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Top 10 PDF Annotators in 2022 

Ever tried to annotate a PDF file? If you have tried to annotate a PDF file, you probably know how difficult and time-consuming it can be. The struggle to add annotations to a PDF file is real. Here is where a PDF annotator tool comes into play. PDF annotator is the tool that makes it easy to add notes or annotations within a PDF document. Don’t know which is the best PDF annotator? No need to worry about it. In this article, I will discuss the top 10 PDF Annotators.

1. UPDF - Free PDF Annotator

UPDF is an all-free annotator tool. This free PDF annotator tool supports adding highlights and underlining in PDF for annotation. It has a user-friendly interface and easy navigation that is specially designed for the ease of its users. It allows you to edit, annotate and organize PDF pages effortlessly. It also supports several other features such as strikeout, adding sticky notes, text boxes, stamps, various stickers, and different shapes in PDF for annotation. Use this tool to make annotations on PDF with a delightful experience.


  • Free to use
  • Provides secure space to protect files with sensitive information
  • User-Friendly interface
  • Formats consistency
  • Time-saving tool
  • Compatible with Windows, Mac, and iOS.


  • Its Android product does not support annotation yet.

If you want to learn more about PDF annotation apps for Mac, we've also listed 5 easy-to-use PDF annotators on Mac for you. You can check them if needed.

2. Adobe Acrobat Reader

Adobe Acrobat Reader is the most standard PDF annotation tool used to annotate, comment, print, and sign e-forms. It is free and easy to download and install. It has a variety of annotation tools present in it. It allows you to sign, collaborate on, and annotate PDF files easily. From rotating pages to extracting PDF pages, organize them exactly the way you want. 


  • Compatible with all devices
  • Ability to zoom & customize the toolbar
  • Hassle-free e-sign
  • Password protect PDF files
  • Easy to navigate


  • Top features are only available for the paid version.
adobe reader PDF annotator

3. PDF Annotator

PDF Annotator is a standalone tool for all your PDF purposes. It allows you to add notes, annotations, and drawings to any PDF document. You can easily add comments on the top of the PDF page with this annotation app for windows. Its feature to restore the original document with one click makes it stand out. 


  • You can easily add images.
  • Add stamps from several virtually available options
  • Available for an easy to use layout
  • Group and lock annotation
  • Can save annotations in the original file
  • A user-friendly software 


  • Digital signatures are not supported
  • Windows-only annotation software
pdf annotator

4. Foxit PDF Annotation Tool

Foxit PDF is also one of the best annotation tools that includes a typewriter tool, note highlighter, pencil, and much more. You can easily edit PDF from anywhere – across desktop, mobile, and web. Its easy-to-use interface makes it highly rated among users. It is a lightweight system that provides multiple annotation options. 


  • Embedded social media sharing
  • Support Windows and mac
  • Easy to use interface 
  • Advanced text editing


  • It does not allow multiple devices per license
  • It is not a free annotation tool
foxit pdf annotator

5. Nitro PDF Annotator

Nitro PDF Pro is software to annotate PDF files. It comes loaded with several various features. You can combine, annotate, comment, and edit PDF documents. It also allows you to condense the collection of documents into single, searchable documents. The team collaboration feature lets you easily view, share, annotate, and collaborate on documents. It has a familiar Microsoft Office-style interface for easy adaptation.


  • Easy to use signing tools
  • Batch security
  • Scan and OCR PDF files
  • An affordable option as compared to others
  • Regular updates


  • Limited functionality in free mode
  • Doesn’t include advanced annotation tools
nitro pdf annotator

6. SwifDoo PDF Annotator

SwifDoo PDF is an all-in-one PDF annotator software. It is a lightweight software that enables you to create, convert, merge compress, and sign PDF documents. It allows you to view and annotate quickly even for heavy files of 600 pages. It has a Microsoft Word-like user interface which makes it easy to use. It also enables you to easily insert or replace images in a PDF file if necessary.  


  • Free trial option included
  • User-friendly interface
  • No data loss
  • Functions instantly between PDF documents
  • Option to secure documents available


  • Windows only annotation tool
swifdoo pdf annotation tool

7. Soda PDF Annotator

Soda PDF is a PDF annotator software built with powerful PDF tools to make your life simple. It offers PDF editing tools that work across multiple devices. You can edit, merge, converge, convert or split PDF documents easily with Soda PDF. Download it to use as a desktop app or use it online from your web browser. Its other features include adding sticker notes, OCR, e-signatures, and much more. 


  • Supported by Windows and Mac
  • Fastest Microsoft to PDF converter 
  • Supports 8 languages
  • Available online & offline 
  • Involves third-party cloud apps
  • Supports batch processing


  • The Trial version needs registration
  • Some bugs reported in the latest version
  • Online tools are available with fewer customization options
soda PDF annotator

8. PDF-XChange Editor

PDF-Xchange Editor is a fully-featured PDF annotator tool. It helps you to edit, correct, add or remove text effortlessly. Its free version allows you to use several features which include creating, modifying, and highlighting PDFs. It has a track change feature that allows you to track all the changes done to a PDF file. You can also move, resize or remove graphics using this PDF annotator tool.


  • Free & paid versions are available
  • Improved image embedding
  • Quick text manipulation
  • Track change function available 


  • Windows only annotation software
  • Free version watermarks some tools
pdf-xchange editor annotator

9. PDFescape - Free Software to Annotate PDF

PDFescape is a free PDF annotator software that allows you to comment and markup PDF documents. It is an online open-source PDF reader and editor. You can easily highlight, underline, and strikethrough content with PDFescape editor. It enables you to choose from a number of various features available online and offline. 


  • Available for online & offline use
  • No watermarks
  • Simple & easy to use interface
  • Form filling options are available
  • Share documents online


  • The Paid version requires a subscription
  • Only supports Windows 
pdfescape software to annotate pdf

10. Qiqqa - Annotator for Windows

Qiqqa is a free research and reference manager used by academics, researchers, and businesses. It is an open-source platform that lets you automatically produce citations and bibliographies in various styles. Add annotations, highlights, free form drawings, or view multiple pages at once with Qiqqa. It provides superb reference and document management. You can import documents into separate libraries and do much more. 


  • Google-like power
  • Provides unlimited storage 
  • Android app available 
  • Protected & secure PDFs


  • Windows only software
qiqqa PDF annotation app windows

Wrapping up

PDF annotators have made our lives much easier. They not only improve productivity at work but also allow you to collaborate seamlessly with users with the tools provided. Annotate, highlight, convert, add stamps or collaborate with users with one of the PDF annotator tools mentioned above.

Each tool allows you to work effortlessly and has its own significance but if you ask my favorite PDF annotator, then I would recommend UPDF Annotator. It can be used both at work and at home and provides a variety of features to work through. I recommend UPDF Annotator as the best PDF annotator to make annotations on PDF with a delightful experience.