You can now edit PDFs directly from ChromeOS

A great new feature you will find on your Chromebook once you’ve updated to ChromeOS 104 is the ability to edit PDFs. Before the update, if you wanted to edit PDFs you would need to install an Android app, Linux app or use an online PDF editor.

The great news is you can now edit PDFs directly from your Chromebook. To do this, simply open the PDF file you want to edit on your Chromebook. You’ll then be presented with the document in the built-in ChromeOS image editor.

You’ll see the standard image editing tools options we’ve had access to for some time. You’ll also see further options for PDF files.

Editing PDF files

There are many reasons why you would want to edit PDF files. The need to edit PDF files has increased since the Covid pandemic because many people are still working from home. Also, when you apply for a new job many of the interviews are now done via video.

I found this out recently after applying for some new positions. All of the interviews were done via video and I was then sent my contract to sign via email. This created an immediate need to edit the contract, so I could sign it before returning it to my new employer.

This is just one example of why you would need to edit PDFs. There are many other reasons why you would want to edit PDF files.

Using online PDF editing tools

There are plenty of online PDF editing tools you can use and some of these work fine. However, the issue you have with these is that you need to upload your PDF files before you can edit them. This means uploading your files to servers owned by the provider offering the online PDF editing tool.

Although many of these providers do have a privacy policy, which states they do not use any files you upload. When you consider some of your PDF files may contain private information, it can be a little concerning, as you don’t know what will happen with the PDF file once you’ve done your edits.

Also, if you need to edit PDF files as part of your job. You may find your company has rules about sending their information to online services. This will definitely be the case if you work in financial services or you deal with data that is sensitive.

This is why I’m really happy about the ability we now have to edit PDF files locally. Editing PDF files directly from your Chromebook removes the risk of having to upload your PDF files to servers.

Editing PDFs on your Chromebook

There are a few editing tools you now have access to on your Chromebook. This includes being able to add text, highlight text and sign and date documents if you have a Stylus.

All of these tools are really useful. The highlight tool will allow you to easily review PDF documents and highlight areas that need further attention. This is great if you proofread PDF files as part of your job.

The most useful tool, which I’m sure many people will take advantage of is the ability to sign PDFs. Many PDF files we receive include contracts for jobs or to sign up to new utility companies. Being able to sign these documents directly from ChromeOS and sending them back by email; really helps with productivity.


It’s really great to see that we are seeing some excellent new features being released on ChromeOS. The ability to edit PDFs is something I’m sure many will want to take advantage of in the future.

There have been many new features on ChromeOS 104. This is just another great feature, which will help the Chromebook be the only laptop you need to own. Gone are the days when the Chromebook was seen as being limited in functionality. It’s now a fully-fledged OS, which is continuing to improve over time.