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PDF expert 7: the free update

We are starting to see a subscription trend with a lot of applications on Appstore, which I believe could be the death of most them. I hope app developers know this: not every app can sustain a subscription setup. Paid updates, perhaps. I could try understand that. Subscriptions… that’s a different story.

I am NOT happy with this subscription move that PDF Expert 7 has made! I was upset when I first got the notification! I am still upset.

I will not be paying a subscription to use PDF expert 7 pro features. $50/year for three features! They don’t even have a monthly subscription offer. They have subscription offer for about $12/month.

Developers must consider having their apps on Android and Windows platforms too, to increase revenue!

This is a review of the free version PDF expert 7 update. I will signup for the trial version to show you guys the pro features you are getting in a different article.

If you had PDF expert 6 pro you don’t lose your pro features. PDF expert 6 pro was U$20, one time payment.

This is officially the worst update I have seen in any app this year! It breaks my heart it came from Readdle.

The interface’s improved. It is cleaner and more slick. Which is to be expected of any app in 2019. I love the new look.

The homepage

Its set up has slightly changed. You get an option to Create a PDF at the very top of the sidebar. The app is designed to convince you to sign up for the pro version everywhere you turn. It combines available features with unavailable ones.

This is could be a great marketing strategy or a very bad one, depending on who’s on the receiving end. I am not subscribing for the pro version. If I accidentally keep tapping unavailable pro features, I will delete the app. I already have a replacement for what I was needing PDF expert 6 for. If I didn’t have a replacement, I’d probably just subscribe out of frustration.

What are you likely to do out of frustration? Delete the app from your iPad or subscribe?

They renamed the ‘on my iPad’ option to my files. This contains all the files in your app.

Your Recents tab has been moved up. It used to be further down, the very last icon on the sidebar.

They added a feature allowing you to add your favourite files and folders for easier access. That’s quite useful.

You can now collapse the sidebar. If you prefer a minimalist look on your homepage, you will like this! I like it!

You can change your theme to a light one now. It only works for the homepage at the moment. I like the lighter theme, despite my obsession with dark mode. It makes the app look cleaner and more spacious.

The popup menu for managing your files in the app has changed too. It used to have a thumbnail setup. Now it’s a list. I prefer this list approach. It’s more professional.

File editing options appear as a list as well. They now replace the sidebar when you select to edit a file on the homepage.

Readdle has done a great job improving the user interface. But that’s not worth a subscription payment. Not even an upgrade fee!

In the app, they have also made their tools easily accessible. In PDF expert 6 their tools were difficult and unpleasant to navigate. It is now much easier to select a tool from your toolbar.

You can even add and removed tabs from your toolbar now. The only tab I don’t want on my toolbar is the one with favourites. It’s not available on my version of the app.

The app now supports two pen types; a ball point and fountain one. As I like to call them. The writing feels good. It might make for a good note taking app, if you like the GoodNotes inking style. This feature is available for the free version of the app. Cool idea for a free note taking app.

The only problem I had with the pen tool before was that they didn’t offer enough thickness variety. They fixed that.

They also separated the pen from the highlighter. In the previous version these fell under the same tool. One had to temper with the thickness, and opacity to get a decent highlighter. Their marker still has 100% opacity though. Kinda defeats the purpose of being a highlighter in the first place, doesn’t it?

Their eraser now erases per stroke and per pixel. They went with Notability’s look on this one. Are the developers talking? Or are they using a similar basic code? Interesting.

This post is only focusing on the changes by the way; it’s not a full app review. I am skipping everything hasn’t changed.

They have added stickers! I love stickers!

For images, you can now choose the quality of photos you add to your PDFs. You still can’t drag and drop images out of PDF expert 7. This drag and drop feature is very important. Especially if you just want to extract information out of your PDF. A PDF reader without a drag and drop feature? It’s a handicap.

You can now add audio to your PDFs. The audio record icon is cute. The app doesn’t export the audio files yet. I say yet because I doubt they added this feature to keep your audio files in the app. Time will tell.
The app doesn’t even give you the option to export your audio. This is definitely something they’re still working on. It’s too incomplete to be the final product.

Those are all the changes available for free, to anyone upgrading from PDF expert 6 pro to the free PDF expert 7. Nothing impressive or exciting about this update.

What you think about this subscription plague that’s spreading on Appstore?

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