PDF has indisputable advantages:
1. This is a cross-platform standard. This means you see a document exactly as it was created, regardless of what platform it was created on.
2. PDF files can be hardware-independent. This means a file can be printed on a cheap dot matrix printer as well as on a high-end publishing plotter.
3. PDF files are compact. PDF supports many data compression algorithms.
4. PDF files can contain multimedia elements, such as: graphics, video and audio files, hot links, 3D-models.
5. PDF documents can be protected. An author of a PDF file may set up several security options. It is possible to lock the file so, that it would open only after entering a correct password. It is also possible to forbid editing or printing the file.
PDF also has its drawbacks:
1. PDF is a patented proprietary format owned by Adobe.
2. PDF attempts to become an all-purpose standard, and that lowers its effectiveness comparing with specialized solutions. You can use PDF in Internet, but HTML files are much more efficient. You can use PDF to exchange graphics, but most of publishing applications work with TIFF and EPS.
3. PDF is intended to visualizing documents. It often doesn't preserve their logical structure.
4. PDF files are hard to modify. It is often extremely difficult or even impossible to add a text block or an image to an existing PDF file.