PDF Reader from Kdan Mobile Software for iPhone and iPod Touch

This past week I did a review of Documents to Go Premium. I really like that product – it does a wonderful job of working with MS Office documents. But a lot but my main use of it is as a PDF reader – really a secondary function of that program. So when I saw a new stand-alone PDF reader program for only 99 cents I decided I had to take a look so I bought a copy and started playing. So how did it do? Let’s take a look!

I won’t make this long and painful.  This program does one important thing – it allows you to read and view PDF files. I’ll start right off and say that, for me, it did a wonderful job of this!   I am extremely pleased with how smoothly this program operated! Having said that, it will also does allow you to view a variety of file types, but PDF files are what it’s primarily about.

You start by pressing the little computer icon in the bottom left of the program window. When you do that, you are offered a couple of ways to get the files from your to your iPhone/iPod Touch. The really good news is that the upload process is completely platform agnostic. The WiFi option tells you to point your desktop browser to the IP address of your iPhone, which then gives you a file selection and upload dialog.

The other option with this program is one that lets you download a PDF file directly from a website into the application (and track the download progress). That is very cool!

Both import mechanisms work very well and even allow very large files to be uploaded into your device. I have to say that really like this mechanism much better than the email attachment import or desktop app approaches offered in DTG. Additionally, this process uploads the files and they stay there. They are not expired out (unless you choose ANY) as they are in DTG. I also appreciate that no 3rd party app is required.  This means that transfers are really platform agnostic. I really think that the folks at DataVis would do well to implement this kind of file handling feature in Documents to Go.  It’s clean and easy and was extremely reliable for me.

Ok.  So once the file is in your device, the initial page rendering happened at about the same speed in PDF Reader as it did in Documents to Go, but after that point, PDF Reader really started to shine.  In PDF Reader,  I found the movement around the page to be significantly more fluid – with far fewer pauses. I also found zooms in and out to render much more quickly and fluidly.  Overall, it provided me with the most satisfying PDF viewing experience that I’ve had on the iPhone to date.

But viewing isn’t the only thing that this program can do.  There is actually  a scanning feature that will use the camera of your iPhone to generate a PDF file.  It’s pretty basic, but it’s a really neat feature and you can even crop the image before saving it or emailing it.  So really, there are 3 ways of getting PDFs into the program!

On top of all this, there are a lot of options for auto scrolling (they call it auto flow), locking the horizontal movement, locking the screen rotation, and if you need to send the document elsewhere, there is even an emailing option.

What I Liked: The speed and fluidity, even when handling large PDFs, was very nice and very impressive.

What could Be Improved: Not much.  I’m really pleased with this application as it currently stands.  Perhaps giving us an editing module in the future? (But not if it interferes with the performance of the reader!)

Overall: The short form? This application has become my primary application for viewing PDF files and even other types of files. It is very clean, very smooth, and it handles even very large PDF files well – even ones that are mostly bitmapped graphics. The price is extremely reasonable and the features very nice.

I highly recommend that you take a look at the PDF Reader from Kdan Mobile if you are in the market for a decent PDF reader for the iPhone or iPod Touch!  It’s available in the AppStore for 99 cents and worth much more than that, in my humble opinion, if you need decent PDF viewing on your iPhone or iPod Touch!

About the Author

Christopher Gavula
Chris has been a COBOL programmer, a desktop support technician, network engineer, telecommunications manager, and even a professional musician. Currently, he is focused on deploying Voice over IP technologies in a large, corporate setting. He started working full-time at the tender age of 14, even before there were PCs, and will probably be working and trying to finish “just one more project” as he’s lowered into the grave.