Why Use XPS Instead of PDF?

When it comes to document formats, most people are familiar with PDF (Portable Document Format), which has been a standard for many years. However, there’s another format called XPS (XML Paper Specification) that’s worth considering in certain situations. In this post, we’ll discuss some of the benefits of using XPS instead of PDF.

What is XPS?

XPS is a document format developed by Microsoft and standardized by Ecma International. Like PDF, it’s designed to preserve the layout and formatting of a document across different devices and platforms. XPS files can include text, graphics, images, and other types of content, and they can be digitally signed and encrypted for added security.

Benefits of Using XPS

  1. Integration with Windows: XPS is natively supported in Windows operating systems, which can make it a convenient choice for users who primarily use Windows devices. This means you can easily view and print XPS files without the need for additional software.
  2. High-Quality Printing: XPS files are designed to preserve the original document’s layout and formatting, which can make them a better choice for high-quality printing. This is because XPS uses vector graphics, which are resolution-independent and can be scaled up or down without losing quality.
  3. Greater Color Fidelity: XPS supports a wider range of color spaces than PDF, which can be important for users who need to work with high-quality images or graphics. This means you can reproduce colors more accurately in an XPS document than in a PDF.
  4. Advanced Document Security: XPS files support digital signatures and encryption, which can make them a good choice for sensitive or confidential documents. You can use XPS to create documents that comply with various regulations and standards, such as HIPAA and GDPR.
  5. Smaller File Sizes: XPS files can be smaller than PDFs for certain types of documents, which can be beneficial for sharing files over networks or the internet. This is because XPS files use a compressed XML format that can be more efficient than PDF’s binary format.
  6. Interoperability with Microsoft Office: XPS files can be created directly from Microsoft Office applications like Word and Excel, which can make it easy to generate XPS versions of documents without the need for additional software.
  7. Standardized Format: XPS is an open format standardized by the Ecma International organization, which can make it a good choice for long-term archiving or preservation. This means you can be confident that XPS files will be readable and usable in the future, even as technology evolves.
  8. Consistent Rendering Across Devices: XPS files are designed to look the same on any device or operating system that supports the format, which can be important for ensuring consistent visual appearance. This means you don’t have to worry about your document looking different depending on where it’s viewed.
  9. Support for Multimedia: XPS supports multimedia content like audio and video, which can make it a good choice for certain types of documents like presentations or interactive ebooks. This means you can create engaging, interactive content that’s more than just text and images.
  10. Easier Editing: XPS files can be edited more easily than PDFs using certain tools, which can be helpful for users who need to make frequent changes to their documents. This means you can make updates and revisions to your document without having to recreate it from scratch.

How to Convert PDF to XPS

If you have a PDF document that you’d like to convert to XPS, you can use a software like the one offered by Free PDF Solutions. Their software is free to use and can convert your PDF to XPS quickly and easily. Alternatively, if you need to convert other types of documents to XPS, you can try Free Converting, which is an online converter that can handle a wide variety of document formats.


In summary, XPS is a document format that offers several benefits over PDF, including integration with Windows, high-quality printing, advanced document security, and interoperability with Microsoft Office. XPS also supports multimedia content and can be edited more easily than PDFs. If you’re looking for a document format that can provide these benefits, XPS might be worth considering.

To learn more about XPS, you can visit the Open XML Paper Specification page on Wikipedia. If you’re looking for more information about Microsoft, you can visit their website at microsoft.com.