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How To Shrink A PDF’s File Size

PDFs are a convenient and widely used file format, but they can be big and take up valuable storage space. Additionally, large files can take a long time to upload, download or share, which may be frustrating for both the sender and the recipient. That's where the need to shrink a PDF’s file size comes in. Shrinking its size involves compressing the PDF, thereby reducing its ‘weight’ without sacrificing quality.


One of the main benefits of shrinking a PDF’s size is that it allows you to share or upload files much faster. This is vital if you frequently send or receive large files at work or school. Shrinking PDFs can also help you save valuable storage space on your computer or mobile device. With limited storage capacity on many devices, every megabyte counts. It can also improve the overall efficiency of your device, speeding it up.

Several methods to shrink PDFs include using online tools or software programs. So, whether you are using a PC, Mac, or mobile device, shrinking a PDF’s size is a straightforward process that can save you time and hassle in the long run. Let's have a closer look at it.

How To Shrink A PDF’s File Size

While you can't reduce a PDF’s file size directly, various apps can help you. And one such option is FormatPDF's "Compress PDF” tool. The steps to shrink a file using the tool mentioned are as follows:

  1. Go to https://www.formatpdf.com/en/compress-pdf/
  2. At the top of the page, you will see a big red button that reads "Select the PDF". Click on it and choose the file you need to compress. Alternatively, you can drop the file onto the space which says "Or Drag And Drop The PDF Here."
  3. It will then automatically upload your file onto the tool. Once uploaded, you’ll see three compression options on the right side of your screen. These three options are:
    1. Maximum compression.
    2. Recommended compression.
    3. Low compression.
  4. After choosing the required option, your file size will shrink. Save it by clicking on the "Download PDF" option that you’ll find at the bottom of your screen.


What You Need To Know About Shrinking A PDF’s File Size

When it comes to shrinking the size of a file, there are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure that the quality of the document is not compromised:

  • Before you start compressing the file, remove any unnecessary elements that aren’t needed in the document, such as images, text, or graphics.
  • No doubt, there are various tools available to compress files. However, choosing a reliable and reputable app is essential to ensure that the document's quality is not compromised during compression.
  • Most compression software tools allow you to choose the compression level. Choosing the right compression level is essential, as too much compression can result in a loss of readability.
  • Once you’ve compressed the file, check it to ensure that the document's quality is not compromised. Check if the images and text are still readable and clear.
  • Before compressing the file, back up the original to avoid any data loss or quality. If the compressed file is not of the desired quality, you can always return to the original and try a different compression method.

Which Programs Allow You To Shrink PDF File Size

As much as we rely on the internet for almost every aspect of our lives, it's sometimes unavailable. So, it's essential to look for alternatives that let you shrink your files. Luckily, there are a few options available depending on the device you use to carry out the task and its operating system.

Shrink A PDF’s File Size From A PC

Computers have more processing power and memory than smartphones or tablets, making them the best devices for shrinking a PDF’s size. This allows for faster compression of large files. Fortunately, there are abundant ways to do it. This section will explore how to shrink files on your PC using various methods.

Windows 10 And Prior Versions Of Windows

Foxit Reader, Adobe Acrobat Reader DC, and Compact PDF Reader are just a few PDF readers accessible for Windows 10 and earlier versions. In particular, Adobe Acrobat Reader DC is an efficient tool for reducing file size. Your document needs to be open in Adobe Acrobat and compressed there.


You’re in luck if you want to shrink the size of your files on Mac. That's because Mac devices come with a built-in program called "Preview", which can help you quickly reduce your file's size. All you need is open the file that you want to compress. Alternatively, you can also use our online tool or Adobe Acrobat.


Linux is compatible with several tools to reduce PDFs’ file size, such as PDFunite or PDFsam, which let you shrink, join, or convert files to other formats. That's true even though Linux is an operating system with free license programs. As an alternative, you can even use Linux commands to get your task done.

Shrink PDF File Size On A Smartphone Or Tablet

Even though when we talk about shrinking a file, computers are the best devices, there are times when you might have to compress a PDF on a mobile. The good news is there are a lot of apps that can help you out.


One of the most well-known operating systems in the world, Android works with a wide variety of programs and apps. Enter "reduce PDF" in the Google Play Store to access an extended range of choices, including Adobe Acrobat Reader and WPS Office. However, remember that some of these apps may need a subscription plan for them to work.

iPhone (iOS) Or iPad

There’s a misconception that compressing files on iOS is difficult when, in reality, it’s very similar to doing so on Android. iOS doesn't have any in-built applications for these situations. However, you can write "reduce PDF" in the Apple Store and accomplish the same. Just download any app of your choice.

Husain has been around the internet ever since the dial-up days and loves writing about everything across the technosphere. He loves taking tech apart and see what makes them tick, without necessarily putting it all back together.
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