or small business owner, PDF Candy has the tools you need to efficiently manage your PDF documents.

pdfFiller

pdfFiller is an excellent online PDF editor that offers a comprehensive set of features for editing, signing, and sharing PDF files. With pdfFiller, you can fill out forms, add text and images, insert digital signatures, and collaborate with others in real-time. Its intuitive web-based interface ensures a smooth editing experience, allowing you to make changes to your documents quickly and easily. Whether you’re working on contracts, invoices, or other important documents, pdfFiller provides the tools you need to streamline your workflow.

PDFescape

PDFescape is a reliable online PDF editor that offers both a free and a premium version. With PDFescape, you can edit text and images, add links and annotations, and even create new PDF files from scratch. Its user-friendly interface and straightforward editing tools make it a popular choice among users who need to make simple edits to their PDF documents. Whether you’re a student, teacher, or business professional, PDFescape has the features you need to effectively manage your PDF files.

These top online PDF editors provide a range of features and functionalities to cater to different user needs. From basic editing to advanced document management, these tools offer the flexibility and convenience that users require. Whether you prefer a free option like PDFescape or a feature-rich editor like pdfFiller, you can trust these online tools to help you work with PDF files efficiently.

Online PDF Editor Features
PDF Candy Merge, split, convert files
Add password protection
pdfFiller Edit, sign, and share PDFs
Fill out forms
Collaborate in real-time
PDFescape Edit text and images
Add links and annotations
Create new PDF files

Whether you’re a student, professional, or business owner, these top online PDF editors provide the features you need to efficiently manage your PDF documents. Choose the one that best suits your requirements and start editing your PDF files with ease.

How to choose the right PDF editor

When it comes to choosing the right PDF editor, there are several important factors to consider and compare. By evaluating these factors, you can ensure that the PDF editor you select meets your specific needs and preferences. Here’s a breakdown of the key considerations:

  1. Features and Functionalities: Assess the specific features and functionalities you require in a PDF editor. Consider whether you need advanced editing tools, form filling capabilities, OCR (optical character recognition), or collaboration features. Make a list of essential features to guide your decision-making process.
  2. User Interface and Ease of Use: An intuitive user interface and ease of use are crucial for a smooth experience with your PDF editor. Look for tools that have a user-friendly design, offer easy navigation, and provide a seamless editing process. Check for demo versions or free trials to gauge the user experience firsthand.
  3. Compatibility: Ensure that the PDF editor you choose is compatible with your devices and operating system. Whether you use Windows, Mac, or mobile devices, verify that the editor supports your preferred platform.
  4. Pricing Plans: Consider the pricing plans and subscription options offered by different PDF editors. Compare the cost-effectiveness of each option based on your requirements. Some PDF editors offer free versions with limited functionalities, while others have tiered pricing plans with additional features for premium subscribers.

By carefully evaluating these factors and conducting a feature comparison, you can make an informed decision when selecting the right PDF editor for your needs. Remember to prioritize your specific requirements and preferences to find a PDF editor that aligns perfectly with your workflow.

Factors to Consider Feature Comparison Pricing Plans
Features and Functionalities Compare the available features Evaluate the pricing options
User Interface and Ease of Use Assess the user experience Consider free versions and premium plans
Compatibility Check device and OS compatibility Compare pricing tiers
Pricing Plans Compare costs and value for money Choose the best plan for your budget

With these considerations in mind, take the time to research and compare different PDF editors to find the one that best suits your needs. Remember, choosing the right PDF editor can greatly enhance your productivity and streamline your document management workflows.

Key Takeaways:

When choosing the right PDF editor:

  • Consider the specific features you require
  • Evaluate the user interface and ease of use
  • Verify compatibility with your devices
  • Compare pricing plans for the best value

Choosing the right PDF editor

Conclusion

In conclusion, when it comes to choosing the best PDF software, it all comes down to your specific needs and preferences. After thoroughly reviewing and ranking the options, I have identified several top contenders in different categories.

For those looking for a robust and feature-packed PDF editor, Adobe Acrobat Pro is the industry standard. It offers comprehensive editing tools, streamlined sharing options, and a rich feature set that caters to professionals and power users.

If you’re on a budget but still need a reliable PDF editor, EaseUS PDF editor is a great choice. It provides all the essential editing tools without any unnecessary complexities, making it easy to use and cost-effective.

Mac users have some excellent options, including PDF Expert and Apple Preview. PDF Expert is a full-featured editor specifically designed for Apple devices, offering an intuitive interface and comprehensive editing and annotation tools. On the other hand, Apple Preview, which comes pre-installed on macOS, provides a solid set of PDF markup tools for basic editing tasks.

For those who prefer web-based editing, pdfFiller is a top choice. Its intuitive web-based interface and business-ready capabilities make it ideal for users who need to edit and manage PDF files on the go.

In summary, consider the features, compatibility, and pricing plans of each PDF software option to find the one that best fits your requirements. Whether you’re an industry professional, a budget-conscious user, a Mac enthusiast, or in need of web-based editing, there is a PDF software option for you.

FAQ

What is the best PDF software?

There are several options to consider when it comes to the best PDF software. Adobe Acrobat Pro, Foxit PDF Editor 13, and EaseUS PDF editor are among the top choices based on their features and functionality.

What is Adobe Acrobat Pro?

Adobe Acrobat Pro is widely regarded as the best PDF editor in the market. It offers a comprehensive set of features for editing, creating, and sharing PDF files, making it the industry standard.

What is Foxit PDF Editor 13?

Foxit PDF Editor 13 is a strong contender for the best PDF editor. It offers multi-platform support and provides a robust set of features, making it an excellent alternative to Adobe Acrobat Pro.

What is EaseUS PDF editor?

EaseUS PDF editor offers all the essential tools for managing PDF files at an affordable price. It provides a full set of editing tools without any elaborate features, making it a budget-friendly option.

What is PDF Candy?

PDF Candy is a free PDF editor that offers advanced features without the need for a paid subscription. It includes scanning capabilities, multiple file conversion options, and OCR functionality.

What is PDF Expert?

PDF Expert is an excellent PDF editor specifically designed for Apple devices. It offers a comprehensive set of editing and annotation tools, making it a top choice for Mac, iPhone, and iPad users.

What is Apple Preview PDF editor?

Apple Preview PDF editor is a pre-installed PDF editor on macOS that provides a full set of PDF markup tools, including form filling, password protection, and file permissions.

What is pdfFiller?

pdfFiller is a web-based PDF editor that offers a variety of features, including editing, security options, and business-ready capabilities. It has an intuitive interface and is a top choice for web-based editing.

What are the top PDF editors for Windows?

The top PDF editors for Windows include Adobe Acrobat Pro, Nitro PDF Pro, and EaseUS PDF editor. These editors provide a wide range of features for editing, converting, and managing PDF files on Windows devices.

What are the top PDF editors for Mac?

The top PDF editors for Mac include Adobe Acrobat Pro, PDF Expert, and Apple Preview PDF editor. These editors offer a range of features for editing and managing PDF files on Mac devices.

What are the top PDF editors for mobile?

The top PDF editors for mobile include Adobe Acrobat Pro, PDF Expert, and pdfFiller. These editors provide features for editing, annotating, and sharing PDF files on smartphones and tablets.

What are the top online PDF editors?

The top online PDF editors include PDF Candy, pdfFiller, and PDFescape. These editors offer a variety of features for editing PDF files directly from web browsers, providing convenience and accessibility.

How do I choose the right PDF editor?

When choosing the right PDF editor, consider factors such as specific features and functionalities required, user interface and ease of use, device compatibility, and pricing plans. Compare different PDF editors based on these factors to find the one that suits your needs.

Is there a conclusion to this article?

Yes, the conclusion of this article provides a summary of the best PDF software options and highlights the importance of considering individual needs and preferences when choosing a PDF editor.

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