How To Scan Documents Using Your iPhone, iPad

Scanners offer the best way to convert hard copies into digital images, but you can’t always carry your scanner with you, which is why you’ll see several scanning apps available for iOS. These apps can automatically detect document edges before capturing an image of the document, straightening it out, and adjusting its colors to make it look more like the work of a dedicated scanner.

Of course, if you rarely find the need to scan documents on the go, you may feel it is unnecessary to install a whole new app on the off chance that you may eventually need it. It’s a good thing, then that Apple built the feature right into the Notes app with iOS 11. Your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch can now scan bills, forms, business cards, IDs, or other documents using all the same tricks as the aforementioned third-party apps. In what follows, we walk you through how to use the new feature.

1. Open the Notes app.

2. Open an existing note or create a new note by hitting the button in the bottom-right corner.

3. Tap the “+ button at the bottom of the screen and select Scan Documents from the menu that follows.

4. Point your device’s camera at the document you want to capture, moving it in as close as possible. The app will now attempt to automatically detect the document’s edges and capture a photo of whatever is within those edges.

If edge detection is taking too long, you can tap the capture button at the bottom of the viewfinder for a manual shot and adjust the edges of the document yourself.

5. You can continue adding more scans to the document in the same manner. The total count of your scans is displayed alongside the Save button at the bottom-right.

6. To edit individual scans, simply tap the preview thumbnail in the bottom-left corner of the screen, then swipe left or right across the middle to switch between scans. Using the options at the bottom, you can delete each scan, rotate it, adjust its edges, and select from four color modes for it, namely, Color, Grayscale, Black & White, and Photo.

7. Once you’re done adding and editing scans, hit the Save button at the bottom-right of the viewfinder. This will add a carousel of all your scans to the note, which can be dragged around freely.

8. You can scroll through all your scanned images within this carousel, or tap any image to view it in a fullscreen gallery. The same gallery will allow you to edit each scan in the document. More importantly, you can tap the share button in the top-right corner here to share the document via compatible apps, Create PDF, Markup, Save to Files, Print, and more.

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Sameed Khan

I write, game, design at times, and revel in sarcasm. You can find me on Twitter.