Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Microsoft Lens – a mobile scanner with support for digitization of printed and handwritten text


2 min read

The former Office Lens remains one of the easiest ways to turn your smartphone into a mobile scanner that can create PDF documents for free, but it will also come in handy when you want to digitize printed text and even in some cases handwritten text…

Microsoft Lens is now a well-known solution that turns mobile phones into practical scanners. It used to be better known as Office Lens, and some of its features can be used through the mobile version of Microsoft Office and other applications from the same ecosystem (eg Onenote).

This app is available on App Store and Play Store.

Still, there’s a standalone app that also offers some advanced features, and on some smartphones it’s actually pre-installed, so instead of having to be installed through the app store, it just needs to be enabled.


Similar to other applications of this type, Microsoft Lens is very easy to use. It offers support for about thirty languages, with the proviso that the recognition of handwritten text is enabled only for English. In essence, the application is used like a camera, so the desired documents or objects are photographed, and then processed.

Microsoft Lens Mobile Scanner

It offers several modes of operation, so it is possible to easily digitize the contents of writing boards typical of offices, documents and business cards. In addition, there are expanded capabilities or, as Microsoft called it, actions. This is where the possibility of digitizing printed or handwritten text will be used, then digitizing tables (21 languages ​​are supported), then the option of converting printed text into speech, extracting contact information and reading QR codes.

As far as classic document scanning is concerned, Microsoft Lens does a great job. Not only will it automatically make a number of corrections to make the document look its best, but it also offers a number of additional tools with which everything can be further edited and adjusted.

Scanned documents can be saved as PDF or transferred to OneNote, Word (OCR will be used) and PowerPoint, with the default location being OneDrive (so you need to sign in with a Microsoft account), but everything can also be saved to local smartphone storage . There are more possibilities and details, so Microsoft Lens is one of the best free mobile scanners with a handful of additional features.







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