Scanning documents used to be a chore, but smartphones have made it a relatively easy task. However, there are scanner apps out there that can do much more than just scan a few random documents here and there.
These apps use your phone’s camera and usually combine some form of AR technology with unique features. Some of them can help you solve math problems, translate languages, or help out while you’re doing laundry. Here are some of our favorites:
1. Laundry lens
Laundry Lens is a great companion to have on your iPhone while doing laundry. The concept is simple. Simply point your phone’s camera at the laundry labels on your clothes and you’ll get proper instructions for washing (or drying) those clothes.
You can also manually check out the laundry symbols by swiping up to match them with the symbols on the label. This app contains a complete list of all symbols that indicate how to wash, dry, iron and bleach your clothes. No more guessing what all the symbols on your clothing care labels mean.
download: Laundry lens (free)
Highlighted is an app that helps you remember important highlights from every book you read. Save highlighted text from your favorite books to your iPhone. Simply open the app, point your camera at the text you want to highlight, and drag your finger across the screen to select the text you want to save.
You can add custom tags and notes to these highlights and share them directly from the app. Apart from that, you can manually add books or scan ISBNs. This allows you to organize different notes and highlights for each book.
download: highlights (free)
3. cam scanner
CamScanner is one of the best scanner apps for smartphones. It makes scanning, saving and sharing documents so much easier. Scan any document and instantly convert it to a PDF, JPG, Word, or TXT file.
With this app, you can scan multiple documents at once and combine them all into one neat PDF. Perfect for scanning ID cards, passports, QR codes, vouchers and more. CamScanner also includes filters to make the text you just scanned easier to read. It’s also a great way to store digital copies of all your important documents.
download: CamScanner (free, in-app purchases available)
If you are struggling with your math homework as a student, Photomath is one of the apps that can help you solve your math problems. This app uses your iPhone’s camera to scan math problems from your notebook and provide solutions.
Instead of just providing a solution, I’ll walk you through all the steps and also explain the concepts that go into solving that problem. The app also features a detailed library of guides and explanations on various topics.
With animations, verbal explanations, and visual solutions, it covers all the basics. As such, it is a must-have for students of all ages.
download: Photomath (free, subscription available)
5. Google Translate
You already know Google Translate, and you know how to use it. However, if you’re traveling to another country and are having trouble reading the signs, you can open the app and translate it into English (or your language of choice).with a tap camera Press a button to quickly scan text from almost any surface.
The app quickly detects languages and translates without prompts, requiring minimal typing. It’s also a great app if you’re trying to learn a new language. Google Translate is a great example of the application of AR in our daily lives.
download: Google Translate (Free)
Do you have old analog films? If so, Filmory is an iOS app that can help you scan, store and share those negative photos. This is an AI-powered tool that can detect and crop analog film and display the real image in high quality. Once the scan is complete, the images are immediately saved to your album.
However, scanning these images requires a backlight source. Luckily, this app gives him a site that acts as one on your computer screen. Simply hold the film vertically in front of the backlight source, press a button, scan, and see the results. You can also apply filters to edit the image after scanning.
download: Filmory (free, subscription available)
7. Zoho Expenses
Zoho Expense is a deeper spending tracking app that goes beyond just tracking your monthly budget. First, scan your receipts on the go with Receipt Scanner to automatically record those expenses. The app then provides detailed reports on each purchase so you can keep up with previous expenses.
You can also create business travel itineraries, connect personal or corporate credit cards, and track all transactions sent or received through those cards. Plus, you can record cashing and apply it to expense reports. Finally, Zia, her AI assistant on the app, provides quick insights and suggestions on all personal and business spending.
download: Zoho Expense (Free, with subscription)
Automate your daily tasks with these scanner apps
It’s interesting how simple yet effective most of these apps are. Once you start using them, it’s hard to put them back, considering how much simple tasks can be automated. It’s something you do regularly, and these apps make it just a little easier.
iPhone users can take advantage of a built-in feature called Live Text. With this feature, you can point your camera at any type of text, copy it, and paste it into any supported app. It’s similar to Google Lens in many ways and worth checking out, especially if your device is running iOS 16 or later.