Portable Document Format, also known as PDF, is a system that was developed in the early 1990s to make document sharing easier. It was designed at the time when sharing a document between two computers with different operating systems (OS) was often problematic. When a document was transferred, the format was changed to adapt to the receiving operating system, creating serious difficulties in reading and understanding the information located within. Now, PDF conversion is a critical capability in any startup’s document management system.
Having discovered this problem, Adobe developed PDF to maintain a fixed format and adapt to any system. Today, it has become prominent around the world. It is now used in the business world for invoices, memos, customer records, and bank statements. In the academic world, it may be used for admission letters and publications. In fact, the PDF is used in almost every aspect of the world that makes use of computers for any reason.
Facts about PDFs
Even if you have read or scanned a PDF in the past, you may not know these pieces of information about it:
- PDF is the proprietary brainchild of Adobe.
- PDF became an “open standard” in 2008 when Adobe relinquished its control to the International Organization for Standardization. It was published as ISO 32000-1:2008. The second version was documented under ISO 32000-2.
- PDF is a “read-only” file. It cannot be edited in its basic form. However, it has become editable with updates in some software. People can use pdf collaboration tools to annotate PDFs online resulting in better collaboration.
- PDF can work on any platform or operating system (OS) without losing its format. This is because the format is static and does not change with the OS.
- PDF has seen several improvements since it was first developed. Originally it could take hours to download PDF documents over slow internet connections without a hyperlink and it usually required a paid subscription to Adobe. Now, reading and creating PDF docs is a simple procedure that can happen almost instantaneously and basic forms of Adobe software are available to almost anyone as a free downloadable program.
- PDF can adapt to any device and OS.
Advantages of PDF Conversion
If you are thinking of hiring a PDF conversion service to scan documents to PDF, you may be interested in learning more about what this could do for your business.
Consider the following benefits:
Universally Accepted: Due to its static nature, PDF has become a widely accepted document that can be shared, viewed and read anywhere—irrespective of the device OS or model. PDF formatting makes document sharing more comfortable and less problematic than it was in the past. Whether you are sharing to a mobile device or computer, it will always be acceptable.
Static Format: One of the reasons why PDF was developed is the changing format of Microsoft Word and other word processors when sent from one device to the other. In the past, this caused a lot of confusion and even tended to make a business person look unprofessional. The introduction of PDF alleviates this problem, assuring the same content and form when sent from one device to another device.
Security and Privacy: Data and information are the backbones of a business—a business can even collapse if its information is stolen. As a result, companies should carefully protect their documents. One of the ways to protect a file is by using a password—which can be accomplished through PDF software. It is advisable to convert confidential business documents to PDF so that they can be password protected.
Small Cyber Footprint: Some businesses manage thousands of documents daily. This means processing several gigabytes of files and they need to be done quickly. Using PDF allows for the reduction in the size of documents, making sharing faster and easier. This can be accomplished by converting files to PDF format, saving time and storage space.
Compatibility: One of the problems that should be considered when trying to send documents is compatibility between the sender and the receiver. Some documents require a specific Operating System or application before they can be viewed or opened. Without this compatibility, business relationships may be frustrated—and contracts might even have to be cancelled. With PDF conversion capabilities, these types of frustrating business interactions can be avoided. This is because PDF can adapt to any device, be it mobile or computer, without any compatibility problems.
Inclusion of Rich Media: One of the most exciting features of PDF is the ability to include images, hyperlinks and other visually appealing features within the file. With the help of a PDF conversion service, you can have a high-quality file that includes attractive and important images. In terms of versatility and flexibility, PDF stands out compared to other formats.
What to Look Out for in a PDF Conversion Program
No matter what you want to use the PDF file for, look for a PDF conversion service that fits your purposes. Consider the following:
Usability: An excellent PDF Converter tool must be easy to use, efficient and user-friendly with a clean interface.
Editing Features: This feature will allow you to add digital signatures on the text, as well as offering the ability to edit or redact information as it changes. The Life Wire discussed some important notes on how to add signature on any doc.
Optical Character Recognition Compatibility: A program with OCR compatibility is definitely beneficial for many businesses as it creates an editable PDF file from a scanned document. This feature provides the opportunity to change the details of the text throughout the life cycle of the document.
Access Management: A PDF software should allow you to password protect your document in order to regulate the people who are able to edit, view or print it.
PDF capability is crucial if you want your business to run smoothly without stumbling over document sharing challenges. A highly-functional PDF conversion program or service should meet your business conveniently and without any headache. In determining which service you need, several factors need to be considered, including usability, access management and more. When possible, choose the program or service that comes as close as possible to meeting your business needs, without compromising on quality. Even if you need to spend a bit more, in the long run, you will certainly be glad you did.