Compare and select from the list of top paid and free OCR Software for converting images or scanned paper documents into a document with editable text:
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software can convert scanned documents in an image format into editable documents. You can use this software to edit scanned documents using a PDF or word processing application.
Here we will review the best OCR software for computers. We have compared and highlighted the best features of each OCR app so that you can select the best one that meets your requirements.
What You Will Learn:
- Review of OCR Software for PC
- Frequently Asked Questions
- List of the Best OCR Software for PCs
Review of OCR Software for PC
The graph below shows the expected increase in OCR market size from 2021 to 2028:
Frequently Asked Questions
Q #1) What does OCR software do?
Answer: OCR is an abbreviation of Optical Character Recognition. This program recognizes text in a scanned image or document. You can use the application to convert images or scanned paper documents into a document with editable text.
Q #2) What is an OCR app used for?
Answer: It is used for automating the extraction of text from an image file or scanned document. The application converts images into machine-readable text documents that can be edited using a word processing document.
Q #3) What is the difference between an OCR and a scanner?
Answer: A scanner scans and saves a paper document into a digital image file. You cannot edit the text in a scanned image. An Optical Character Recognition app converts the digital image file into an editable document.
Q #4) Can OCR apps detect handwriting?
Answer: Most Optical Character Recognition applications can identify standard fonts in documents. They cannot recognize handwriting. You need a special app known as Handwriting OCR for identifying handwritten text in documents.
Q #5) Does Windows 10 have OCR Software?
Answer: Windows 10 has an in-built image tool that can process images with a small amount of text. If you want to scan an image with lots of text, you need to use dedicated OCR software.
List of the Best OCR Software for PCs
Here is a list of popular and free Optical Character Recognition tools:
- Simple OCR
- Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
- Easy Screen OCR
- Boxoft Free OCR
- ABBYY FineReader
- Free OCR to Word
Comparison of Top Optical Character Recognition Tools
|Tool Name||Best For||Platform||Price||Ratings|
|Filestack||Accurate and fast text extraction, among other file management features.||Any platform||Free|
Trial: Yes | 21 days
|Nanonets||Automating document data extraction workflows using OCR & machine learning.||Any platform||Starter: Free|
Pro: $499 per model per month
Enterprise: Custom pricing
|LightPDF||Converting images to PDF, excel or Word document for free.||Any platform||Free edition available, |
Personal Plan: $19.90/month and $59.90/annually
Business Plan: $79.95/year and $129.90/year
|OCRSpace||Convert scanned images or PDF files to editable Word documents online for free.||Any platform||Free|
|FreeOCR||OCR conversion of scanned images for free on Windows.||Windows||Free|
|OnlineOCR||Converting scanned images and PDF files online for free.||Any platform||Free|
|Simple OCR||Batch OCR conversion of scanned images on Windows.||Windows||Free|
|Adobe Acrobat Pro DC||Editing, digitizing and organizing PDF documents on any device.||Windows and Mac||Standard DC: $12.99 pm|
Pro DC: $14.99 pm
Trial: Yes | 7-day
Let us review the tools in detail below.
Best for accurate and fast text extraction, among other file management features.
Filestack is a file management service for file uploads, operations, and delivery. Its services include AI-based OCR for extracting both printed and handwritten text from files.
Filestack can handle passports, tax receipts, IDs, and virtually any other document. It also has high accuracy when identifying printed text.
- Convert from and to any popular file type
- Automation of features like OCR with Workflows
- Fast and reliable with its integrated CDN
- File handling features like image editing, document previews, and virus detection
Verdict: Aside from OCR, Filestack provides many other features, which can come in handy if you have other file management requirements. It also has diverse plans, including a free one, which is great for scaling.
- Start: $59/month
- Grow: $199/month
- Scale: $359/month
- Trial: Yes | 21 days
Best for automating document data extraction workflows using OCR & machine learning.
Nanonets is an AI-based OCR software that allows you to digitize data from any type of document. Capture and extract data from mortgage forms, tax forms, ID cards, invoices, payslips, and pretty much any document type with Nanonets.
Make manual data entry obsolete with. Nanonets help make documents/data inter-operable between businesses, ERPs, databases, and cloud storage services.
- Increase productivity by extracting just the data you need.
- Integrate with ERPs, databases & cloud storage services.
- Automate document processing workflows end-to-end.
- Free, low latency OCR API with unlimited requests.
Verdict: Nanonets is a robust OCR application software with impressive machine learning capabilities. It is ideal for businesses of any size that would like to automate document-heavy workflows. Nanonets has out-of-the-box solutions for a wide range of popular document types.
- Starter: Free
- Pro: $499 per model per month
- Enterprise: Custom pricing
- Trial: Yes | 7-day
Best for converting images to PDF, Excel, or Word document for free.
LightPDF is a free online tool that lets you convert images to PDF, Word, and Excel files. The OCR software has a simple user interface that makes it easy to digitize lots of scanned images within minutes.
- Convert scanned images to PDF, Word, and Excel files.
- Online conversion.
- High accuracy.
Verdict: LightPDF is a good OCR program that lets you convert scanned images to editable documents. The basic version will meet the needs of most users. But the advanced version is also affordable for most.
- Basic: Free
- Personal: $19.90 billed monthly, $59.90 billed annually.
- Business: $79.95 for 1 year, $129.90 for 2 years.
- Trial: Yes | 7-DAY
Best for converting scanned images or PDF files to editable Word documents online for free.
OCRSpace is the best OCR app for converting scanned images and PDFs to editable documents. You can upload the document or paste the URL to convert a document to editable files. The app will automatically detect orientation and auto-enlarge images if required.
- Online conversion of PDF, JPG, PNG, and WebP files.
- Receipt scanning.
- Supports 20+ languages.
Verdict: OCRSpace is a free online tool with lots of valuable features. You can use the app from any compatible browser on PC and mobile devices.
Best for Optical Character Recognition conversion of scanned images for free on Windows.
FreeOCR is a free tool that lets you convert JPG and other popular image formats into editable documents. The app includes the Tesseract OCR PDF engine that was developed by HP. The engine was the top three best performers in an OCR accuracy contest held by the University of Nevada.
- Export to MS Word.
- Support JPG and other popular image files.
- Twain support.
Verdict: FreeOCR is a simple and lightweight Optical Character Recognition program that you can use for free. This app includes an open-source engine that is continuously developed and maintained by Google.
Best for converting scanned images and PDF files online for free.
OnlineOCR is an online app that you can use to convert scanned images and PDF files into editable Word, Excel, or plain text formats. The free OCR app supports conversion of up to 15 pages per hour. You can register for free that unlocks advanced features such as multi-page PDF conversion.
- Extract text from images and PDF.
- Input from GIF, TIFF, BMP, and JPG formats.
- Output to Excel, Word, and Text files.
- Support 46+ languages.
Verdict: OnlineOCR is a simple and easy-to-use online OCR app. You can use it to convert scanned images and PDF files on any device.
#7) Simple OCR
Best for batch Optical Character Recognition conversion of scanned images on Windows.
Simple OCR as the name suggests is a simple app that you can use for the OCR conversion of scanned documents. The developer boasts 100 percent accuracy in converting scanned images to editable documents. The app can reduce speckles or dots in scanned images. It supports documents with non-standard fonts, multi-column layouts, and tables.
- Despeckle noisy documents.
- Format retention.
- Batch OCR in English and French languages.
- Save in TXT and RTF formats.
- Support multi-column layouts and tables.
Verdict: Simple OCR is a great free tool for converting scanned images to editable documents. However, the input and output formats supported by the app are limited that may not meet the requirements of most people.
Website: Simple OCR
#8) Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
Best for editing, digitizing, and organizing PDF documents on any device.
Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is a great PDF editing application. The software supports PDF creation and conversion, digital signature, batch processing, and OCR conversion. In addition, the app also supports collaboration features that help streamline the workflow.
- Create and convert PDFs.
- Share PDFs.
- Sign PDFs.
- OCR conversion.
Verdict: Acrobat Pro DC is a great PDF editing tool with an Optical Character Recognition feature. The price may be high but the features make it worth the cost.
- Adobe Acrobat Standard DC: $12.99 per month
- Adobe Acrobat Pro DC: $14.99 per month
- Trial: Yes | 7-day
Website: Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
Best for editing and converting PDF files on Windows and iOS.
PDFelement allows you to edit and organize PDF files on Windows. You can edit and create forms and other documents using the software. The app allows you to organize PDF documents on iOS devices as well.
- Edit PDF text, images on Windows, iPhone, and iPad.
- Create PDF forms.
- OCR for editable PDFs.
- Batch PDF processing.
Verdict: PDFelement is not a free tool, but the features make it worth the price. The app has a low learning curve that allows you to create and manage PDF documents.
- PDFelement Pro: $69.99 per year
- PDFelement Pro Bundle: $89.99 per year
#10) Easy Screen OCR
Best for converting scanned images and screenshots to text on mobile and PC devices.
Easy Screen OCR is another great OCR app that lets you extract text from scanned images and screenshots. You can use the app to extract text from websites in foreign languages and convert them using Google Translate or other apps. The app supports both PC and mobile platforms.
- Extract text from images.
- Google OCR mode.
- Cross-platform support (Android/iOS/Mac/Windows).
- Screen OCR feature.
- Supports multiple languages.
Verdict: Easy Screen OCR has a simple user interface that allows you to easily convert images to editable text. The price of the app is low as compared to other paid OCR apps.
- Life-time: $15
- Half-yearly: $29
- Yearly: $49
- Trial: Yes | 3-day
Website: Easy Screen OCR
#11) Boxoft Free OCR
Best for extracting text from all types of images for free.
Boxoft Free OCRapp lets you extract text from images. The app supports multiple languages, including German, Italian, French, Dutch, Basque, Portuguese, Spanish, and English. You can use the app to convert scanned documents into editable files.
- OCR text from custom pages.
- Recognize multiple languages.
- Edit OCR text.
- Save OCR text as ZIP or TXT.
- Custom page range.
Verdict: Boxoft Free OCR is an excellent tool for editing scanned images. The tool offers great value for money due to advanced features at affordable pricing.
- Basic: Free
- Pro: $27
Website: Boxoft Free OCR
Suggested Reading => Most Popular Machine Translation Software to Look For
#12) ABBYY FineReader
Best for creating an organized workflow with scanned and digital PDF documents.
ABBYY FineReader is one of the best OCR programs. The application has lots of features that allow you to streamline your workflow. It has a modern and easy-to-use interface that makes it easy to edit and organize documents.
- View, edit, and convert PDFs.
- Digitize scanned documents with OCR.
- Screenshot reader.
- Create PDF forums.
- Sign and protect PDFs.
Verdict: ABBYY FineReader is a great tool to work with scanned and digital documents. The OCR application offers great value for money. You only have to pay a one-time fee to use the app. The app includes productivity tools that save time in working and collaborating with documents.
- FineReader PDF for Mac: $129 one-time payment.
- FineReader PDF 15 Standard for Windows: $199 one-time payment.
- FineReader PDF Corporate for Windows: $299 one-time payment.
- Trial: Yes | 7-day
Website: ABBYY FineReader
#13) Free OCR to Word
Best for converting scanned images to MS Word for free.
Free OCR to Word does a great job of converting scanned images to MS Word documents. The app can convert a lot of different types of images containing text such as BMP, GIF, TIFF, JPG, and others to editable documents.
- Convert scanned PDF/images to MS Word documents.
- Digitize paper for sharing.
- Extract text from JPG, BMP, TIFF, EMF, ICO, PCD, TGA, and others.
- OCR accuracy of up to 98 percent.
Verdict: Free OCR to Word is the best free OCR program for converting scanned images to editable Word documents. The app scans edited documents with high accuracy.
Website: Free OCR to Word
Other Notable OCR Software
#14) Microsoft OneNote
Best for research, note-taking, and storing information for free.
Microsoft OneNote lets you store text and images in a document that you can easily share with others. You can take notes using a keyboard or draw your notes using a stylus. The app also supports basic OCR functionalities that convert pictures of text into editable text.
Website: Microsoft OneNote
#15) Amazon Textract
Best for extracting typed and handwritten text from scanned images.
Amazon Textract goes beyond basic Optical Character Recognition to recognize text. It uses machine learning to extract text from both scanned and handwritten documents. The tool can also extract tables from images without manual effort.
- Analyze Text API: $0.0015 per page ($0.0006 per page after 1 million pages)
- Analyze Document API for forms: $0.05 per page ($0.004 after 1 million pages)
- Analyze Document API for tables: $0.015 per page ($0.01 after 1 million pages)
- Analyze Expense API for invoices: $0.01 per page ($0.008 after 1 million pages)
Website: Amazon Textract
#16) Google Docs
Best for writing, editing, and collaborating for free.
Google Docs is an online word processing application. The app supports Optical Character Recognition, allowing you to edit scanned documents containing text. You can also open, edit, and convert MS Office and other document files for free.
Website: Google Docs
OCR Space and Online OCR are the best free online Optical Character Recognition programs. SimpleOCR is recommended for batch OCR of scanned images for free on Windows. These apps support multiple languages.
LightPDF OCR tool is ideal for converting images to PDF, Word, and Excel format. If you simply want to convert scanned images in any format to MS Word, try OCR to Word.
- Time taken to research this article: Writing and researching the blog took about 10 hours so that you can select one that meets your requirements.
- Total tools researched: 30
- Top tools shortlisted: 15