If you have paper documents that you would like to digitize you no longer need to splash out on a flatbed scanner if you have an iPhone. As Apple has integrated a fantastic iPhone scan feature in its official Apple Notes application that allows you to quickly scan documents, contracts, photos and more using your iPhone’s camera. Enabling you to quickly and easily create digital copies using any iOS device whether it be an iPhone, iPad or iPod.
Using the Apple Notes app, you can scan documents using your iPhone or iPad camera, taking images of documents and automatically transforming them into scanned documents that are clearer and easier to read than a normal snapshot photo. After a scan has been captured, you can easily to store, email, message, distribute and even sign the scanned documents as required.
How to scan with an iPhone
The Apple Notes app can also add your signature to contracts and scans on your iPhone or iPad, allowing you to quickly email authorization to third parties with no need for a computer, flatbed scanner or similar. Simply open the Apple Notes app and create a new note or select an existing one. When a note opens on your iPhone or iPad, select the camera icon from the middle of the screen above the keyboard and choose the option to “Scan Documents” as pictured above.
If you have your iPhone set to “Auto” mode, your iPhone will automatically start scanning your document once the image is positioned squarely on your screen. A yellow see-through box filter will appear on your screen, showing you the area of the document that will be scanned. You can stop this auto scanning feature by tapping the Shutter button or one of the volume buttons on your device. Once in “Manual” mode, you can position the document on your screen and capture the image manually when ready, by pressing the Shutter button once again.
Once you a capture an image of your document, you can then crop it by tapping its thumbnail down in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen. This will take you to the editing screen and present four new icons at the bottom allowing you to Crop, Transform the image to a gray scale or black-and-white image or photo if desired. Using these icons, you can also rotate the image and discard it or retake it by pressing the “Retake” option in the top right-hand corner of the screen as in the image below on the left.
Sign a scanned document in iOS
If you need to sign a document and send it on to a third-party, the Apple Notes app allows you to do this easily using Markup. Simply tap the document in the note and then the “Share” button in the top right-hand corner of your screen. This will then bring up a new menu allowing you to select the Markup option in the list of options below. Simply tap the + button in the bottom right-hand corner of the Markup screen for a new list of options which include the ability to add a Description, Text, Signature or Magnify a certain area as well as add extra markup to the document such as speech bubbles, arrows, circles and more if needed.
If you already have a signature saved to your iPhone, it will be displayed and you can simply tap it to add it to the document. Once added, simply position it and resize as desired and save your document by clicking “Done” in the top left-hand corner of your screen. Your signature will then be added to the scanned document, allowing you to easily and quickly send confirmation or sign contracts, allowing you to respond to your third-parties or customers without delay.
Scan QR codes on iPhone
If you would like to scan a QR code using your iPhone or iPad, simply open your camera app in Photo mode and target the QR code on your screen. The camera will automatically recognize it as a QR code, although during this stage you may need to tap on the QR code on the iPhone screen for your camera to focus on it correctly.
If it is successfully recognized, you will see a yellow box appear around the QR code with a yellow bubble underneath with a description of the URL of the QR code. Simply tap the QR code once again on your iPhone or iPad screen and it will open in Apple’s Safari browser or your preferred choice of mobile browser. Making it easy-to-use QR codes to jump to websites without having to enter the full URL, which can be extremely fiddly on small screen devices.