PDF Reader Pro - View, Annotate, Form Filler review: A lightweight Windows app for basic editing needs

This freebie makes it easy to edit, annotate, and share documents, but it lacks advanced functions.

pdf reader pro 1
Michael Ansaldo/IDG

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At a Glance

PDF Reader Pro - View, Annotate, Form Filler tells you everything you need to know  about it right there in its name. This free, lightweight Windows app provides a basic set of tools for working with Adobe Acrobat documents in an unintimidating interface.

This review is part of our best PDF editors roundup. Go there to learn about our testing and how all the competitors performed. 

PDF Reader Pro eschews the Office-style interface you see in a lot of PDF editors. Instead, a row of icons above the document pane provides access to editing functions. Another set down the left side lets you view the current document as thumbnails, change the display, or print.

The editing functions are pretty basic. You can add, highlight, underline, and strikethrough text; make freehand markups; add notes, hyperlinks, and stamps; and bookmark pages. A three-dot menu at the end of the top toolbar holds the file info, save, and share buttons. With the last, you can share a PDF via Dropbox, Email, Skype, Twitter, and other apps. A link is included to add more options from Microsoft Store.

pdf reader pro text Michael Ansaldo/IDG

PDF Reader Pro makes editing text simple and intuitive.

The straightforward interface makes editing docs quick and easy. To add text, for example, you just click the text icon, which opens a drop-down menu where you can select your font style, color, and size. Then you just place the cursor where you want it and type away. Adding a stamp is as simple as choosing one of the 14 offered, then clicking on the page where you want it to appear.

Clicking the BOTA button from the left-side toolbar allows you to view any of the bookmarks, outlines, thumbnails, and annotations associated with the current document by toggling through a smaller sub-toolbar. From here you can jump to specific bookmarks, sections, chapters, or pages within a document and quickly scroll through text revisions and comments.

PDF Reader Pro also supports PDF forms, allowing you to fill in interactive fields such as check and text boxes. You can sign documents and open password-protected files, as well.

pdf reader pro share Michael Ansaldo/IDG

You can share documents via social media, email, and cloud services right from the PDF Reader Pro toolbar.

As Acrobat alternatives go, PDF Reader Pro for Windows is more akin to Acrobat Reader than Acrobat Pro DC. You can’t create or convert PDFs, make fillable forms, or add pages to a document. You can also only open one document at a time. Those advanced functions are seemingly limited to the Mac version of PDF Reader Pro, which we may take a look at in the future.

Bottom Line

If you have modest PDF editing needs, PDF Reader Pro - View, Annotate, Form Filler provides all basic functions in an intuitive, easy-to-navigate interface. For heartier editors with more business-ready capabilities, you’d do better to check out the other options in our PDF editor guide.

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At a Glance
  • PDF Reader Pro - View, Annotate, Form Filler is an easy-to-use PDF reader for Windows with basic editing functions.


    • Easy-to-use, lightweight interface
    • Supports document editing, annoation, and sharing
    • Can fill interactive forms and sign documents


    • Can't create or convert PDFs
    • Can't add or delete pages
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