How To Read PDF Documents Without A Specialized Viewer Software


28.09.2009

As PDF documents and Powerpoint Presentations became a very important part in our electronic life, we decided to write this article that will cover various ways of reading the contents of such files whenever a viewer software is not installed on the computer or mobile phone you are using.

Option 1. Upload to document hosting sites. This has two advantages: you can read the content after you upload the file and you can always read it again from another computer’s browser without having to upload it again. Scribd and SlideShare are one of the best in this domain, so we recommend you try them first. This has a downside though: you need to have Adobe Flash support. This makes it impossible to read this type of documents on your BlackBerry or iPhone. Fortunately, there are alternatives.

Option 2. Use Google Docs Viewer. This service is great for both regular users and web publishers. In our scenario, where you are trying to view a PDF or PowerPoint Presentation on your Mobile Phone that can’t work with Adobe flash, you just enter the URL of a PDF or PPT and Google Docs Viewer will display the contents using JavaScript. Easy an simple. Web publishers, can also make their online hosted documents easier to read by linking Google Viewer to The Documents.

Option 3. Use Zoho Viewer. If the document is not hosted online so you can paste the link into Google Docs Viewer, Zoho Viewer is the best way around that. It can work with almost all Office formats. Upload the file and you can read it or just go to a document hosted on another server. It has some disadvantages compared to the Google Docs Viewer, such as the fact that you can create direct links and that it is not the most mobile ready service, but it will get the job done.

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