ePUB or PDF: Which One is Better to Choose?


7 minute read

eBooks have gained popularity these years in various formats, including ePub and PDF. The major features making these two formats effective are the portability and the flexibility offered. These file formats allow customization of eBooks and enable interactivity. PDFs are the oldest eBook formats. However, ePub became more popular than PDF. Let’s understand more.

What are PDFs and ePub?

PDF refers basically to a paper in an electronic format. It is fixed, static, and unchangeable. A PDF file cannot be customized and is not flexible. It's easy to share, distribute and use. It is still one of the most circulated digital document formats.

The electronic publication has existed for more than a decade after the Portable Document Format originated. The International Digital Publishing Forum developed the ePub format. Now it has become the standard format for digital publication. ePub is the most preferred type of file format for eBooks. PDFs are yet mostly used by people across the globe, but it does not meet the eBook publishers' requirement.

ePub or PDF formats

Main Features of ePub

  • XML-based file;
  • Re-flowable
  • The text size can be adjusted
  • A library for a quick scan

ePub vs PDF differences

  1. In terms of compatibility

    • Both these formats share equally high compatibility
    • These are the open file formats
    • It can be smoothly read on multiple devices and platforms.
  2. Reading Experience

    • Electronic publication performs much better than PDF in giving an amazing reading experience.
    • As the ePub file is reflowable, the text gets automatically adjusted to fit all the screen sizes
    • Helps in getting a comfortable reading experience.
    • Text in PDF is static and won't automatically optimize to fit different screens.
    • The reading experience is poor as you will have to zoom in for better viewing.
  3. Size of the files

    • Content that is in the ePub file is smaller in size than in PDF
    • Portable Document Format contains fonts that are embedded, a record of the locations and characters' direction
    • ePub is an HTML format that is stored in a zip file.
  4. Editing ease

    • An editor is required to edit both ePub or Portable Document Format files.
    • For electronic editing publication, a basic knowledge of HTML is required.
    • Projects in the ePub file are listed in a library, and the available palette allows for adjusting the style.
    • Portable Document Format editing is easy to start
    • There is a basic set of built-in editing tools, and there is no need for any programming knowledge.
  5. About the security

    • To secure your files, PDF has a password lock system.
    • However, there is password recovery software that can be used to remove the password.
    • That's the reason password lock might be ineffective in protecting files. In the case of electronic publication, there is DRM protection.
    • Users cannot share eBooks without permission. You will only have the right to allow people to read or access the content.
  6. Versatility

    A Portable Document Format file can An ePub file can
    • Search
    • Highlight and annotate
    • Fill form
    • Sign
    • Protect
    • Optimize size
    • Bookmark
    • Bookmark
    • Highlight
    • Annotate
    • Note
    • Search
    • Change fonts, text and background colors
  7. Interactivity

    • Both the file formats are interactive.
    • Allows users to get more engaged in reading
    • Electronic publication files can be created with rich interactivity; highlight and add notes, hyperlinking, animation, etc.
    • In the case of PDF, you can add hyperlinks to the website, hide and show content, embed audio and video, etc
  8. Printing

    • Portable Document Format is the best print out document composed of embedded fonts
    • It stores design in a way it can't be changed easily.
    • Print out of PDF looks the same as we review the digital copies
    • In the case of electronic publication, the layout changes when printing out.

Which format is better? ePub or PDF

Both the formats have their pros and cons. So understand those, you will need to pick the suitable format for your requirement.


Highly compatible Not flowable to fit screen
Looks professional Is large in size
Versatile Difficult to edit


Highly compatible Not suitable for printing
Comfortable reading experience
DRM protection
Is interactive

Advantages of ePUB over PDF

PDF is still used across different industries. Access and reliability are the major factors making it preferable. However, if you want a more interactive and user-friendly publication, ePub will be the best.

It has advantages that help create appealing content with interactivity, retention, and engagement. ePub files are accepted by kobo, apple, book, and other online retail outlets.

Reading PDF is like reading a hard copy as its format is restricted. It cannot be mixed with other media. ePub gives more control over the text content and provides a rich reading experience. It also provides greater security measures to protect your work published.


This argument for choosing between both formats will continue. Each format is practical as well as convenient in different aspects. If you are still having doubts, connect with us for professional ePub conversion services assistance.

We will give you a better understanding of all the things in detail. We have been serving clients from all over and have satisfied them with our digital conversion services.

Want to know more?