Splitting your PDF files into separate smaller files can often be beneficial, and there are numerous ways of going about this. However, with the Adobe products getting far out of the reach of the average user with their pricing policies, we have seen several online options appear to fill the void, the question is, are they any good and can they reliably replace a desktop application for working with PDF documents? We have a look at some of the best online PDF splittersand see if they offer a viable alternative.
PDFelement Pro – The Best PDF Splitter
When it comes to desktop options, PDFelement Pro has everything you could want. This desktop PDF splitting software can make the work of splitting PDF very easy. With a wealth of features that cover the splitting and merging of PDF documents, but it also includes a full complement of editing features including the ability to create, convert and even add watermarks to your PDF files.
Top 3 Best Online PDF Splitter
1. PDF Split!
PDF Split! is an easy-to-navigate site, there is just a single page, with a lot of blank space (depending on your screen size) and one basic user interface in the middle. From here you can upload from your computer by either dragging a file onto the marked box for automatic upload or through a more traditional browser menu to choose a file. In addition, you can import PDFs directly from your Dropbox or Google Drive accounts. Once the file is chosen by whatever method, you can then split into chunks by assigned page ranges or 1 page per piece. You then simply press split and the file will be ingested into the system, and the split files downloaded back to your system automatically. You can customize the file naming but that is really the limit of the options here.
2. Split PDF
This website takes a slightly different take, presenting a clean white site with a big “Drop PDF Here” box where you can simply drag your PDF files to start the process. In addition there is a small box underneath that allows you to open a standard file browser to choose your files if you prefer that method. Underneath here we find a well laid out, if basic, instruction area, that explains the splitting process in easy-to-follow steps. Dragging a file onto the box (or using the file browser) uploads your PDF file, and presents it to you in its individual pages. You then simply click on the pages you want to be split off, holding down shift to select multiple pages, and click “Split PDF” to initiate the operation. The resulting file is then downloaded back to you.
3. I Love PDF
This one is a very minimalist design, with just a large red “Select PDF File”, although there is a link to a separate help page with a short user guide. Clicking the red button opens a standard file browser for whatever platform you are working from, and you simply browse to the required file and select it. The file is then uploaded automatically. One uploaded, you can then choose the page ranges you want to be split off, click to start the operation, and the completed files are downloaded to your system once finished.
The Limitations of Splitting PDF Documents Online
Whilst all three can accomplish the task, there are several reasons why online may not be the best solution.
Firstly, there are restrictions on file size for all of these services, and in many cases using them will simply not be an option, however there are other reasons for thinking twice about going down this online service route. If you are dealing with confidential files, uploading them to the cloud can be troublesome in the long run, this is not to suggest that any of these services would endanger your privacy of course, more than the simple process of uploading your files to the internet adds an element of uncertainty that you would perhaps prefer to avoid. Finally, whilst they function well at what is offered, all three are very basic in terms of options and a desktop solution is perhaps a better alternative.