I recently went to reinstall adobe acrobat pdf reader, I found it now requires permissions for identity and ability to create accounts - I'm sure they weren't there last time I installed it.

I just want to read pdfs. They don't need accounts for that.

Is there a way to block it (I'm on lollipop, 5.1); or is there a less intrusive alternative?

I'm not keen on sideloading an older version from a random website.

  • 1
    Try PDF Viewer from pspdfkit. Very good alternative. Not sure if it works on 5.1. – user218076 Jun 26 '18 at 12:13
  • @user218076 Thanks, it works on 5.1. Doesn't require those permissions. They say app collects no Personal Data pspdfkit.com/legal/privacy and it works offline (though it seemed to wait in the background before I also cut off internet access for it). Seems pretty full featured, though some UI things to get used to (e.g. very little momentum when swipe-scroll; seems no "goto page number"). A plus is nicer bookmark/annotation management (and allows annotation even when document forbids it). – hyperpallium Jun 27 '18 at 4:40
  • I posted this as an answer. Please accept the answer. Their is no goto page support. you can scroll on the bottom quickly through pages or click on the grid icon (last icon to the right). Annotation management is pretty ok. Maybe read through the help docs included. – user218076 Jun 27 '18 at 19:17

You can try PDF Viewer from pspdfkit. Google Play Link. The company makes the reader which is used in a couple of popular apps like Box, Dropbox, Evernote, Scribd, etc... It works with Android 5.1, and requires minimal permissions.

This app has access to:


read the contents of your USB storage
modify or delete the contents of your USB storage


read the contents of your USB storage
modify or delete the contents of your USB storage


receive data from Internet
view network connections
full network access
run at startup
prevent device from sleeping

You can block the network permissions if you like. It is only used in their instant feature which allows more than one people to comment at the same time.

It supports Annotations and bookmarks, Has a Manager for the annotations which looks like a Open Book icon on the header.

Page scrolling can be set as per the settings in the Gear Icon. Additionally you can delete pages or export some pages as a separate document.

  • I disabled this app's access to mobile and wifi data, but somehow it is still listed each day in traffic usage ranking as using data... I also stopped it several times (and confirmed from manage apps that it is stopped), but soon found it running again, without me starting it... – hyperpallium Jul 1 '18 at 6:41

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