Best Free PDF Reader for Android

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Introduction

The PDF format has become the de-facto ebook format around the world as many corporations, publishing companies, institutions, universities and such publish their work as PDFs.

Until not long ago, if you wanted to read a PDF file on your Android device you had no choice but installing Adobe's official PDF Reader app. Although not bad at all, Adobe Reader was the only app with good text and image rendering capabilities; it was also the fastest one and was relatively light too.

Things have changed, however, as some talented developers and some software companies have published their very own PDF reading apps. While some of them are of a relatively lightweight nature (providing you only with viewing options and the simplest interface), some others are really powerful PDF reading suites which include extra features and tools like image/text filtering, text search and selection, bookmarking, comments and annotation tools along with the standard viewing options which are on par with the ones Adobe provides.

Because of that, we have split this review into two categories: Best Free PDF Reading Suite (includes the most powerful apps for PDF reading, with signature, annotation and even cloud-based storage options) and Best Free PDF Viewer (it includes the best basic PDF viewers for Android, no extras attached). In both cases, we tried to cover only the best and 100% PDF reading apps, that's why you will not see any app's "lite" version unless it has something really special that makes it noteworthy.

 

Best Free PDF Reading Suite

Adobe Acrobat Reader  

The mobile version is lighter for reliably viewing, annotating and signing PDFs


Our Rating: 
4.5
License: Free
Supports PDF portfolios, password protected PDFs and fillable forms; multiple view modes, text search, thumbnails, annotations, signatures, bookmarks and hyperlinks.
Latest versions contain menu entries and options that require purchasing.
Read full review...

SmartQ Reader  

A very capable PDF reader packs a complete set of notation tools that work great on mobiles


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free
Very capable PDF reader. Fast and accurate text rendering. Tablet and phone compatible. Packs a complete set of notation tools.
Won't work on phones with a screen resolution lower than 320 x 480 pixels. Some compatibility issues when reading comments and notations made with other apps.
Read full review...

Foxit MobilePDF  

Provides a good PDF reading experience thanks to its complete suite of tools


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free
Very complete suite of annotation and bookmarking tools. Interesting signature feature. Direct access to cloud-based storage services.
It can get very demanding on older phones specially with image-rich PDFs. High RAM usage levels. Big installation size.
Read full review...

Best Free PDF Viewer

MuPDF  

A very fast and reliable PDF viewer supports not only PDFs, but also XPS, Open XPS and CBZ files


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free (Open source)
Fast and reliable text rendering. Solid text-reflow option. Supports PDFs, XPS, Open XPS and CBZ files. Can fill interactive PDF forms.
Occasional hiccups with really big and complex PDF files. The zooming function could be a little better.
Read full review...

AnDoc - PDF & DJVU Reader  

A very good app provides a good PDF reading experience even on low-spec devices


Our Rating: 
3
License: Free
Fast text and image rendering. Lots of options to customize the app's settings and your reading experience. Really good zooming and bookmarking.
Detected as malicious adware by some anti-malware apps. No text-reflow option. Recent files cannot be cleared.
Read full review...

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Editor

This software category is in need of an editor. If you would like to give something back to the freeware community by taking it over, check out this page for more details or contact us by clicking here.

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Comments

EBook reader is a good pdf reader and after trying a good few decided this is about the best, open source and can scroll with mouse with droid tv boxes ,Adobe reader only drag with mouse,only negative is not as quick to load.
https://code.google.com/p/ebookdroid/

Hi there I've just taken on this category as well as ebook readers. I'll be checking out the existing apps for any updates needed as well as those mentioned in comments suggestions. This may take me a little while, but I'm on it. Coming soon!

Just installed Andoc but removed it because Avira said the Domob adware tagged along. Guess I'll try MuPDF

Wow. Thank you for bringing that to our attention. Truth is new didn't find problems when we reviewed the app. We will check it again using the latest definitions to confirm it. Rest assured we will make any changes necessary to the review once we check that up. In the meantime, try installing 'PDF Content Viewer' from Qumu Corp. It is a MuPDF fork with gorgeous looks and a very efficient text rendering engine. It will be added to the review in the update, which should happen the next week. Best regards.
Hi there, After a nice talk with our site editor, I took over this category. As you see, the current review needs some updating, so I will try to gather the best and 100% free PDF readers for your Android devices in the following weeks. I've read your comments and your app suggestions and they will help me to build my future reviews. Thanks for taking the time to read this, and come back soon to read the updated review. Regards.