PDF editing is a very needed feature but not every app out there provides that functionality. Not only that, the ones that enable PDF editing are very costly. For instance, take the case of PDFPen – that costs you $60 for the full version. Adobe’s propriety can cause a huge dent in your pocket: about $200 for the editors.

Although PDF editors are costly, not everyone wants to edit PDF documents per se. More or less, it’s only to annotate, highlight or certain other research-oriented purposes. Much of this can be achieved through a variety of software that’s less costly or free. We’ll take a look at the options available for Mac users.

Best PDF Editors for Mac, iPhone and iPad

Best PDF Editors for Mac

1. Preview

Mac’s built-in solution, Preview, has become quite powerful over the years. One of the most impressive additions is the ability to annotate, highlight, adding images in a PDF file. Preview is as good as any other PDF editor out there but it is not a full-fledged editor: you can’t edit the entire PDF file as such. You can only take to a certain level of editing where you either add, or highlight sections of the PDF file. Preview can also help you combine files.

2. Skim

Skim is a popular, open-source and free PDF reader that doubles up as a research tool with it set of features. It’s pretty much the same as Preview on Mac but it works good for those quick annotations, comments and highlights.

3. PDFEscape (Online)

PDFEscape is not exactly a traditional solution but if you’re okay with online PDF editors, this could very well fit your need. PDFEscape is a free online editor that works with any modern browser: you upload the file and start editing.

Best PDF Editors for iPhone/iPad

Now that we’ve talked about PDF editors for the Mac, it’s also a good thing to take a look at some popular options available to do the same on iOS devices. There aren’t many popular apps or services for this, but if you’re ready to shell out some money, there are apps to help you annotate and read PDF docs on iOS devices.

1. Good Reader

Right on top of the list is Good Reader. Sells at $4.99 and brings pretty good PDF reading and editing capability. The app has got a separate version for the iPad.

Download Good Reader for iPhone and iPad

2. PDF Expert

Good Reader is good enough but you can’t fill/edit forms within the PDF file using Good Reader. PDF Expert is costlier than Good Reader but there are good features like scanning capabilities that make PDF Expert a little more advanced than Good Reader.

Download PDF Expert

  • Greston Brewer

    I just downloaded this to annotate and save a contract on the fly and it saved my bacon – but it wouldn’t save my file, at least not directly. Not sure if that is a limitation or what – I had to print it to PDF, and give it a new name, and then – WHAM! File with changes saved to disc, able to email, etc. Tidy product, nice fast d/l and install. I will definitely throw them a few quid for Skim.

    http://www.pdf-file-converter.com/pdf-editor-for-mac/

  • http://tabletsmanuals.com/ iPad guide

    It’s one of the best software that you can surely attain. PDF files are very common and one of the most used files that you can literally see in a work or in a school and it’s a good thing that there is an implemented way on how can this be attained by iPhone users.

  • Karim

    GoodReader and PDF Expert are two of the best PDF apps on the App Store. I may be a little biased, but I would recommend our app, Xodo . It’s a free app on the App Store, and it’s getting great reviews.

  • http://facebook.com/icecowboy Maynard K

    Haha, you just saved me time, money, bloat and possibly frustration on my Mac with this brief, older article. Preview just did everything I needed for an important project.

    I was able to combine pages of multiple separate reports into one and add blank pages I could edit with text boxes to create a title page, breaks between the separate reports, etc.

    Perfect export to Word in editable form would be nirvana, but can live without it for a while yet. Annotating and combining will carry me for now. Yay!

    (If anyone falls across this thread and has a recommend, though, let me know. Disqus is great for tracking one’s comments and replies across sites that use it.)

    Meanwhile, I was lost on the app store trying to make sense of app descriptions and sorting through reviews that always seem to have polar opposites for every product – of which there many (and maybe too many of dubious quality).

    FYI – the “reviews” for one app were clearly “salted” by the maker, that is I surmise that the company used various Apple accounts get the app for each so they could write multiple reviews. Every review highlighted and praised a different program feature, but all were written in very ungrammatical (but suspiciously similar) broken English.

    …as was the app description itself. You think…??? :p

    Makes me question the whole value of a number of reviews, e.g., competitors bombing other company’s products with bad ones, etc. All kinds of potential BS.