[Android] Turn your phone or tablet into a portable scanner with CamScanner

CamScanner for AndroidIf you have a portable scanner, then it would be much easier for you to scan and save any important document. As a matter of fact, you can use a portable scanner for scanning receipts, utility bills and handwritten notes. Speaking of which, did you know that you can turn your Android tablet or phone into a portable scanning device? Yes, you can. All you need to do is to download and install an app called CamScanner.

What Is It and What Does It Do

Main Functionality

CamScanner is a cross-platform mobile document scanning and sharing app. It is currently available in both free and paid versions. With the help of this app, you can literally turn your Android device into a portable scanner. It is also very easy to use. Just scan your documents using your device’s camera and that’s it. You’re all set to save and share your scanned document as PDF or JPEG. That’s not all. This app is also equipped with other useful features such as the ones listed below:

  • Smart cropping and auto enhance
  • User collaboration
  • File sharing
  • Upload, print and fax
  • Password protection
  • Search files by tags

Pros

  • User-friendly, convenient
  • Responsive and stable
  • Neatly designed UI
  • Lots of essential tools, features and options
  • Built-in search function (organize your files by tags)
  • Supports user collaboration
  • Supports batch scanning – scan multiple files at once
  • Supports other platforms – iPhone, iPad and Windows Phone 8
  • Can be directly linked to your cloud storage account
  • Supports optical character recognition (OCR) and annotations
  • You can crop and enhance the quality of your scanned file

Cons

  • Some of the app’s features are only available to its premium users – ex. extended user collaboration, extract text from image (OCR), unlimited annotations as well as the option to remove the app’s auto-generated watermark
  • Doesn’t support landscape mode

Discussion

CamScanner Mobile ScannerThere’s no doubt that CamScanner is definitely one of the best mobile document scanning apps that you can find in today’s market. It is easy to use, fast, responsive and stable. Furthermore, it’s feature-packed. It has all the essential tools and options that you need to scan, save and share your important documents. With the help of this app, you can scan almost anything and it doesn’t even matter if you’re in the office or not.

With CamScanner, you have the freedom to scan and process documents whenever or wherever you want. It’s a must-have app for students and professionals. It is also great for business owners and globetrotters. Compared to traditional scanners, this app is more convenient and cost-efficient.

To use this app, you simply need to install it on your Android device and once it’s installed, you’re all set to scan any document that you like. You can scan your old receipts, utility bills, lecture notes, etc. You can also use this app to scan those important sections that you’ve found while reading a magazine or newspaper.

To scan a document, just place your device over the document or file. Just make sure that every part or section of the file is visible in the preview screen. After which, just press the “scan” button then crop and enhance the scanned image as you like. You can also opt to keep it in its original format. As for your scanned document, it will be automatically stored on your CamScanner account. Furthermore, you can do whatever you want with it. You can even share it as a PDF or JPEG file.

All in all, I can say that this app is very reliable. It’s a very good application for scanning documents while on-the-go. It’s just that if you’re a free user, then you should be aware of its limitations. Keep in mind that some of the app’s features are only available to its premium users. Even so, the free version of the app is already good enough as it is so there’s really no need for you to upgrade unless, of course, you’re using it for business or professional purposes.

Conclusion and Download Link

To sum it all up, the free version of CamScanner is good for casual use. Meanwhile, its premium version is more suitable for users who wish to do more than just simple document scanning. Functionality wise, this mobile document scanning app has already proven its worth. So if you still haven’t tried it, go ahead and check it out by clicking the link below.

Price: Free, Premium – $4.99/month

Version reviewed: 3.3.0.20140425

Requires: Android 2.3 and up

Download size: 11MB

CamScanner on Play Store

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4 comments

  1. sgrams

    I just used the program again to try it for any differences between a photo and CamScanner, Camscanner did do a better job with making the text more legible and somewhat straightened out the page curve, I will continue to use the program and try out the PDF capability soon.

  2. njwood60

    [@sgrams] There are some significant differences from just taking a photo
    1. it improves the contrast so that the paper actually looks white and the writing looks black. With a normal photo taken under artificial light the contrast is not nearly as good
    2. It “straightens” and crops the image. With a phone it is quite difficult to get a image exactly “square”. So after you’ve taken the scan, it lets you adjust a “crop” around the image (which may involve having the crop lines on an angle), then it straightens and crops the image. It works really well.
    3. It allows you to OCR the document you’ve scanned, so you can later search through your documents to find specific words.
    4. You can add further scans to teh same “document”

  3. sgrams

    I downloaded this app and quickly tried it but I’m left thinking this is similar to just taking a photo and using the photo the same as the scanner? I will give it more of a workout later.

    Thank you for the review.

  4. njwood60

    Thanks Kent. I had already installed Cam scanner but just wanted to say that I find it absolutely amazing. It does a great job of scanning and creates a very clear image. I’m thinking of getting rid of my desktop scanner as this really does all I need.

    Note that you mention a “cam scanner” account. You don’t have to have an account (I don’t) you can just save everything on your phone.

    I also tried the OCR function ( I may have had to install something extra – can’t quite remember but It didn’t cost anything).

    The OCR is OK but not as good as the OCR program I have on my PC