Microsoft launched Office Lens last year on Windows Phone to much acclaim. The app uses your phone’s camera to scan documents and convert them into document files, but was a little more feature rich than even many of the paid third-party options out there. Now, Android and iOS users get to see what Office Lens is about—Microsoft has released the app on both platforms for free.
Office Lens is one of the more advanced scanning apps available. Instead of using a grid to help you line up your camera to snap photos of documents, you can just shoot and the app will take care of the rest. The app can automatically detect the borders of the document you’re scanning and render the document accordingly. At that point, you have the option of saving your scanned document as a PDF or as a document or PowerPoint slide. The app works pretty well with all kinds of text, including standard-sized paper documents, business cards, whiteboards and receipts.
Thanks to optical character recognition technology, the app can recognize what’s on the scanned document, allowing you to not only edit the document but search through it using keywords. The app uses that same technology to take contact information from business cards and automatically update your address book using that information. You can also share from the app or save to your OneNote or OneDrive accounts. Unfortunately, there’s no third party integration, so you can’t send your scanned files to Dropbox or any other cloud storage services directly from Lens.
iOS users can get Office Lens from the iTunes App Store now for free. Android users will need to wait a little while longer for the finished app, but they can access a preview version by joining the Office Lens Android Preview community in Google+ and becoming a tester.