DocScanner in Review – Transforming your iDevice into an iScanner

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The idea behind DocScanner is that it allows you to capture your paper documents and/or images similar to how a scanner would. When I first came across the app I loved the idea and thought that it could be extremely useful, having the ability to keep digital copies of all my daily paperwork.

DocScanner makes as good a scanner of the iPhone as it can. Using the camera instead of a scanner bed, you position the document in your view like you would frame a photograph. It’s best to try and leave a bit around the edge if possible. The reason for doing so is that after you take the image you are brought to a screen which will detect the corners of your document, which can be if needed, moved around to more accurately capture the edges of the paper. In testing, I found that it was fairly accurate in detecting edges and automatically recognizing the size of the document based on how far its outline is stretched.

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After you’ve settled on the outline, you are brought to a screen with some symbols for delete, save/email, and edit (which is a basic brightness/contrast enhancing engine and option for converting to greyscale). It would have been nice to have sharpness/smoothing and some resizing tools. Hopefully, in future updates they will allow more tools to edit the image. As it stands now rather than mimicking a scanned image, the end result looks more like a poor quality fax.

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After framing the document properly, it is time to either save or email it.  Both choices present you with 2 more options.  Whether you choose JPEG or PDF, the email option will open up the email app, attach the image and pop the title of the image into the subject line. If you choose to save it, you will be asked if you want to save the image to your camera roll or to the apps own “documents” folder where the image will be saved with a generic title. To change it, just select the image from the list and add the letters you want with the edit button.

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You can also create multiple page documents using three methods. The first is to do each page individually as you would with a regular scanner. Once you’ve scanned all the pages, just go into the first one and press the “+” symbol in the bottom right to add additional images. Alternately, you have the option to “scan” from an album which will crop any album image any way you want. The last way is to scan the first image and from the edit screen select the scan from camera option and then add the next photo in the same way.

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*Important note. If you need to create the multiple page document like above, you will need to save any images you intend to use to the camera roll rather than to the app’s documents folder where you will not later be able to select them. Consider yourself warned.

In the end I have to say I was a little dissapointed by DocScanner. The quality is no better than what you would get from just using the stock camera app. In some cases, it is worse because you have to zoomed out so far in order to get the whole page. In fairness, the developers have reported that there will be signifigant improvements in the next release, but even so, at it’s current price, I would still recommend that you save your money and just use the camera for now.

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App Summary
Title:DocScanner (Version 1.8.2)Developer:Norfello Oy
Price:$8.99 (Sale Price)App Size:1.7MB
  • Scans documents of any size
  • Color/Greyscale rendering
  • Poor image quality
  • Too few editing options
  • Hard to create multiple page scans
  • Too pricey for overall fit, finish and features

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