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5 Free OCR Tools to Convert Images Into Text In 2022

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You want to extract text from an image quickly, but the availability of several options has confused you. If this sounds like you, we have you covered.

Today, we will take an in-depth look at the five free OCR tools. We will consider everything in this honest-review guide, from back-end algorithms of OCR tools to their features. But apart from this, we will also share a few examples to show you the quality of the top-notch OCR engines. So, without any further ado, let’s begin. 

List of the Best Free OCR Software:

The first free optical character recognition tool on this list is the ‘Image to Text Converter from Prepostseo.

Prepostseo’s Image to Text Converter is a multi-image freemium OCR online tool. So, it allows you to extract text from three images in one go for free. But if you want to extract text from more than three images in one try, you must purchase its premium plan.

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This image-to-text extractor works on the latest OCR algorithm. That is why it can accurately extract text from even low-quality images. But once this tool has executed its OCR algorithm on the uploaded pictures, you can:

  • Copy the extracted text to the clipboard.
  • Save it in a document or text file.
  • Edit the text and copy the modified text.

Advantages:

This OCR software is the most valuable tool on this list. So, let’s understand its worth through the benefits of this tool.

  • This OCR software can extract text from multiple languages. So, it can not only work with numerous images, but it can also extract text written in other languages.
  • This tool is advanced enough to automatically detect images from the web and cloud storage (Google Drive). But you can also upload pictures from local device storage.
  • If you have copied an image to the clipboard, you can directly paste a copied image to this tool.
  • This tool can also be a free pdf OCR software because it can extract text from PDF images.
  • It can extract text from the following file types:
    • BMP.
    • GIF.
    • JPG.
    • JPEG.
    • PNG.
    • TIFF.
  • The accuracy of this image-to-text converter is unquestionable when dealing with pictures containing mathematical expressions. So, if you want to extract mathematical terms from photos, this is the best OCR software.
  • This image-to-text converter also has an android application. So, you can enjoy the same features on your android smartphone.

Disadvantages:

But despite being our top pick, it has a few drawbacks. So, let’s look at them.

  • This tool can destroy text formatting if your image is not well-cropped.
  • The image-to-text converter of Prepostseo is not an entirely free tool.

The second OCR tool on this list is the ‘Free Online OCR by OCR.best, which is famous for its rich UI.

The Free Online OCR from OCR.best is an AI image-to-text extractor that works on the advanced Machine Learning libraries named ‘TensorFlow’ and ‘Scikit-learn. This tool compares the objects of an uploaded image at a microscopic level with the objects in its database. So, whether you upload a picture with structured or unstructured data, this tool can easily extract data from that image.

As the name depicts, this image-to-text extractor is a free tool that offers several image uploading options. For instance, you can

  • Upload the image file from the local device storage.
  • Add images directly from the web by pasting their link.
  • Include the clipboard images in this tool.
  • Upload the pictures directly from Dropbox and Google Drive.

Working Modules of Free Online OCR:

Text can be of different shapes and types. So, when it comes to converting text to images, this tool works on three modules:

  • OCR:

The Free Online OCR tries this module if the image contains well-structured data. In this module, the tool takes help from a template to target the extraction points of the picture.

  • OCR + ML:

The combination of OCR and Machine Learning will help extract text if the image contains structured data, but it has some variations. Here, Machine Learning works first to make the task easier for OCR, as it (ML) fits the image into a template. This way, OCR can quickly process it.

  • Intelligent Data Processing:

The tool takes assistance from this module if the image contains unstructured data. That is why the tool doesn’t try to fit the uploaded picture into any template. Instead, Machine Learning works alone in this module to determine, extract and clean the extraction points.

Benefits:

Thanks to its advanced working mechanism, this tool brings several benefits to you. So, let’s see them.

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  • Like the first tool, the Free Online OCR can also detect the images copied to the clipboard.
  • One of the significant plus points of this tool is its free-of-cost availability.
  • The Free Online OCR allows you to upload a picture from Dropbox. That’s where this tool has the upper hand.
  • This image-to-text extractor is one of the richest OCR tools in terms of the user interface. This factor is the main talking point of the Free Online OCR tool.
  • You can download this tool’s Android or iOS application on your smartphone to try its OCR functionalities on the go.
  • You can upload any picture to this tool, as this tool has no restriction on the supported file formats.
  • Once this tool has extracted the text from an image, it will allow you to copy it or download it in a document file.

Drawbacks:

Why have we put this tool in the second spot? Let’s find out the answer to this question through its drawbacks.

  • It cannot work with multiple images, as its advanced OCR engine can only detect text from a single picture in one try.
  • Despite advanced algorithms, this OCR tool sometimes gives an error while extracting text. It may be a bug with the Free Online OCR tool. But it often occurs.

The third tool for converting images into text files is the ‘Image to Text Converter by Editpad.org.

As the name depicts, the working of Editpad.org’s Image to Text Converter is similar to the first tool of this list. But this OCR tool has fewer features. That’s why we have put this tool in the third spot.

Despite having lesser features, this image-to-text converter’s OCR algorithm goes head-to-head with the first tool’s OCR algorithm. So, it is just a simpler and cleaner version of the first tool with fewer options.

Pros:

As mentioned earlier, this tool is closely related to the Prepostseo’s image-to-text converter. So, let’s see this tool’s unique and common features through its benefits.

  • This image-to-text converter is a one-click OCR tool. So, you can instantly convert your image into text format.
  • For your ease, the developers of this tool have integrated the drag-and-drop functionality in this tool. So, you can drag the files from local device storage and upload them into this tool. 
  • As mentioned earlier, it works on the same OCR algorithm. So, it can also detect the text from images written in other languages.
  • Without downloading, you can extract the text directly from an image over the web by pasting its URL.
  • This image-to-text converter is completely free, as it has no hidden costs.

Cons:

Now, let’s see the drawbacks of this tool to understand why it falls behind when compared to the first two tools.

  • You can only copy the extracted text to the clipboard, as this tool has no additional text-saving options.
  • This image-to-text converter cannot extract text from multiple images.
  • This tool cannot detect the clipboard images.
  • This tool has no option for uploading images from cloud storage.
  • Img2txt

The fourth tool is the ‘Free Optical Character Recognition from img2txt, which is another rich tool in terms of UI.

img2txt offers a free multilingual image-to-text extraction service in the form of the Free Optical Character Recognition tool. It works on the Tesseract OCR algorithm to convert the images into editable formats.

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Once this tool has extracted the text from an image, it will allow you to save that text in the following formats:

  • .docx.
  • .odf.
  • .pdf.
  • .txt.

Positives:

Now, let’s see the major highlights of this OCR tool through its benefits.

  • This image-to-text converter is entirely free, as it has no hidden costs.
  • This tool can extract text written in 35+ languages. So, it is the most powerful multilingual image-to-text extractor on this list.
  • Besides the basic image formats (.jpg, .jpeg, .png), this free OCR tool can extract text from multi-page PDF documents.

Negatives:

Why have we put this tool in the fourth spot? Let’s find out the answer to this question through its negative points.

  • You can only upload the image file into this tool from local device storage, as no additional options are available.
  • Despite having a rich UI, this tool doesn’t support drag-and-drop functionality.
  • It doesn’t support multiple images.

So far, we have discussed dedicated image-to-text conversion tools. But for the last spot, we have picked Google Docs’ because of the accuracy of its OCR engine.

Google Docs is a non-dedicated image-to-text converter. Therefore, it works alongside Google Drive to upload the image files. Then, it relies on Google’s OCR algorithm to scan the text from the uploaded image file.

Since it relies on the latest OCR technique, it even tries to detect the pattern, formatting and coloring while extracting text from images. So, the accuracy of this tool’s OCR engine is on-par with the top-notch OCR engines.

Advantages:

Now, let’s see how Google Docs stack up against the top-notch image-to-text converters through its benefits.

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  • Since it works with Google Drive, it can detect text from all image formats.
  • The OCR engine of Google Docs is advanced enough to detect extracted text’s language automatically.
  • Generally, Google Docs saves the formatting of the text upon extracting text from images.
  • This tool is entirely free.
  • The OCR engine of Google Docs is ideal for converting images that contain handwriting into editable files.

Disadvantages:

There are a few drawbacks to using Google Docs for converting images to text files. So, let’s see them.

  • Google Docs works alongside Google Drive to convert images into text. So, it is not a dedicated image-to-text extractor. This factor is the only reason for putting this tool in the last spot.
  • The accuracy of this tool’s OCR engine is questionable when detecting text from images, like receipts.
  • It cannot detect text from images with less than 10 pixels.

Conclusion:

Extracting text from images was never easy. But thanks to the advent of technology, everyone can now access high-quality OCR tools.

OCR tools work on the ‘feature detection’ or ‘pattern detection’ techniques to convert images into editable formats. When such tools scan a picture, they consider the dark areas as characters that need to be recognized. That’s how the basic Optical Character Recognition technique works. However, OCR tools have become more advanced now.

Now, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence have made their way to extracting text from images. But finding the right tool for your needs is still a challenge. That’s where you can take assistance from this guide.

Here, we have discussed five of the best free OCR tools based on modern technology. So, read the above-discussed detailed reviews to pick the right OCR tool according to your needs.

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