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iPad: The fact that I can't save PDF files from safari is a deal breaker

post #1 of 53
Thread Starter 
I learned the other day at the Apple store that I can't save PDF files from safari. My work requires the reading of PDF files (academic journals). Why does a tablet, which is perfect for reading text, not support the saving of PDf files? To be clear, I know I can read pdf files in safari, but I cannot save them to the home screen. The fact that I can save a link is moronic. Links to journals don't work. You have to save the file. What's wrong with apple? Why can't you save (at least certain) content using safari? Apple really screwed up on this one. No professional academic will buy an iPad without this feature (at least not for work).

For those of you who bought an iPad, enjoy your oversized iPhone.

I'll stick to my MacBook Pro.

Algol
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post #2 of 53
There are several apps that do this. It would be nice, though,if you could do it directly from safari, especially with the (slightly) better handling of files in the iPad. I'm an academic, and that isn't my problem- the limitations on the iWork suite for iPad, in particular the loss of some parts of an original Mac iWork file are my main problem with using this thing for work.
post #3 of 53
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

There are several apps that do this. It would be nice, though,if you could do it directly from safari, especially with the (slightly) better handling of files in the iPad. I'm an academic, and that isn't my problem- the limitations on the iWork suite for iPad, in particular the loss of some parts of an original Mac iWork file are my main problem with using this thing for work.

I realize there are third party apps that allow me to view and save PDFs. This isn't sufficient. I want to be able to save the content from the web, without having to transfer them from my other computer. I want to be able to browse through databases on my iPad and download PDFs to read. The sad thing is that apple could add this functionality easily. I think it was just an oversight.

I take it from your handle that you're a philosopher. I'm a graduate student in Philosophy. I'm currently working on my dissertation. So, you can see why reading pdf content is important to me.

Sorry if my tone sounds harsh. I'm just so pissed at apple.
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post #4 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

... in particular the loss of some parts of an original Mac iWork file are my main problem with using this thing for work.

What parts? I haven't even figured how to get an iWork file onto the iPad. What am I missing?
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post #5 of 53
Algol - there are also apps that use the built in webkit to act as a browser and then let you save from within it. I haven't used them so I don't want to recommend any but you can find them with a search on the app store.

Dr M - the big thing for me is that you lose presenter notes when you import keynote, but you also apparently lose some other things like footnotes in Pages. That doesn't affect me but others have been complaining about it. I can understand that the ipad versions don't do everything the full computer can do, but If it doesn't retain everything you put into it on the Mac, then you can't transfer back and forth.

You can get iWork Mac docs into iWork iPad via iTunes. When the iPad is plugged in go to the apps tab and you can import from there. Or you could email them, etc.

BTW, typing on this thing is SO much nicer than on an iPhone. Not as good as a regular keyboard to be sure, but pretty damn good. It really is the size rather than the virtual keyboard that is the issue when typing on the iPhone, IMO.
post #6 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Algol View Post

I learned the other day at the Apple store that I can't save PDF files from safari. My work requires the reading of PDF files (academic journals). Why does a tablet, which is perfect for reading text, not support the saving of PDf files? To be clear, I know I can read pdf files in safari, but I cannot save them to the home screen. The fact that I can save a link is moronic. Links to journals don't work. You have to save the file. What's wrong with apple? Why can't you save (at least certain) content using safari? Apple really screwed up on this one. No professional academic will buy an iPad without this feature (at least not for work).

For those of you who bought an iPad, enjoy your oversized iPhone.

I'll stick to my MacBook Pro.

Algol

Apple thinks file systems are too complex for the average person.
post #7 of 53
I found the transfer method, in iTunes under the Apps tab, down at the bottom. I expected a separate tab. It works, but some improvement is needed here.

I tried a couple of Pages documents and Keynote presentations. Both had formatting and font problems. I'd sure like to see some way to add fonts to the iPad.
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post #8 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

What parts? I haven't even figured how to get an iWork file onto the iPad. What am I missing?

I would say a filesystem manager but I think we reached the conclusion only geeks wanted a filesystem manager to be allowed to sort out the issues with it and feel good about themselves. Instead what Apple seems to have provided is the Magical File Transfer Solution:

http://gizmodo.com/5508935/ipad-test...-your-computer

No geeks required. Now is that easier or far more complicated than being able to put an SD card in the iMac, copy a file over, slot it into the adaptor on the iPad and import direct from it? Heck if it had a built-in SD slot, you could even work on the file without import/export/import all the time.

The filesystem manager would let you save PDFs too. Not a full-blown Finder of course, just something like the photo app for documents that aren't images, music, movies etc. and it would list them like the iPod part lists songs, sort by name, type, size etc.

Finder Mini or iFinder.
post #9 of 53
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

I would say a filesystem manager but I think we reached the conclusion only geeks wanted a filesystem manager to be allowed to sort out the issues with it and feel good about themselves. Instead what Apple seems to have provided is the Magical File Transfer Solution:

http://gizmodo.com/5508935/ipad-test...-your-computer

No geeks required. Now is that easier or far more complicated than being able to put an SD card in the iMac, copy a file over, slot it into the adaptor on the iPad and import direct from it? Heck if it had a built-in SD slot, you could even work on the file without import/export/import all the time.

The filesystem manager would let you save PDFs too. Not a full-blown Finder of course, just something like the photo app for documents that aren't images, music, movies etc. and it would list them like the iPod part lists songs, sort by name, type, size etc.

Finder Mini or iFinder.

You make a good point Marvin. My girlfriend asked an Apple store employee whether she could attach her flash drive to the iPad. When the employee said she had to connect it to the computer to transfer content, she said "that sounds really complicated." Folks, there is a reason why most Operating Systems have filesystem management. It makes life easier.

The iPad is a content viewing devise. If you cannot manage your content you can't (practically speaking) view it. Therefore, the iPad needs a filesystem manager.
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post #10 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

I would say a filesystem manager but I think we reached the conclusion only geeks wanted a filesystem manager to be allowed to sort out the issues with it and feel good about themselves. Instead what Apple seems to have provided is the Magical File Transfer Solution:

http://gizmodo.com/5508935/ipad-test...-your-computer

No geeks required. Now is that easier or far more complicated than being able to put an SD card in the iMac, copy a file over, slot it into the adaptor on the iPad and import direct from it? Heck if it had a built-in SD slot, you could even work on the file without import/export/import all the time.

The filesystem manager would let you save PDFs too. Not a full-blown Finder of course, just something like the photo app for documents that aren't images, music, movies etc. and it would list them like the iPod part lists songs, sort by name, type, size etc.

Finder Mini or iFinder.

Who uses an SD card for file transfer?

It's pretty obvious that they need better file management. I'd like to be able to just dump whatever files I want onto the iPad - wired or wirelessly - and then let the ipad sort out which apps can read which files. I think that where things are going, even it's not there yet.
post #11 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

Who uses an SD card for file transfer?

It's pretty obvious that they need better file management. I'd like to be able to just dump whatever files I want onto the iPad - wired or wirelessly - and then let the ipad sort out which apps can read which files. I think that where things are going, even it's not there yet.

I agree. I suspect this process will be improved with 4.0. Many of us have apparently forgotten the relative primitiveness of iPhone 1.0.
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post #12 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Algol View Post

I learned the other day at the Apple store that I can't save PDF files from safari. My work requires the reading of PDF files (academic journals). Why does a tablet, which is perfect for reading text, not support the saving of PDf files? To be clear, I know I can read pdf files in safari, but I cannot save them to the home screen. The fact that I can save a link is moronic. Links to journals don't work. You have to save the file. What's wrong with apple? Why can't you save (at least certain) content using safari? Apple really screwed up on this one. No professional academic will buy an iPad without this feature (at least not for work).

For those of you who bought an iPad, enjoy your oversized iPhone.

I'll stick to my MacBook Pro.

Algol


I require to use a lot of PDF file for scientific journals and I was thinking of using the iPad for it. I wasnt sure it could be done until I saw a video in youtube about an app that lets you view pdf files. I'm still not certain if pdf files can be saved tho.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lwij_hmg4_c
post #13 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

Who uses an SD card for file transfer?

Photographers. Images are files too essentially. Flash drives are most common but iPad already has an SD connector kit and USB SD readers are common and sometimes come in packs with SD cards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

It's pretty obvious that they need better file management. I'd like to be able to just dump whatever files I want onto the iPad - wired or wirelessly - and then let the ipad sort out which apps can read which files. I think that where things are going, even it's not there yet.

Dump the files into what though? They have to go somewhere on the iPad in one of two locations: either an application dependent or independent space. If it's specific to one app then it's hard to open one file in multiple apps. If the files are shared, the files alone should be managed so you can free up space without using a computer.

Plus, it would be better if you could send the files from the iPad (wireless preferred as you mention) rather than using the computer for both sending and receiving.

Most people are familiar with the concept of what a document is. When you open the iPod app or a photo browser, you are already using a file manager (perhaps filesystem manager is less accurate in this case as grouping doesn't have to be included). What I'm suggesting is the same type of manager but for non-media files.

If you want to save a file from a website, it goes there. If you want to drop Word files or Excel spreadsheets, they go there too. Even if the external source has a filesystem, it doesn't need to show it. It can display a flat list of files like Spotlight would. It's really just a 2 column app and move files left or right. Copying to the destination would go into a standard directory such as iPad/PDF/file1.pdf and could be read/copied in itunes if preferred.
post #14 of 53
This free online service will convert web pages (and other things) to PDF and email a download link to you.

http://www.expresspdf.com/


Sure there are others.
post #15 of 53
The location and functionality of the file transfer stuff in iTunes, combined with the iPad's timing vis-a-vis OS4, makes me think that a far more robust solution will be provided.

For my part, I think mobileme's iDisk is going to get a major overhaul, and become tightly linked to the iPad's ecosystem so it'll serve as the defacto file system. Apple may have to make the hooks into such a system widely available via API so that competing solutions (dropbox, etc.) can effectively compete....we'll see.

On the whole my issue is not getting docs onto the iPad or into the iWork apps, it's getting documents back out, and into a decent file repository. Not a fan of the giant flat file for all docs.
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post #16 of 53
Download "downloader", open app, download PDF.

Not that tough.
post #17 of 53
I can understand the frustration with saving from Safari on the iPad. I'm an academic that needs access to PDFs, but I've found a reasonable solution. A little app called Goodreader solved my problems (only $0.99). It accesses dropbox, google docs, and has a nice PDF reader. The integration with Safari is deceptively easy. Get to the PDF page and just insert a "g" before the "http" and it downloads the PDF and you can easily upload it to a networked computer or the cloud. Today I've downloaded many files from PubMed and NIH Commons with no problems on my iPad. I'm sure there are other solutions out there as well, but this little app moves my iPad much closer to an everyday mobile replacement for hauling around my MacBook. I have no affiliation with the Goodreader company, just a very satisfied user.
post #18 of 53
I think this link may be a solution to saving PDFs found in iPad safari.

http://www.gilsmethod.com/how-to-sav...b-on-your-ipad
post #19 of 53
Here is another goodreader technique

How do I save a file from Safari to GoodReader?
If you browse the Web with Safari, and open a file that is interesting to you, there is a way of saving this file into GoodReader's internal local storage, so you will be able to view this file with GoodReader without loading it from the Internet every time (like it happens in Safari).

To save a file from Safari to GoodReader:

open the file of interest in Safari
tap Safari's address bar (the keyboard will appear)
go to the very beginning of the file's URL address, where the http:// or https:// part is
add a single letter g in front of the address, so you'll have ghttp:// or ghttps:// instead of http:// or https://
press Go on the keyboard (this will close Safari and start GoodReader)
the file will start to download into GoodReader automatically (check Web Downloads section to find it)
if for some reason adding g doesn't work, try to add gr or giw, so you'll have grhttp://, grhttps://, giwhttp:// or giwhttps://
Please note, that this technique doesn't always work with secure servers. If it doesn't, then try browsing for this file in GoodReader's built-in web-browser, rather than in Safari.
post #20 of 53
^^ great app, good reader!
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post #21 of 53
You guys just don't seem to get it. It is NEITHER that Apple can not put a file system manager into iPad NOR Apple can NOT put some interfaces such as SD card reader to make your life less complicated. It is about money!

Apple intentionally disabled these functions. So you have to use iTune. So you have to PAY MONEY to Apple for contents. Why Apple does NOT support Flash on iPad? So you can NOT watch a clip free via a browser. If you want to watch a movie, you must pay for it! This is their business model.

BTW, did you ever wonder why you could not change battery on your iPhone or iPod yourself? Did Apple think you were that stupid, not even capable of changing a simple battery? No, Apple did this because they want to sell you a new piece of hardware every two years! Just about the time your battery run out of juice, you would found that it is way too expensive to keep running your old hardware than getting the new hardware.

So is this model working? It worked extremely well for Apple! Apple made tons. Is this model wasting resources? Absolutely! Just think about all the hardware you had to throw away! And just think about all the environment problems related to manufacturing your next GREAT Apple CREATION!

I eat apple, not use one.
post #22 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by iEatApple View Post

So you have to PAY MONEY to Apple for contents.

No you don't. You can buy a CD and rip it with iTunes and transfer it to the iPhone. Apple don't sell CDs, so in that case you haven't paid Apple for content. You can buy a DVD and rip it with VLC+Handbrake with suitable iPhone settings, and transfer it to the iPhone. Apple don't sell DVDs so in that case you haven't paid Apple for content. You can buy a Blu-ray disk and rip it with MakeMKV, then convert with handbrake to suitable iPhone settings, and transfer it to the iPhone. Apple don't sell Blu-rays so in that case you haven't paid Apple for content.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iEatApple View Post

Why Apple does NOT support Flash on iPad? So you can NOT watch a clip free via a browser.

Obviously you haven't heard that

a.) The hardware-accelerated version of Flash for mobile devices isn't even available yet, even if Apple did want to put it in the iPhone.
b.) The iPhone has a YouTube app for watching YouTube content.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iEatApple View Post

If you want to watch a movie, you must pay for it!

The bastards won't help you to steal? Damn them!

Quote:
Originally Posted by iEatApple View Post

BTW, did you ever wonder why you could not change battery on your iPhone or iPod yourself?

You can change the battery yourself. The reason it's difficult is to minimise the size of the device without sacrificing battery capacity. To have a removable battery, either the iPhone would stay the same size and the battery would have to be smaller, or the battery would stay the same size and the iPhone would have to be bigger.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iEatApple View Post

Is this model wasting resources? Absolutely! Just think about all the hardware you had to throw away!

They don't throw stuff away. They reuse and recycle. I believe the iPhones with dead batteries are sent to a central processing plant to be refurbished, including having their batteries replaced.


Quote:
Originally Posted by iEatApple View Post

And just think about all the environment problems related to manufacturing your next GREAT Apple CREATION!

I eat apple, not use one.

And what of the environmental impact of the computer you used to access AppleInsider? Did you think about that?
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post #23 of 53
The real lesson to be learned is that SJ should be taken at his word when he says that the iPad sits between a smartphone and a laptop, and is not intended to replace either. Most of the complaints that start with what the iPad won't do, are trying too hard to prove that the iPad is not a Macbook replacement. Well, save yourself some trouble; it isn't. I have a Macbook Pro. My iPad will keep my notebook in the bag more often than before, but it cannot fully replace it. I understood that when I bought the iPad. This is one of those RTFM situations. Please stop complaining that the iPad is not a notebook replacement. Guess what; it is also not a toaster. Get over it!
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post #24 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac Voyer View Post

The real lesson to be learned is that SJ should be taken at his word when he says that the iPad sits between a smartphone and a laptop, and is not intended to replace either. Most of the complaints that start with what the iPad won't do, are trying too hard to prove that the iPad is not a Macbook replacement. Well, save yourself some trouble; it isn't. I have a Macbook Pro. My iPad will keep my notebook in the bag more often than before, but it cannot fully replace it. I understood that when I bought the iPad. This is one of those RTFM situations. Please stop complaining that the iPad is not a notebook replacement. Guess what; it is also not a toaster. Get over it!

All the OP is trying to do, is save a PDF in a web browser...should it really be that difficult?

While uses that Goodreader app works well enough, C&Ping PDF links sounds like a PITA, especially since it's quite easy to save dozens of articles while doing research.

Maybe with OS 4.0, Apple will just add a save file option in Safari...
post #25 of 53
Well, that's just stupid. You shouldn't need workarounds or other apps to make something so basic work. Any file that the OS can open and display, it should be able to save off the web through the browser and drag-and-drop transfer from a computer.
post #26 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow View Post

Well, that's just stupid. You shouldn't need workarounds or other apps to make something so basic work. Any file that the OS can open and display, it should be able to save off the web through the browser and drag-and-drop transfer from a computer.

this isn't a computer. people don't get the paradigm switch.
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post #27 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandau View Post

this isn't a computer. people don't get the paradigm switch.

Wow, by your logic, that makes my Pre Plus a computer, because it can save and launch PDFs from its browser (altough technically, it is since it has CPU/GPU, RAM, storage, an OS, and allows user I/O, all of which the iPad has too).

Still doesn't explain away why a $500+ device can't do something a mundane as save a PDF in web browser. Must be that magical Apple experience I don't always understand.
post #28 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandau View Post

this isn't a computer. people don't get the paradigm switch.

That's the same excuse I hear everytime something obvious is missing. MMS? Who uses that? Cut and Paste? It isn't a computer. Multitasking? It can't be done without being a clusterfuck! That is, until Apple decides to grace us with its presence and it suddenly becomes the best thing ever.
post #29 of 53
The iPad is a "computer" on the basis of the actual definition of the word. Just because it doesn't do every single thing every person thinks a computer ought to do, doesn't make it something other than a computer. It also doesn't make it automatically deficient. If you don't accept the limitations, then by all means, do not buy it.
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post #30 of 53
I just made a test and was able to saved several pdf files with Offline Pages. It looks like this app is able to read and saved pdf from the web

edit: I just saved a complex 174 pages guide in pdf format from the western digital website. So this works perfectly.
post #31 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by iEatApple View Post

...
Apple intentionally disabled these functions. So you have to use iTune. So you have to PAY MONEY to Apple for contents. Why Apple does NOT support Flash on iPad? So you can NOT watch a clip free via a browser. If you want to watch a movie, you must pay for it! This is their business model.
.

for crying out loud get a clue... how about ABC app, Yahoo app, Netflix app, youtube app, Hulu app, ... you dont have to buy from itune at all.

and you can convert pretty much any video with handbrake (free), tag the file with identify2 (shareware), then drag it in itunes for sync with any mobile device or appletv.
post #32 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

Dump the files into what though? They have to go somewhere on the iPad in one of two locations: either an application dependent or independent space. If it's specific to one app then it's hard to open one file in multiple apps. If the files are shared, the files alone should be managed so you can free up space without using a computer.

Opening the PDF in iBooks, then synching my iPhone to my MBP, works for me. (I realize iBooks wasn't around at the time you posted this.)

I'm thinking to get an iPad, and put lots of PDFs in iTunes, and synching them over, (reverse process); as I need offline access to the PDFs. (Yes, I know, I can pay more to AT&T and always be online. I already have an iPhone since they first came out.)

Sunny Guy
post #33 of 53
Actually I am not an Iphone man and never have had an Iphone. When the Ipad came out, I wanted to give Apple products a try. I bought a 3G+Wifi 64G one and started to play with it. Playing means, to setup, to try what can I do with this thing and how to combine this tool into my working equipments.

As Result, you can not. Just to name a few:
Safary won't let you save any webcontents to have it offline later, was one of the greatest annoyance. PDF must be downloaded and opened in an separate App and also save there.
No general file management. Library is only good friend with Itunes. So PDF files have to be downloaded first into a Desktop or Laptop and then transferred to Ipad.
So what is the sense to have on travel Laptop and also Ipad with you?

Ok, Ipad for entertainment.
No Flash, no mpgs, no rmbv only to because Apple wants their own formats and also control over the "freedom" of all Apple User (and of course their money spend on apps and media). you can convert the medias into apple formats, but if you have a collection and library of 200 movies and shows.....

After jailbreaking the Ipad, some of the used to use formats are available again, but with restrictions and unconveniences.

All in all, a dissapointment and an annoyance. I gave the 3 month purchased Ipad to my 4years old son to play and I am going to buy maybe the coming blackberry pad or the galaxy. At least they know what users like me need.
post #34 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saiber View Post

Ok, Ipad for entertainment.
No Flash, no mpgs, no rmbv only to because Apple wants their own formats and also control over the "freedom" of all Apple User (and of course their money spend on apps and media). you can convert the medias into apple formats, but if you have a collection and library of 200 movies and shows.....

The reason you have the movies in the formats you have chosen is because other companies want you to store them in their formats. The formats Apple supports are not 'Apple formats' but open standard formats, which support hardware-accelerated decoding.

Mpg1 and 2 are legacy formats with limitations. They are stored as multiplexed video and audio which makes them tricky to edit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Saiber View Post

All in all, a dissapointment and an annoyance. I gave the 3 month purchased Ipad to my 4years old son to play and I am going to buy maybe the coming blackberry pad or the galaxy. At least they know what users like me need.

Sure they do. The Playbook SDK is based on Adobe Air:

http://devblog.blackberry.com/2010/1...playbook-apps/

So you will see a raft of sluggish apps with jittery scrolling. Check out the unresponsive pinch-zoom in the video above.

3D support in Air will come in 2011 with Molehill but for now it will be a mix of different SDKs:

http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/flash/molehill/

Dual 1GHz CPUs is good but they still can't make the interface smooth even with that performance.

The playbook screen is also 7" and likely not an IPS panel and lower resolution than the first iPad.

They also have a pre-approval App Store so apps that violate licenses won't be allowed into the store. Their developer community will be much smaller as Blackberry isn't known to target consumers.

It won't affect the iPad market at all.
post #35 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Algol View Post

I learned the other day at the Apple store that I can't save PDF files from safari.
I'll stick to my MacBook Pro.

Algol

Open PDF in Safari.
Tap top of screen.
Press Open in iBooks (or select any PDF reading app).

Deal breaker broken.

C.
post #36 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carniphage View Post

Open PDF in Safari.
Tap top of screen.
Press Open in iBooks (or select any PDF reading app).

Deal breaker broken.

C.

You'll notice that this was posted in April.

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post #37 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

You'll notice that this was posted in April.

You'll notice it also addresses Saiber's first complaint written yesterday which resurrected this dead thread

"As Result, you can not. Just to name a few:
Safary won't let you save any webcontents to have it offline later, was one of the greatest annoyance. PDF must be downloaded and opened in an separate App and also save there."
post #38 of 53
You can always just get a 11" MacBook Air and be able to do anything you like.
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post #39 of 53
this is really very very disgusting...I tried some applications but none of them was able to do a simple thing like saving so I can read it offline...specially PDF's ......
post #40 of 53
You can try downloading GoodReader. When you click a PDF file in Safari then, it will ask if you want to download it to GoodReader. Download the file into it and you can open it and look at it anytime you like.
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