MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

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MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby Ecthelion » Thu Mar 18, 2010 8:48 pm

Hi everybody,

I'd like to present to you MobilePDFReader, a free offline PDF reader for Android-based devices. It should display most PDFs, but - since it does not yet implement every aspect of the PDF specification - sometimes the documents will not be displayed 100% accurately. If you find documents that don't work, please drop me a message, ideally with the document in question being attached for debugging. Here are two screenshots of the app:

Image Image

The application is available in a free, ad-supported version, and a full version that does not cost much and removes the ads. Both have the same feature set and differ only in the ads being displayed in the free version.

Have fun with the app!

Image
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Postby Ecthelion » Fri Mar 19, 2010 5:01 pm

This morning I released a new version, v.1.1.1, of MobilePDFViewer which offers these changes:
-better PDF compatibility,
-again support also for Android 1.5-based devices.
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Postby powell » Fri Mar 19, 2010 6:47 pm

Nice looking application, it is always good to have PDF reader with you on your phone.
To my surprise, there are not so many good PDF readers around.

I have installed your application, I got some errors while viewing my PDF's (java.lang.OutOfMemoryError: bitmap size exceeds VM budget, several times Force Close). I can download a LogCat for you, if you are unable to reproduce this error yourself.

My comments are:
1. Nice graphics in file browser,
2. Icons in the document could be bigger/more clear,
3. For next/previous page you could use fling gesture - more convenient than small icons on the bottom,
4. There is one feature that I would give you a million dollars for... (just kidding :P). A would like to have bookmarks in the PDF viewer! If I read a technical document, very often I need to mark several pages and then easily switch between them. Please, please, please, give me bookmarks :)
5. Are you familiar with PDF Viewer from HTC Corporation? It is included in the original firmware with HTC Sense for HTC Magic device, at least in my region. This program has a very interesting mode of document displaying. It is called reflow view. In this mode, text is "flowing" on screen, you can zoom in the text, fonts are getting bigger, but lines are wrapped and are always as long as width of your screen. It is very comfortable to read such texts, you could consider to implement this in your program.

Keep working on it and good luck.
Last edited by powell on Fri Mar 19, 2010 10:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Ecthelion » Fri Mar 19, 2010 9:04 pm

powell wrote:Nice looking application, it is always good to have PDF reader with you on your phone.
To my surprise, there are not so many good PDF readers around.

I have installed your application, I got some errors while viewing my PDF's (java.lang.OutOfMemoryError: bitmap size exceeds VM budget, several times Force Close). I can download a LogCat for you, you are unable to reproduce this error yourself.

First, thanks for the feedback. And yes, I could use a LogCat for tracking down the problems. That would be very helpful.
My comments are:
1. Nice graphics in file browser,

:)
2. Icons in the document could be bigger/more clear,

OK, I'll have a look. It's difficult, though, to have the layout fit nicely for the different screen sizes.
3. For next/previous page you could use fling gesture - more convenient than small icons on the bottom,

Interesting suggestion. I'll have to take a look at how to detect such gestures. You don't by chance know a thread here at anddev about such gesture detection?
4. There is one feature that I would give you a million dollars for... (just kidding :P). A would like to have bookmarks in the PDF viewer! If I read a technical document, very often I need to mark several pages and then easily switch between them. Please, please, please, give me bookmarks :)

Any kind of suggestion how to create a UI for handling such bookmarks? Or perhaps a desktop PDF viewer that has a good bookmark handling?
5. Are you familiar with PDF Viewer from HTC Corporation? It is included in the original firmware with HTC Sense for HTC Magic device, at least in my region. This program has a very interesting mode of document displaying. It is called reflow view. In this mode, text is "flowing" on screen, you can zoom in the text, fonts are getting bigger, but lines are wrapped and are always as long as width of your screen. It is very comfortable to read such texts, you could consider to implement this in your program.

I had thought about such a feature, but this is probably something utterly different from the current implementation. How about placement of images in such text? Or how about pages with two columns of text, do such pages look fine in that mode?
Keep working on it and good luck.

Thanks
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Postby powell » Fri Mar 19, 2010 11:22 pm

I sent you PM with LogCat.

When it comes to the bookmarks - unfortunately, Adobe has not realized yet, that it is BASIC functionality, which would prevent many people from printing documents on a paper. I have no idea why they are so shortsighted. I have desktop application (which is not Adobe Reader of course) that supports bookmarks, but it will not help you with the Android implementation anyway.

Fling gesture is detected with onFling() function, see documentation of SimpleOnGestureListener class .
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Postby Ecthelion » Sun Mar 21, 2010 11:04 am

powell wrote:I sent you PM with LogCat.

Thanks. Taking a look at the output, most of the warnings were exceptions where an image from the PDF could not be decoded. This is true for some formats, e.g. DCTDecode, and, until I add an implementation for these formats, I think it makes the most sense to simply suppress these messages. The good news is that these are not severe errors but only some information cannot be displayed.

Concerning the OutOfMemoryErrors there is unfortunately no stack trace information. It would be good to see where these come from. Do you also get these errors if you disable rendering of pages in the background in the settings dialog?
When it comes to the bookmarks - unfortunately, Adobe has not realized yet, that it is BASIC functionality, which would prevent many people from printing documents on a paper. I have no idea why they are so shortsighted. I have desktop application (which is not Adobe Reader of course) that supports bookmarks, but it will not help you with the Android implementation anyway.

Still, what I would need is some kind of specification about how you could imagine to have the feature implemented. At the moment I am not so sure what it is that you really need.
Fling gesture is detected with onFling() function, see documentation of SimpleOnGestureListener class .

Thanks, I'll have a look.
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Postby missme » Wed Apr 14, 2010 7:28 am

Ecthelion wrote:This morning I released a new version, v.1.1.1, of MobilePDFViewer which offers these changes:
-better PDF compatibility,
-again support also for Android 1.5-based devices.

Your app is very good,can I study this app;thank you!
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Postby Ecthelion » Wed May 05, 2010 1:47 pm

Ecthelion wrote:
powell wrote:5. Are you familiar with PDF Viewer from HTC Corporation? It is included in the original firmware with HTC Sense for HTC Magic device, at least in my region. This program has a very interesting mode of document displaying. It is called reflow view. In this mode, text is "flowing" on screen, you can zoom in the text, fonts are getting bigger, but lines are wrapped and are always as long as width of your screen. It is very comfortable to read such texts, you could consider to implement this in your program.

I had thought about such a feature, but this is probably something utterly different from the current implementation. How about placement of images in such text? Or how about pages with two columns of text, do such pages look fine in that mode?

The recent version 1.2 of MobilePDFViewer has such a mode. You can invoke it from the main menu via the "Text-only mode" menu item. Please note that the mode is considered experimental at the moment. E.g. text containing two columns is not handled well.
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Re: MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby desolat » Thu May 20, 2010 11:15 pm

Tried you v1.3. Some remarks: The Text-only mode should keep its zoom when changing the pages. And please provide a setting to disable that (sorry: awful) sound. Btw. is it correct that your application remembers the last viewed page of a document? Seems to be a really useful but rather underestimated feature!

Thx for the great app.
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Re: MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby Ecthelion » Sat May 22, 2010 10:07 pm

Thanks for the feedback.

For MobilePDFViewer v1.3.1 I tried to fix the problem that the zoom was not kept when changing pages in the text-only view. For disabling the page flip sound I am going to add a setting, but for the v1.3.1 release, which I will probably have ready by tomorrow, the time was too short. Therefore I simply lowered the volume for now, hoping that this helps a bit until a setting to disable it is ready. Please tell me whether any of these fixes did not work (or perhaps even make things worse).

It is correct that the app tries to remember the last viewed page of a document. It also saves the mode (text-only / text + images).

Cheers
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Re: MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby Ecthelion » Tue Jun 15, 2010 10:34 am

FYI, the latest release v1.3.3 of MobilePDFViewer adds a setting to disable the page flip sound. Additionally the default volume level for playing that sound is now much lower.
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Re: MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby desolat » Wed Sep 15, 2010 9:19 pm

Hi, two problems I noticed in MobilePDFViewer:

1) I have a document where the "f"'s get mostly not shown. Get it from here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/29435784/SHAD ... ionage-2-0

2) The page flip by swipe and the moving of the page do not really harmonize. It often happen that you accidentially flip a page when moving a page around.

Anyway, keep up the work!
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Re: MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby Ecthelion » Thu Sep 16, 2010 8:58 am

desolat wrote:Hi, two problems I noticed in MobilePDFViewer:

1) I have a document where the "f"'s get mostly not shown. Get it from here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/29435784/SHAD ... ionage-2-0

Thanks, I'll have a look.
2) The page flip by swipe and the moving of the page do not really harmonize. It often happen that you accidentially flip a page when moving a page around.

Anyway, keep up the work!

OK, I'll see whether perhaps an increase of the swipe range will help. Or perhaps I'll add a setting for activating the swipe functionality and have it deactivated by default.
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Re: MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby Ecthelion » Fri Sep 24, 2010 9:00 pm

I just released a new version where I increased the swipe range plus it's now necessary to swipe faster to cause the page flip. On my device this works just fine. Feedback is appreciated.

P.S.: And I did not yet dig into the problems with the PDF you linked to.
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Re: MobilePDFViewer, a free offline PDF viewer for Android

Postby Ecthelion » Wed Oct 06, 2010 3:49 pm

Hi,

meanwhile I took a look at the document at http://www.scribd.com/doc/29435784/SHAD ... ionage-2-0 (although I had to load the actual PDF elsewhere). From flipping through the first three or four pages I could not see any lost "f"s. Is this only on certain pages? Can you give examples?

Thanks
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