best pdf reader for iphone

The Best PDF Readers for iPhone

Reading PDF from your iPhone can be challenging if you don’t know which app to use, here is the best PDF reader for iPhone.


  • Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • GoodReader
  • Foxit MobilePDF
  • Readdle Documents
  • iBooks
  • PDF Pro 3
  • PDFelement
  • PDF Reader
  • Xodo PDF Pro
  • PDF Expert

It can be challenging to read a PDF with an iPhone or iPad app. PDF (Portable Document Format) is one of the most used formats for ebooks, documents, receipts, academic articles, and even in the business world, it is preferred to other formats.

The reason is apparent: the PDF retains its original formatting wherever you view it and prints precisely as it appears on display.

The name “portable” in the type of file format does not imply that it is straightforward to read it in portability with our iPhone or our iPad (and that is not what the name indicates).

The problem arises from our needs: we have to take annotations, delete pages, set bookmarks and extricate ourselves from the multitude of apps dedicated to PDFs to find our ideal software can be a problem.

Top 10 PDF Readers for iPhone and iPad

We will see the iPhone PDF reader available on the App Store in this guide, mainly in the free version. We will include pricing for paid versions should you need additional functionality.

1. Adobe Acrobat Reader

  • Features: Search text, drawings, highlighter, PDF signature.

Acrobat Reader is a popular and well-known PDF reader available on any platform. The app on iOS has a clean and straightforward interface.

It is possible to add comments to PDF files via notes and use drawing tools. There is a highlighter to underline parts of the text with our fingers.

With an in-app purchase, we can unlock the ability to convert PDF to other formats (Word, Excel, Powerpoint) and merge multiple PDF files into a single file.

2. GoodReader

  • Features: annotations, search, signature, folder and cloud organizer, password protection, Wi-Fi transfer.

GoodReader is an iPhone PDF reader mainly known to those who are digital book readers. It has existed for more or less ten years and is continuously improved with functionality and design in step with the times.

It can be used to search for new books and read reviews. It also allows you to open video and audio files and send a PDF via email—particularly suitable for those who use OneDrive, Office 365, or those who need to password-protect PDFs.

3. Foxit MobilePDF

  • Features: annotations, audio and video support in PDFs

Another complete iPhone PDF reader with which you can read, annotate and write PDFs. Like the computer application of the same name, this mobile is also very light and fast.

Optimizing the space occupied by PDF files, merging several PDFs, scanning documents in PDF format, and signing are available with the paid version.

4. Readdle Documents

  • Features: search, annotations, document manager.

It is not simply an iPhone PDF reader but a single App to organize all the files on our iPhone / iPad. Documents import files from your computer, from the best clouds, or downloaded from the web.

It can be used as a music player and video player and is highly recommended if, in addition to reading PDFs on iPhone, we usually organize files of any other type. It is entirely free.

5. iBooks

  • Features: purchase of books, annotations, iTunes synchronization.

How not to mention Apple’s native PDF app? It received a makeover with the iOS 12 and is used for reading books and, above all, for purchasing the latter from the online store.

If we have multiple Apple devices, it is beneficial to synchronize bookmarks and PDF documents via iCloud; in other words, use when you have a complete Apple ecosystem. It doesn’t do much else, but it’s fast and, above all, it is a free iPhone PDF reader.

6. PDF Pro 3

  • Features: Annotations, drawings, voice recordings, import photos.

This iPhone PDF reader is also very well-known and used. Support password-protected PDF, import documents into the manager using Dropbox, OneDrive, or Google Drive. It is possible to insert audio notes or photos inside PDFs and perform file merging or split operations; however, for these features, a monthly subscription is required, even relatively cheap.

7. PDFelement

  • Features: font recognition, style change, converter, photo to PDF, manual signature, PDF document sharing.

The computer version has been reviewed on these pages: Create Edit a PDF file. Exciting is the possibility of recognizing the font used in a PDF to modify the same then and avoid inconsistencies in the text. The iPhone PDF reader has built-in functionality for scanning documents.

8. PDF Reader

  • Features: bookmarks, annotations, drawing, PDF signature, Scanner.

PDF Reader allows you to read even multiple PDFs at the same time. In addition to the functionality expected of a reader (annotations, deletions), it can add date and time to documents. It can be used as a scanner and combine various pages into one PDF file. The paid version allows you to synchronize files between other platforms.

9. Xodo PDF Pro

  • Features: annotations, access to cloud services.

It is a straightforward iPhone PDF reader, but that does what it takes: it allows fast PDF reading on iPhone/iPad. It lets you zoom in on documents and synchronize the files available on your favorite cloud services: iCloud, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, etc. It is entirely free.

10. PDF Expert

  • Features: annotations, cancellations, form filling, cloud support.

Readdle created another iPhone PDF reader. It allows you to fill in the forms available within the PDF and supports practically all cloud services.

On iPad, it is very convenient to use Apple Pencil (only on newer iPads) to annotate the document directly with the Apple pen. The Pro version allows editing PDFs, inserting images, and adding external links.

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