Signing and sending PDFs via email is always a pain, especially if you think you need to print it, sign it, scan it, and email it back to someone in a timely manner. But you don’t! Using a few apps and built-in software, you can save time, money, and the agony of finding and printing from the correct office printer.
Image credit: Sebastien Wiertz/Flickr
iOS: Use Markup Tools for Signatures
In the past, you needed a third-party PDF annotation app to add signatures to documents on iOS. Now, the operating system has capable built-in markup tools that let you edit pictures and documents by adding your handwritten signature (in addition to annotations, text and shapes). Using your iOS device to create your signature will also allow you to sync it across all your Macs running iCloud Drive.
- Open your PDF and select the Share tool.
- Select Save to Files.
- Open the Markup tool.
- Select the + and select Signature.
- Select Add or Remove Signature and hit + to add your signature using your finger.
- Hit Done to save your signature, then arrange it within your PDF.
Tapping your signature will let you drag it around the page and adjust its size. To scroll through your document without leaving accidental lines all over your page, use two fingers to navigate the page. If you’re dealing with the PDF inside Apple’s Mail app, you can sign it and send it back to your contact without opening Files or leaving the app.
macOS: Use Preview (or the Trackpad)
Adding a signature from your Mac is pretty simple: You can use either your trackpad or import your actual handwritten signature using your computer’s front-facing camera. You’ll need to use Apple’s Preview app, and a sheet of paper if you’re concerned with accuracy. If you’ve already added a signature on your Mac, and enabled iCloud Drive, you’ll be able to use that signature inside Apple’s Markup tool on your iOS device.
- Open your PDF using Apple’s Preview app.
- Click the Toolbox icon, then the Signature icon.
- Select Create Signature.
- With the trackpad, select “Click Here to Begin” and draw your signature. Press any key to finish drawing, then select Done or Clear to save or redo your signature.
- With the front-facing camera, write your signature in black ink on a sheet of white paper.
- Hold your signature in front of the camera until it recognises and imports your signature (be sure to keep it on or above the blue line). Select done to save the imported signature.
- Pick your signature, then drag and scale it appropriately in your PDF.
Windows 10: Use Acrobat Reader DC
Windows 10 users will need a third-party app to get their documents signed. The easiest one is Adobe’s Acrobat Reader DC. You can use its free Fill & Sign feature to add and import signatures to PDFs. (Unlike Apple’s multiple signature support, Adobe Acrobat Reader DC only lets you store one signature and one initial.)
- Open your PDF with Adobe Acrobat Reader DC.
- On the right-hand side, select Fill & Sign.
- Select Sign in the Fill & Sign menu.
- Choose Add Signature or Add Initials.
- You can use a typed version of your signature (you can choose from four handwritten fonts), draw it with your trackpad, or import your signature from a photo. If you’re on a Surface device, you can use your Surface Pen to write your signature in the field.
Android: Use Adobe’s Fill & Sign App
Android users should download the Adobe Fill & Sign app from the Play Store. In addition to adding signatures, the Fill & Sign app lets you add saved personal information, add text to empty fields in the PDF, and add checkmarks or X’s to checkboxes.
- Select your PDF and open using Adobe Fill & Sign.
- Select the fountain pen icon to create a signature or initials.
- Use your finger to draw your signature above the blue line.
- Tap the fountain pen again and select your signature.
- Drag and scale your signature.
- Select the share icon to save or share your PDF.