best pdf reader


If you want to access a Portable Document Format (PDF) document these days, the first thing that springs to mind is web browsers, most of which now have a PDF reader. This has decreased the requirement for specialized PDF reader or PDF reader software. However, it is important to select the best PDF reader software that suits your needs based on functions such as digital signature, form filling, annotation, and so on, which help to optimize and edit your PDF documents as required.

If you want to download the best PDF reader applications for your device, you have a plethora of possibilities. But which one should you go for? So, we’ve put together a list of the eleven best PDF readers for your PCs and devices.

Choosing the best PDF reader to meet your requirements in 2024 isn’t difficult, but you should be aware of your possibilities. So, here are the major options to help you choose the best software for viewing and reading your PDF files:



1. Adobe Acrobat Reader

If you’re seeking a robust tool to read PDF files, I suggest Adobe Acrobat Reader. It is not uncommon to stumble across a PDF file that necessitates the use of an advanced PDF reader. I’m referring to fillable forms that you can’t handle with a simple PDF reader.

Adobe Reader includes several reading modes; text highlighting; making notes; completing forms; digital signatures; adding stamps; and more. Adobe’s free PDF reader now offers a tabbed view, which allows you to open several PDF files at the same time.

So, if your requirements aren’t simple, you don’t want to just “read” PDF files, and you want additional functionality, installing Adobe Acrobat Reader DC is the best option. It is also the best PDF reader for huge files that other lightweight apps can’t properly handle.


  • It converts and edits PDF files.
  • It provides advanced editing and signature features.
  • supports several platforms.


  • A premium pro edition with more capabilities is also available.
  • Minor software bugs exist.


2. SumatraPDF

SumatraPDF is a free and best PDF reader is quite light, with a 64-bit installation that is just approximately 5MB in size. So, if you’re seeking an excellent PDF reader software that can give a terrific reading experience with quick performance and vital features, SumatraPDF is the appropriate PDF reader for you.

However, it lacks advanced capabilities such as annotations, document signatures, and form filling. It includes a variety of keyboard shortcuts to help you browse quickly and enhance your reading experience. Sumatra also includes quick previewing of LaTeX texts, and you can set up multiple text editors to incorporate Sumatra. The free PDF reader may also be operated in a limited mode.


  • It supports a number of file formats, including ePub.
  • It’s a lightweight app.


  • There are no editing tools.
  • No support for advanced features.


3. Foxit Reader PDF

If you’re seeking a powerful and free PDF reader, Foxit Reader may be the answer. Foxit, like Adobe Acrobat Reader DC, is a well-known brand in the area of document readers. However, when compared to Adobe’s PDF reading solution, Foxit is far lighter. Foxit also just announced its new online ConnectedPDF Document Management System.

Its Text Viewer option gets rid of complicated formatting and shows the file as if it were written in Notepad. The collaboration capabilities enhance your PDF experience by allowing you to work online and share it with others.

The full version of Foxit Reader is a powerful tool that can be bought for just $89 once. It can be used to view PDF files and organize a lot of documents as required.


  • It provides cloud-sharing tools.
  • It provides a collaborative feature for working with others.
  • It contains extensive editing features.


  • Minor software bugs on earlier versions
  • It uses a lot of system resources.


4. Expert PDF Reader

Another free software option is Visagesoft’s Expert PDF Reader. It has the appearance and feel of vintage Microsoft Office programs. Expert PDF Reader, on the other hand, is an alternative worth considering since it is excellent at what it does. In terms of functionality, this Windows PDF reader can handle practically any document you throw at it.

You may also change annotations, add rubber stamps, and so on in existing files that were prepared using other tools. With the free Expert PDF reader, you can also bookmark files, examine page thumbnails, and use the tabs feature to open multiple PDF files at the same time.


  • It supports a variety of file types.
  • It handles huge files effectively.


  • It lacks advanced tools and capabilities.
  • Inconvenient for expert users


5. Nitro PDF Reader

Nitro Reader is another well-known brand in the area of office and productivity applications. Personally, I enjoy this free PDF document viewer since it aims to achieve the optimal mix between convenience and functionality. It does not include a slew of extraneous features that you will never use. Its smooth UI appears like any other program in Microsoft’s Office suite.

Nitro Reader has a helpful QuickSign function that makes digitally signing documents a breeze. You may also safeguard your documents and ensure that they are only opened by people who have acquired a digital certificate from you. So, choose Nitro Reader if you want a simple PDF reader with a beautiful interface.


  • The UI is simple to use.
  • It provides a number of advanced features.
  • Some features are exclusive to this app.


  • Users are compelled to use a free trial of the pro version.
  • It disables certain features in the free version.


6. Google Drive

Google Drive, like your web browser, is another option to access a PDF file without the need for any additional software. However, it functions majorly as an online PDF reader. It provides basic functions such as PDF printing, download, and content searching inside the document. Just choose the option to open a PDF in Google Docs and turn it into a format that you can edit.

Aside from opening a PDF in its most basic form, you can extend the functionality of this PDF reader by adding external Chrome applications. Overall, if you usually keep documents on your Google Drive, it might be an excellent alternative to standard PDF readers.


  • Convenient access through browsers or other devices
  • You can access PDF files from any device.


  • It lacks advanced editing tools.
  • Only an online version is available.


7. WinZip PDF Pro

WinZip PDF Pro is so focused on viewing PDFs that it’s the first thing you’ll notice when you launch this best PDF reader for your device. It has all the standard tools and easily, and the UI is clean and stylish which makes navigating it simple. The hardware requirements are modest, it is an appropriate PDF reader for low-end PCs.

The software costs $75/£78 per year, which is about typical given the capabilities on offer.


  • The UI is simple and attractive.
  • It is easy to use.


  • Annual subscriptions may not be suitable for everyone.
  • Some odd design decisions and occasional issues


8. Slim PDF

Slim PDF, like SumatraPDF, is a lightweight software to consider if you’re looking for the best PDF reader for your device. Slim PDF prides itself as the world’s smallest desktop PDF reader.

It’s a simple PDF reader for PC users that has just been upgraded with a revamped UI and support for the dark mode that many people like. As one would think, this free PDF program is just concerned with reading, displaying, and printing PDF files.

Slim PDF loads rapidly and allows you to finish your task in less time. Please keep in mind that this Windows PDF reader does not support many common keyboard shortcuts, so don’t be disappointed. It also does not allow you to highlight your content word for word. Anyway, it’s a portable PDF reader that just works.


  • It’s a lightweight application
  • The UI is simple to use.


  • It lacks advanced features.
  • Inefficient file processing


9. Javelin PDF Reader

The Javelin PDF Reader is one of the best PDF readers on the list for 2022. It includes all of the fundamental PDF reading capabilities required to conduct everyday tasks. The general interface is really clear, and you can choose from most of the popular reading modes, such as full screen, continuous, side-by-side, and so on.

When compared to Adobe Acrobat Reader DC and Foxit Reader, Javelin‘s download size is just 2MB. This free PDF reader for the PC can open DRM-protected files without trouble and supports markup and annotation.


  • It’s a little program.
  • It is convenient for users who just want to browse PDFs.


  • Advanced users should avoid it.
  • It lacks editing capabilities.


10. PDF Xchange Editor

PDF Xchange Editor is a free PDF reader that has been totally redesigned and streamlined. It has fast loading speeds and gives a lightweight experience for reading, printing, annotating, saving pictures and text, and so on from a PDF file.

Previously, this software was known as PDF-XChange Viewer, and it did not provide basic editing features for free. You also get features like OCR and digital signatures. However, the UI may seem overloaded with too many choices; maybe a revamp might offer some breathing space.

According to the people who made PDF-XChange Editor, the free version has more than 60% of the features of the paid version.


  • The UI is simple to use.
  • It provides basic features.
  • It can generate PDF files from existing files.


  • The editing features need a premium version.
  • It is more expensive than other PDF readers.


11. PDF Suite

PDF Suite is an effective PDF reader software as it allows the user to edit, create, read, convert, review and also secure PDF documents. PDF Suite also has an interactive and easy-to-use interface.

This software can be used to create PDFs from an existing document. It optimizes editing by allowing the user to modify images or texts as required, fill forms, encrypt PDFs, customize printing and a host of other options.

The PDF Suite also offers a more advanced package referred to as the PDF Suite Pro which offers more option for easily creating, converting, editing, reviewing, and securing your documents.


  • Can be read by virtually any computer
  • Easy-to-use
  • Provides a variety of basic options
  • Good for revisions and providing feedback


  • Does not support online conversion
  • Does not support MAC or mobile
  • The activation code is computer-specific



We’ve been able to discuss extensively on the best PDF reader for your devices, particularly your computer. We hope at least one of the above editors caught your eye and aligns with your preferences. It is advisable to carefully read through the list as well as features. This will help make effective and competent decisions regarding which PDF reader best suits your requirements in the short- and long-term. Also, these software are usually improved over time, so it wouldn’t hurt to check back for better options if any currently used reader becomes redundant or fails to function as required.

Chris Cornell

Chris Cornell is a leading expert in the field of research and data analysis. He is also a technical project manager and SCRUM professional with over 3 years of experience in the field of data analytics, research, and professional writing. Cornell has worked for reputable companies and research institutions, and his expertise includes statistical analysis, survey design, and data visualization. Presently, he is focused on actively building the Nenody brand and providing value and evidence-based information.

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