PDF Expert Full Review and Alternatives

PDF Expert



PDF Expert, from Readdle Inc, is a fast and robust PDF tool for Mac that allows you to read, convert, edit, annotate, and sign PDFs. This productivity tool is exclusive to the Apple ecosystem and is available on iPhone, iPad, and Mac, thereby facilitating the seamless transfer of documents across these devices.

The most outstanding functions of this tool lie in PDF editing, viewing, and this review will be guided mainly by these two functionalities. Thanks to the Readdle team for an incredibly fast and responsive app that saves you a ton of time and effort.

With a 4.5 star rating in the iOS App Store, PDF Expert is evidently quite popular among users. This review article seeks to identify the various features that make PDF Expert the real deal when it boils down to PDF editing and reading. But before that, here are some of the pros and cons;

Pros & Cons of PDF Expert

  • Fast document loading and processing
  • Offers ways to secure PDF files with passwords
  • Features full and partial document processing
  • Offers PDF editing and annotation options
  • Boasts PDF form filling tools
  • Offers fast search function
  • Lacks OCR functionality
  • Available only to the Apple ecosystem (Mac and iOS)

How to Use PDF Expert

Key Features in PDF Expert

PDF Expert is home to a ton of features and this section of the review takes an in-depth look at the various features that you are bound to enjoy. Without further ado, let us jump right in and get in the know of what makes this software tick.

PDF Reader


While most PDF reader apps just offer just a native viewing experience, PDF Expert goes the extra mile to make the experience much better and more fulfilling. To sweeten the reading experience, here are some of the features at your disposal;

  • Fast search and superfluid scrolling.
  • Instant opening of PDFs no matter the number of pages.
  • Pick your preferred mode for your eyes (Day, Night, or Sepia).
  • PDF Expert is the only PDF reader that can save bookmarks in the PDF document, whether you send or open it on any device.
  • View multiple PDFs side by side and performs actions like comparison.
  • Highlight, strikethrough, and underline text as you read; annotate.

All these features are geared towards a special kind of PDF viewing that many tools only covet. That is just how powerful this Mac and iOS app can be.

PDF Editor


PDF Expert opens you up to a revolutionized PDF editing experience by providing some of the most sought-after features. As a PDF editor, we will look at the various features offered coupled with their benefits. Here are some of the highlight editing features;

  • Text editing – Unlike other apps that may require manual detection, PDF Expert automatically detects the font, size, and opacity of the source PDF text so as to prepare you for convenient editing.
  • Image editing – At the click of a button, adding, replacing, and resizing images in a PDF feels just like a walk in the park. Whether you are changing a graph or a logo, this PDF editor is at your beck and call.
  • Redact information – To avoid information falling into the hands of unauthorized parties, this program helps you to whiteout or delete sensitive text or hidden data from the PDF before sharing.
  • Manage links – When you need to link any text or image to a different PDF page or even an external website, PDF Expert allows you to do exactly that with ease. Not many programs come close to such a feature.

Other features include the ability to add/edit page numbering and editing outlines for easy document navigation.

Merge and Split PDFs


A ton of options are available here and basically, by combining PDFs, a document becomes way easy to handle, share, and contains just the related information needed. By splitting, you are able to obtain just the information you require and avoid dealing with the entire file. PDF Expert lets you in on several options here like;

  • A thumbnail preview to help easily identify pages.
  • The ability to extract, rotate, reorder, delete, rotate, copy and paste PDF pages intuitively.
  • Processing specific pages, all pages, or page ranges.

Compress PDFs


There are instances that call for PDF optimization and this tool gives you the necessary tools to reduce documents in a way that fits various scenarios.

By having proper document compression, PDFs are compacted in a way that facilitates sharing, reduces the cost of storing PDFs in the cloud services (iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox), and saving storage space on your iPad, iPad Pro, iPhone, and Mac.

Annotate PDF Files


As a way to help you communicate better, PDF Expert offers some nifty and powerful annotation tools to make use of.

To be specific, you can markup text, apply highlights, strikethrough text, underline text, draw and sketch, add text anywhere, add shapes, add notes for that extra contextual knowledge, and select multiple text areas to cut off or copy.

And the best thing about this is the convenience of working straight from the Touch Bar. Also, a lot of unique stamps are at your disposal, and the chance to create custom ones.

PDF Form Filling

PDF Expert comes in to save you a ton of paper and time by letting you directly fill forms using some of the smartest tools you can get. Some of the forms (Acro and static XFA) you can fill cut across invoices, sales orders, W9 tax forms, inspection forms, insertion orders, contracts, among otters.

To be specific, you get to add text and numbers to the relevant fields, or even add text fields to non-interactive forms, work with checkboxes and also create your own when the need arises.

When you are required to add a signature to a PDF, this software provides custom signatures that are quite easy to work with. And just like the annotation tools, you can work from the touch bar.

PDF Expert vs. Adobe Acrobat

It is pretty evident that Adobe Acrobat is the most powerful PDF software going by the plethora of features, especially as a PDF editor. But even with that superiority, there are certain instances that PDF Expert comes at the top as outlined below;

  • PDF Expert presets a more intuitive general look and design that makes locating features easy compared to Adobe Acrobat that is a bit complex.
  • PDF Expert’s editing features are more than what you get in Acrobat. For instance, Readdle’s tool offers basic tools to annotate PDFs when complexity is not necessary.
  • Speed-wise, PDF Expert opens documents way faster and Adobe Acrobat tends to consume more resources (RAM) on your Apple device.
  • In terms of pricing, PDF Expert is way more affordable and features a one-time purchase which Acrobat is a bit pricey and is on a subscription basis.
  • PDF Expert has slightly fewer features but goes ahead to outdo Adobe Acrobat in terms of simplicity, intuitiveness, and just how fast the workflow becomes.
  • In regards to signing PDFs, you get a better e-sign experience on PDF Expert. In fact, documents can virtually be signed using the trackpad.
  • The stamp menu on PDF Expert offers better built-in choice including custom stamps in comparison to Adobe Acrobat.


PDF Expert is available as a limited free trial version which means you need the paid version to get rid of the limitations. You will love the pricing here considering that one license that can be used on 3 Macs goes for a one-time lifetime price of $79.99, with special offers for students and professors.


PDF Expert rides on the traits of being a fast, robust, and beautiful PDF editor, and lives to its name by providing all the necessary features for a comprehensive PDF experience. PDF editing, reading, annotating, merging, form filling, among other options, are a piece of cake for this program.

It has showcased its prowess by competing against the best of the best, Adobe Acrobat, and being way more affordable without forcing subscription-based pricing on you. With that, PDF Expert is your best PDF tool on both Mac and iOS.

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