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Mobile Devices for Study & Research: Annotate

Tips on using mobile devices for study

Annotating readings

PDF annotator apps are a good investment should you wish to highlight and make notes on the document.

The following are just a sample of the many annotation apps available.

Image by Steve Mueller



  • Supported Platforms iOS
  • Cost $5
  • Transfer files/sync Directly from browser or email; sync with cloud storage, USB or WiFi
  • Annotate tools Yes
  • Manages files in app Yes
  • Other features Connect photos, protect files, link to files with URL, bookmark tab, page navigation, key word search in document
  • Website GoodReader website



  • Supported Platforms iOS, Android
  • Cost $9.99
  • Transfer files/sync Sync with cloud storage
  • Annotate tools Yes
  • Manages files in app Yes
  • Other features Annotate Word and PPT, add blank page in your PDF document for writing extensive notes, remove(delete) PDF pages, share annotated (edit notes), flattened(no edit notes) or original documents, edit toolbar.
  • Website iAnnotate website


  1. Some annotation features may not work on all PDF documents.
    If the PDF is scanned, rather than "born digital" you may only be able to use basic tools. This will apply to most eReserve material.
  2. Not all apps will export the annotations. 
    Look for this feature if you need to share your annotations and mark ups with others, or wish to access them from your computer.
  3. Do you need to read and annotate Word or other Office documents?
    Some annotation apps can open these document types, or you might need to save them as a pdf first.

Annotations apps

Annotation apps to read, highlight and markup documents.

GoodReader website

iAnnotate website

Reference Management Services

iOS devices only:

EndNote iPad

 Mendeley (iPhone or iPad)

EndNote and Mendeley apps both allow you to highlight and add notes to your readings, but currently are only available for iOS devices.