How to Scan Documents on iPhone or iPad?

How to Scan Documents on iPhone or iPad?

Many iPhone users are unaware of the ability to scan documents right on their phones. It’s a helpful tool for storing important documents digitally, sending them off in an email, or saving them as a PDF file.

This article covers the basics of iPhone scanning before diving into more advanced features.

iPhone Scanning Basics

Before jumping into the more advanced features of scanning documents on iPhones, let’s cover the basics.

To start, you’ll need a few items:

  • An iPhone with iOS 11 or later
  • A third-party scanner app (examples include Scanner Pro and Adobe Scan)
  • The document you wish to scan

In addition to the standard camera app that comes pre-installed on iPhones, you can use third-party scanning apps to scan documents. The most popular apps for iPhone document scanning include Scanner Pro and Adobe Scan.

Once you’ve downloaded the scanner app of your choice, open it up and select “Scan Document” (or a similar option). Make sure the document is in a well-lit area and that it’s as flat as possible. Pressing your finger on the display will help you avoid glare or shadows.

The scanner app should automatically detect the edges of your document and crop the image to size. You can then adjust the brightness, contrast, rotation, and color before saving the scan as a PDF or JPEG.

Advanced Features

Now that you’ve got the basics down, let’s explore some of the more advanced features available with scanner apps.

One helpful feature is named “Optical Character Recognition” (OCR). This allows you to scan a specific document and convert it into searchable, selectable, and editable text.

Many apps also offer cloud storage integration for saving your scans. Popular services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and iCloud can be used to store documents in the cloud for easy access, no matter where you are.

Finally, many apps also offer the ability to share scans via email, text message, or social media. This is an easy way to quickly send off important documents without having to manually upload them.

Document Scanning Apps for iPhone

Popular Document Scanning Apps for iPhone

Adobe Scan

One of the most well-known apps for scanning documents on iPhone is Adobe Scan. It’s a powerful tool that offers features such as automatic document detection, image optimization, and OCR. It also integrates with a majority of the Adobe Creative Cloud suite applications for further editing capabilities.

Scanner Pro

Another popular scanner app for iPhone is Scanner Pro. This powerful tool allows you to scan documents quickly and easily, featuring features such as automatic document detection, image optimization, and OCR. It also offers cloud storage integration for easy access to your scans anywhere.

Evernote Scannable

For those looking for a more lightweight solution, Evernote Scannable may be a perfect choice. It offers the same features as Scanner Pro and Adobe Scan, but it’s a bit simpler to use. It also integrates with Evernote for further editing capabilities.

Microsoft Office Lens

Another great option is Microsoft Office Lens. This scanner app is great for those looking to scan documents quickly on the go. It integrates with OneDrive for cloud storage and offers features such as automatic document detection and image optimization.


Finally, SwiftScan is also a great option for scanning documents on iPhone. It boasts features such as automatic document detection, image optimization, and OCR. Plus, it offers cloud storage integration for easy access to your scans.

Using iPhone to Scan Documents

If you don’t want to obtain a third-party app, you can always use the built-in Notes app. To start, open the Notes app and select “Create Note.”

Tap on the camera icon at the bottom of the touchscreen and point it toward the document you want to scan. The app will automatically find the edges of the document, crop it to size, and then save it as a PDF.

Remember these helpful facts for using iPhone software to scan documents

  • Start by downloading a third-party scanner app
  • Make sure the document is in a well-lit area
  • Adjust brightness, contrast, rotation, and color before saving
  • Look for Optical Character Recognition (OCR)
  • Integrate with cloud storage services
  • Share scans via email, text message, or social media
  • Use the built-in Notes app to scan documents if needed.

Helpful Troubleshooting Tips

If you have trouble scanning documents with your iPhone, here are a few tips to help:

Check iOS Version

One of the first things users should do is check if their iPhone is running the latest version of iOS. Apps such as Scanner Pro and Adobe Scan require at least iOS 11 for full compatibility.

Ensure Camera Access

Another issue users may encounter is if their scanner app does not have access to their cameras. To resolve this, go to Settings > Privacy > Camera and ensure the scanner app has permission to use your camera.

Check for Updates

If you’re still having issues with a scanner app after resolving the iOS version and camera access issues, make sure you’re running the newest version of the app by checking for updates in the App Store.

Check Lighting & Angle

Always make sure that the document you’re scanning is in an area with ample lighting and that it’s held at the correct angle. This will help ensure that the scanner app is able to accurately detect the edges of the document.

Check Scanner Settings

Finally, make sure to adjust your scanner settings as needed. Most apps allow you to adjust brightness, contrast, rotation, and color before saving your scan.

Use iCloud Account

If you’re having trouble accessing your scans, you may need to sign in with your iCloud account. This will allow you to access your scans and ensure they are saved to the correct cloud storage service.

Older Model iPhones: Tips and Solutions

If your iPhone is running an old version of iOS, your Notes app may not have the ability to scan documents. You can still use a third-party scanning app, such as Adobe Scan or Scanner Pro.

In addition, if you’re having trouble with an older model iPhone, make sure to check that it is compatible with the scanning app you’ve downloaded. This will ensure that the app is able to detect the edges of your document correctly.

These are some additional tips for older iPhone users:

  • Make sure your iPhone has the latest version of iOS installed (at least iOS 11)
  • Remember security settings may block some apps
  • Check which version of the scanning app your model supports
  • Consider using an external scanner if needed
  • Use another Apple device, like an iPad, for scanning if available.

What to do if Your iPhone Camera is Nonfunctioning?

If your iPhone camera is nonfunctional, you may be able to use an external scanner or another Apple device with a working camera. If that’s not an option, consider using a service like Google Docs OCR to convert images into text-based documents.

The camera is the main component of any scanning app, so be sure to troubleshoot your device. If that doesn’t work, consider using another Apple device to try and capture your document. One of the most vital steps is to take the time to find a scanning solution that works for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Does my iPhone need a scanner app?

A: While some newer iPhones come with built-in document scanning capabilities, older iPhones may require a separate scanning app.

Q: How do I access my scans?

A: Your scanned documents should be saved to the cloud storage service you integrated your scanner app with. You can locate this storage service within the settings of your scanner app.

Q: What is Google Docs OCR?

A: Google Docs Optical Character Recognition (OCR) is a tool that can convert images into text-based documents. This feature can help you access scanned documents if your iPhone camera is not working properly.

Q: What is the best scanner app for iPhone?

A: The best scanner app for iPhone will depend on your needs. Popular options include Adobe Scan, Microsoft Office Lens, and SwiftScan. These all have different features that may suit your needs.

Q: What are some tips for scanning documents on iPhone?

A: Make sure to check your iPhone’s version of iOS and camera access settings, update the scanner app if necessary, adjust the lighting and angle of the document you’re scanning, customize scanner settings, and sign in with an iCloud account to access saved scans. For older model iPhones, consider using an external scanner or other Apple device.

Final Thoughts

Scanning documents with an iPhone is a great way to save time and energy. With the right app and the correct settings, you’ll be able to quickly scan any document in just a few clicks.

Finally, remember that you can always use a third-party app for further editing abilities.

Now that you know how to scan documents onto iPhone with ease, go ahead and give it a try! Document scanning is a useful tool for sharing, archiving, and organizing information quickly and easily. You can also use it to create digital copies of important documents for future reference. Good luck

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