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iBooks: Viewing, syncing, saving, and printing PDFs on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

With iBooks for iOS and iTunes 10.1 or later, you can view, sync, save, and print PDFs on your compatible iOS device. You can also view PDF email attachments or PDFs from Safari in iBooks.

iBooks 3.2 or later requires iOS 7 or later on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. If you can't install iOS 7 on your device, follow these steps.

Opening PDFs with iBooks

You can open PDF documents, such as a PDF attached to an email, with iBooks:

  1. When you view a PDF email attachment, tap the Share button in the upper-right corner.
  2. Tap Open in iBooks to open the attachment. iBooks will open, and you can view your PDF.

When you use iBooks to open a PDF, iBooks will automatically save a copy of the PDF to your iBooks PDF shelf. These PDFs will sync to your iTunes Book library the next time you sync your device with iTunes.

Syncing and saving PDFs

To add PDFs to your iTunes library on your computer, drag and drop the PDF into your iTunes Book library. If you're using OS X Mavericks, drag and drop your PDFs into your iBooks library using iBooks for Mac.

To sync a PDF to iBooks on your device:

  1. Select your iOS device. (Learn more about syncing your data with iTunes.)
  2. Click the Books tab.
  3. Select Sync Books.
  4. If iTunes is set to sync only selected books, select the checkbox next to the PDF you want to sync.
  5. Click Sync.

You can use iTunes to back up your PDF files so they will restore to your iOS device after you update or restore your software or transfer information to a different device. If you use iTunes 11 or later to sync your PDF files to iBooks on your iOS device, a backup of your PDF will be automatically created. A copy of the PDF will be added to your iTunes Books library, or iBooks library if you're using OS X Mavericks.

Printing PDFs in iBooks

To print your PDFs or notes in iBooks, follow these steps:

  1. When viewing your PDF, tap the Share button in the top menu bar.
  2. Tap Print.
  3. Select a printer, page range, and number of copies.

Learn more about AirPrint.

Using Sync Collections with PDFs in iBooks

If you turned on Sync Collections, iBooks will keep your PDFs (and non–iBooks Store books) in the same collections across all your iOS devices and Mac (if you're using OS X Mavericks). For example, if you have the same PDF on all your devices, when you move that PDF to your Sci-Fi collection in iBooks on your iPhone, that PDF will appear in your Sci-Fi collection the next time you open iBooks on your iPad.

If you delete a PDF (or non–iBooks Store book) while you have Sync Collections turned on, it only affects the copy on the device. For example, if you delete a copy of the PDF from your iPad, it will still be on your iPhone.

For more information about iBooks and the iBooks Store, see the frequently asked questions and how to sync iTunes Digital Booklets to your iOS device.

Last Modified: Nov 14, 2013
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  • Last Modified: Nov 14, 2013
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