OCR TOOLS

Best OCR Software Comparison (Pros & Cons)

Updated October 4, 2022
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Optical Character Recognition is a technology that converts an image into text. It can be used for many different purposes such as document conversion, searchable PDFs, or turning scanned documents into editable text.

OCR has become a vital part of work-life for people in the business world. OCR is used in different ways, from converting physical paper documents to digital formats, scanning hard-to-read handwritten forms, or creating indexed files of scanned documents by page number and keyword search terms.

Accessibility for people with disabilities is another reason businesses turn to OCR technology. If we think about having to read through documents with no formatting, such as PDFs, this would be very difficult for someone who cannot see well or cannot read. There are multiple tools available for Google Docs too. However, if you had software that could convert these documents into audio files or text-based formats such as HTML or Word, this would offer far more accessibility. There are many benefits to using software such as Word to convert documents into text-based formats such as HTML or Word. Text is widespread, meaning that sharing information over the internet or via email is now far easier. It also means that even if someone cannot see well or read, they can still access their documents.

If you want to digitize any paper-based documents, you must pick the right OCR software that can extract text from images or convert a PDF file into an editable format.

Contents

  • AWS Textract
    • Pros of AWS Textract
    • Cons of AWS Textract
  • Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
    • Pros of Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
    • Cons of Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
  • Nanonets
    • Pros of Nanonets
    • Cons of Nanonets
  • SimpleOCR
    • Pros of SimpleOCR
    • Cons of SimpleOCR
  • IronOCR
    • Pros of IronOCR
    • Cons of IronOCR
    • Code Examples
  • Conclusion

AWS Textract

Best OCR Software Comparison, Figure 1: AWS Textract

AWS Textract is a service that converts different types of documents into an editable format using deep learning. Let's imagine that you have hard copies of invoices from other companies and that you store all their information on spreadsheets on your device. This work is usually done manually, which is inefficient and can lead to mistakes.

Textract can take invoices as input and turns them into a structured output. Once you upload your invoices to Textract, it will do all the work of decoding the document for you.

AWS Textract has its own pros and cons — let's discuss these below.

Pros of AWS Textract

  • AWS Textract has a pay-per-use billing method. This can be helpful for purchases made on a budget.
  • It is easy to use and doesn't need any other integrated model.
  • It offers a free trial for testing.

Cons of AWS Textract

  • The main problem is that the accuracy varies with different resolutions and formats.
  • As it is an ML model, it should be able to train with user data, but this is not possible yet.

Adobe Acrobat Pro DC

Best OCR Software Comparison, Figure 2: Adobe Acrobat Pro DC

Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is an OCR software that helps you extract text and convert scanned documents into editable PDF files. Acrobat Pro DC provides a solution for saving and retrieving PDF files on mobile devices. It lets you create, edit, and convert PDFs to the formats of your choice. In addition to the OCR tools, you can share, sign, print, or compress PDFs directly from the app.

Adobe Acrobat PRO DC can also convert images to text. It recognizes your text and matches it to the appropriate fonts on your computer. Additionally, the Adobe Acrobat OCR technology also provides a range of other functions, including text recognition, commenting, and editing. You'll be able to reorder pages, combine files and rotate pages and images. You can even delete individual pictures or crop them to suit your needs.

Pros of Adobe Acrobat Pro DC

  • It is a multi-platform application. You can use it on desktop, web, and mobile
  • It supports multiple languages
  • It offers batch processing

Cons of Adobe Acrobat Pro DC

  • It is too expensive for general users
  • It requires highly specialized hardware to run

Nanonets

Best OCR Software Comparison, Figure 3: Nanonets

Nanonets is an AI-based OCR software that converts scanned paper documents into editable and searchable PDFs. Nanonets uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to identify and extract text from images. Nanonets can convert scanned documents into editable and searchable PDFs.

Nanonets can also convert PDF documents to the Word file format, which can then be opened in Microsoft Office.

Nanonets is accurate, easy to use, and can extract different types of data in many languages. Using deep learning, it can quickly validate the data gathered from scanned documents, continuously learning and improving as more data is collected.

Nanonets can also be used for data entry. It eliminates the need for human involvement to obtain (extract) information from documents. It's perfect for companies who have a lot of documents to input manually or who need to process data in bulk quickly. Companies can save time, money, and resources when inputting information into your database or Excel spreadsheet.

Pros of Nanonets

  • Input data can be scanned directly from any web-enabled device
  • It supports multiple languages and file formats

Cons of Nanonets

  • It is expensive
  • It has less than optimal output for blurred images and documents

SimpleOCR: Free OCR Software

SimpleOCR is a simple and easy-to-use OCR library lets you convert scanned images of text into editable and searchable text documents. It includes a despeckle "noisy document" option that boosts accuracy.

SimpleOCR is the best free OCR software for documents. It is designed for people who want to convert paper documents into digital formats without hassle. It is a famous software library that has helped hundreds of thousands of users It supports 100+ languages and can even change text direction from right-to-left (RTL).

Pros of SimpleOCR

  • Batch processing
  • Simple Navigation and easy UI
  • Free to use

Cons of SimpleOCR

  • The accuracy of the results is not good
  • The processing speed is slow

IronOCR: .NET OCR Library

Best OCR Software Comparison, Figure 4: IronOCR

IronOCR is a .NET library that allows developers to easily perform optical character recognition (OCR) tasks on text data. The library is fast, efficient, easy to use, and can be integrated into many applications. It is a valuable tool for .NET developers who need to process large amounts of text data using a powerful, feature-rich library.

IronOCR converts images and PDF documents into text quickly and with high quality and with high precision. It includes features such as automatic character recognition and OCR quality control. It recognizes many languages, such as English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, and Portuguese. Additionally, this library is compatible with many popular development platforms, including Windows, Mac, and Linux.

IronOCR is free to use for personal development use. If you're looking for a library that can help you quickly and easily convert images and documents to text, then IronOCR is a perfect choice.

Pros

  • IronOCR is easy to install
  • IronOCR doesn't require any external add-ons to work
  • IronOCR provides many features and customizations, which helps developers use it in their projects easily, efficiently, and effectively
  • IronOCR is well-documented, and many tutorials can be found on the Iron Software website
  • IronOCR supports 127 languages

Cons

IronOCR is not free for commercial use.

Code Example

Let's take a look at some code examples of IronOCR in action.

using IronOcr;

var Ocr = new IronTesseract();
using (var Input = new OcrInput(@"images\image.png"))
{
    Input.Deskew();
    // Input.DeNoise(); // only use if accuracy <97%
    var Result = Ocr.Read(Input);
    Console.WriteLine(Result.Text);
}
using IronOcr;

var Ocr = new IronTesseract();
using (var Input = new OcrInput(@"images\image.png"))
{
    Input.Deskew();
    // Input.DeNoise(); // only use if accuracy <97%
    var Result = Ocr.Read(Input);
    Console.WriteLine(Result.Text);
}
Imports IronOcr

Private Ocr = New IronTesseract()
Using Input = New OcrInput("images\image.png")
	Input.Deskew()
	' Input.DeNoise(); // only use if accuracy <97%
	Dim Result = Ocr.Read(Input)
	Console.WriteLine(Result.Text)
End Using
VB   C#

The above code extracts data from low-quality image files.

using IronOcr;

var Ocr = new IronTesseract();

using (var Input = new OcrInput())
{
    // OCR entire document
    Input.AddPdf("example.pdf", "password");

    // Alternatively, OCR selected page numbers
    Input.AddPdfPages("example.pdf", new[] { 1, 2, 3 }, "password");

    var Result = Ocr.Read(Input);
    Console.WriteLine(Result.Text);
}
using IronOcr;

var Ocr = new IronTesseract();

using (var Input = new OcrInput())
{
    // OCR entire document
    Input.AddPdf("example.pdf", "password");

    // Alternatively, OCR selected page numbers
    Input.AddPdfPages("example.pdf", new[] { 1, 2, 3 }, "password");

    var Result = Ocr.Read(Input);
    Console.WriteLine(Result.Text);
}
Imports IronOcr

Private Ocr = New IronTesseract()

Using Input = New OcrInput()
	' OCR entire document
	Input.AddPdf("example.pdf", "password")

	' Alternatively, OCR selected page numbers
	Input.AddPdfPages("example.pdf", { 1, 2, 3 }, "password")

	Dim Result = Ocr.Read(Input)
	Console.WriteLine(Result.Text)
End Using
VB   C#

The above code is used to extract data from an entire PDF document and from selected pages of a PDF document.

Conclusion

After comparing all the OCR software options, we have concluded that IronOCR is better than all the other OCR software referenced in this article.

IronOCR is highly customizable and offers a variety of functions that you can use according to your requirements. The price range is also optimized so that any developer or company can afford its packages. You can see more details about the pricing for IronOCR by following this link.

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