best OCR app for IPhone 5 for a totally blind person?

iOS & iPadOS
Dear all, I have just purchased text grabber and to be honest, I did not have much success with it. At best, I could scan a line of text. Therefore, I would like to ask your opinion on the best OCR app for a totally blind person with iPhone 5. Do you need a portable scanner or a stand for the iPhone? Would that help with text grabber? If not please would you advice me on the best app to purchase? Thank you once again for your help. I hope I can be of some help to you in the future too. Best, John



Submitted by Travis Roth on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I have had the best results with TextGrabber. It does seem that the "best OCR app" is subjective and everyone has his or her favorite. For me, it is TextGrabber. The one certainty with OCR apps is it will come down to the quality of the picture. Make sure that it is well lit. In TextGrabber I set the flash to always be on to help with this. In addition, a stand can really help such as the StandScan. But it is not necessary if you can hold the camera steady in the center of the page. I took a cue from the Standscan stand and hold the camera approximately 11-12 inches above the thing I am scanning. Hope this helps.

Submitted by John W. hess on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Good morning. I have tried text grabber and Prizmo and text grabber is excellent. I use it to read mail and have actually used it to grab a shot of my computer screen. The previous poster offered great suggestions on how to use it. Thanks.

Submitted by Saqib on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I have tried all the others but Text Grabber is the best of the bunch. I can see to focus the camera on the whole page and I hold the phone around 15cm away with good natural lighting from a strip light in the kitchen as that's the brightest room in my place when using artificial lighting. I do get some gibberish on some lines on some occasions but not enough to prompt me to re-take the photo again. I only ever use it to read mail on a daily basis.

Submitted by Geovanni on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Yes. I have the same issue. I baught it and was very disappointed. Nothing that was scanned made any sence. I would be interested as well if anyone has any tips on how to get this to work better. Since I did buy it, tips would be appreciated, but if anyone has ideas on other apps, they would be certainly welcomed as well. Using an iPhone5 with iOS 7.04.

Submitted by Geovanni on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

In reply to by Geovanni

Well, on seeing the comments I see that it seems to be the most reliable app. I guess I will keep giving it a try. Anybody knows of a podcast I can listen to on it?

Submitted by Debbie Gillespie on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

In reply to by Travis Roth

Your tips on holding the iPhone ar most helpful. What iPhone are you using as your device? I have not had good luck with any of these apps using an iPhone 4 as an example.

Submitted by Tangela on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I have been using prizmo for several months so far and, though I haven't tried Text Grabber, I find I can get about 90% accuracy with it. Another feature of prizmo which recommends it above other OCR apps I've used is importing. Currently, Prizmo allows importing from both image-only pdfs and images from your camera that you have previously taken or saved.

Hi, I originally used TextGrabber on an iPhone 4 before upgrading to the 5s. The iPhone 4 was not near as good with OCR apps for me, including TextGrabber. If it did get a good picture it took up to a miute to process, whereas the 5s processor can do it in about three seconds. Due to the enhancements in the cameras I would recommend upgrading to at least a 4s camera where Apple (reportedly) started including hardware and processing to help stabilize images due to a person's hand moving a bit. Other than that, for a sheet of standard letter-sized paper I would say to hold the phone about 12 inches (30 cm) above it, and make sure it is well lit. Setting the scanning app such as TextGrabber to use the flash can help improve the chance of the picture receiving enough light though I do not think this is enough light by itself in an entirely dark place. Also remember to center the camera, which is not the entire phone. Remember the camera is on the corner of the phone. My other advice is this: for important reading it is hard to beat a desktop scanner and OCR app such as FineReader or OmniPage.

Submitted by LaBoheme on Wednesday, January 1, 2014

In reply to by Travis Roth

> it is hard to beat a desktop scanner and OCR app such as FineReader well, i agree, but i would suggest getting a scanner with wifi or blutooth capability and use it in conjunction with an iphone. use the scanner for mission critical scanning and use the iphone camera when you are out about. text grabber is truly the best in my experience. the only thing i'll add is that 12 inches seems to far away in most situations, try 7 to 8 inches. especially if you are scanning small images, such as a business card or credit card, 3 inches would be ideal.

Submitted by Governor28 on Wednesday, January 1, 2014

In reply to by LaBoheme

Can anyone provide a comparison of text grabber versus text detective. I have seen some really positive post about text detective and was wondering which one would be the best.

I have also tried several OCR apps, and by far prefer TextGrabber. It's fast and easy to use. I most often use it on an iPhone 5, but also sometimes use the app on a 4S and a 5th Gen iPod Touch. As far as camera placement, I put the device flat on the reading material, right in the middle, and then lift it up 8 to 12 inches, depending on the size of material. If you are trying to scan something small like a business card, you probably don't want to raise the device as high. Also consider whether the material is glossy or not. If the room is well lit, I find that turning the flash off when scanning glossy materials sometimes helps. By far, I have the best results with TextGrabber though.

Submitted by Diana on Thursday, January 2, 2014

Hi. I've been trying to import images without much luck in prizmo. It doesn't tell me images in my camera roll or photo stream. How do I find an image I want to import to extract text?