Nitro’s products are on par with their main competitor Adobe’s equivalents and even have some of their own advantages, which has led to Nitro becoming one of the most popular Adobe alternatives. While Nitro’s main focus is on their Nitro Productivity Suite, they do offer a free PDF Reader as well.
What Nitro PDF Reader does best
The free Nitro Reader can do pretty much anything comparable software like Foxit or Adobe Reader can do. This includes highlighting text, adding annotations, filling forms, signing documents and of course just viewing PDFs.
For more advanced tasks like converting and editing PDFs, there’s Nitro Pro. It now comes as part of the Nitro Productivity Suite which also includes Nitro Sign, a tool designed to make filling out forms and signing documents easier. Together these tools help make it easy to work with PDFs both on your own and in collaboration with others.
Nitro Reader offers features you’d expect from a high quality PDF reader, such as page navigation controls on screen and through the arrow keys, showing bookmarks for going to certain sections of a PDF, and a search function. There are also a variety of view and zoom options for displaying PDFs however you want to.
As mentioned before, Nitro Reader also offers tools for filling and signing documents, adding annotations and highlighting text. Two unique features that Nitro Reader has is the ability to convert PDFs to plain text documents and to extract images from PDFs.
With Nitro Pro from the Nitro Productivity Suite, you have access to advanced features like being able to create PDFs in a variety of different ways, converting PDFs to other file types like Word and Excel, and combining different files into one PDF. The Productivity Suite also comes with Nitro Sign, which allows you to request signatures on a document from others over the internet, letting them sign in any web browser.
Other standout features of Nitro Pro include the Erase tools which can whiteout or redact text and the OCR tool. OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition, and is a function that can interpret text from an image, like that of a scanned document, into searchable and editable text.
Nitro Reader is completely free, while Nitro Productivity Suite comes at a steep, but comparatively reasonable one time price of $159. However, access to updates and customer support come as separate optional charges.
For $29.99 you get access to unlimited updates for 1 year from the purchase date. Nitro VIP access costs $49.99 and gives you both unlimited updates and access to Nitro’s customer support team for 1 year.
You can also download a free trial of Nitro Productivity Suite which will allow you to test out its capabilities for around 14 days. After that you’ll need to purchase it in order to use the full feature set.
What users have to say about Nitro PDF Reader
Most users have great things to say about Nitro’s software, one of the most common being how user friendly it is, especially when it comes to the easy to use interface. With the Nitro Productivity Suite, many users mention liking how easy it makes getting documents signed. Other often said positives include the OCR and file conversion features.
As for negatives, some users say that Nitro Pro has occasional performance problems and even crashes. There are also reports of both OCR and file conversion not working as well as they could. For example, having ugly or misplaced characters. These are common problems with most OCR and PDF conversion tools, however.
Both Nitro Reader and Nitro Pro are only available on Windows. A request to sign a document through Nitro Sign can be completed on nearly any device’s web browser, but it must be sent from a Windows system.
Nitro Reader is no longer offered directly through Nitro’s website, but can be found on reputable software download websites, such as CNET or Tom’s Guide.
Nitro’s software doesn’t stand out much from other options, but whether you just need a program for viewing PDFs or a comprehensive set of tools for working with them, Nitro should have something for you; so long as you have a Windows PC.
Our score: ★★★★☆ 3.5/5