Best Free OCR Tools to Extract Useful Information from an Image

Do you hate slow and boring data entry from the bulk of pictures and pdfs? Data entry can be extremely intimidating when you have to get data from images manually.

Moreover, the odds of getting wrong data multiply as you have to stretch your head through tons of words and numbers. Your situation becomes further aggravated if you are asked to complete your task in a specified time.

If you want to get out of this anxiety and exponentially increase your data extraction speed, use any of the image-to-text converter OCR tools.

What is OCR technology?

OCR is also called Optical Character Recognition. It is a technology that recognizes the written text in any non-editable form like a picture and converts it into editable.

You can extract any data from pictures, or printed or handwritten text into machine-readable data. Once you get a soft copy of your text, you can use it anywhere. You can convert data in pdf form or a Doc file. PDFdrive is the best source to download any pdf file or doc.

OCR is being used in almost every field, but it is commonly used to convert pictures to text in online business, automation, data entry, database generation, and indexing, governmental credentials identification like passport, barcode scanning in sales, and purchases, etc.

How does OCR work?

OCR works by scanning your characters in the picture and implementing its algorithms to recognize the characters and then convert them into text that can be edited.

Here, AI helps in training the machine to understand the text. Understanding, however, does not mean in literal terms. It is the recognition phase in which the text is first understood. But before understanding, the machine is trained with different possible forms of characters.

After training or machine learning, it becomes capable of recognizing any text and comparing that text with a set of most similar characters. Once the device is trained with AI, it becomes ready to use.

What are the steps involved in data extraction from images?

Scanning:

First, the picture containing the text is scanned through a text scanner or other scanning device. Your image is converted into a black and white soft document through the thresholding process.

The overall data extraction depends upon the quality of scanning. The clearer the black and white image is, the better is its extraction.

Segmenting:

Our eyes can distinguish between text and graphs easily. We can determine and point out the written text separately. It is not that easy for a machine. Segmenting is the phase where the written text is separated into text and non-text segments.

These steps simplify extraction because the image-to-text converter only focuses on text segments as the non-text parts are irrelevant.

But, this step becomes complicated when graphs, tables, and flowcharts are smudged with text or the non-text part is too close to be segmented separately.

Pre-processing:

As the name suggests, this step involves several techniques to optimize the characters before the processing stage. It covers the filling and thinning of characters, noise reduction, and the normalizing of characters.

Filling involves removing gaps and holes in the characters and thinning deals with reducing the size of characters.

The main aim of this stage is to pre-empt any noise or to clear the characters for better resolution. Normalization is needed when the characters become too big or too small in thinning or filling.

It deals with making the characters’ size appropriate for the next stage and getting better results.

Extracting Features:

The most important step on OCR is extracting characters’ features from the segments and comparing them with their counterparts already present inside the device’s algorithms.

At last, the picture to text converter represents the extracted text into suitable form like MS Word or google docs format.

Some immensely popular Best OCR tools:

Prepostseo.com

Prepostseo developed an AI-Based image-to-text converter that has various interesting features. Therefore, the text extraction becomes easy and simple with a few steps to perform.

You can copy or upload a picture into the tool to get your requested text in a split second. Another way to use an image-to-text converter is to paste the URL you want to get the image.

This tool has a good preprocessing mechanism; it can scan and extract text from low-resolution pictures.

It is most popular in the field because of its cost-effectiveness and security. This tool is free and is secure from data stealing.

This image-to-text converter supports multiple languages and extracts maths equations. Therefore, it is the most optimized tool of its kind.

Imagetotext.info

This tool is best for the picture to text extraction from handwritten notes, images used in offices, marketing, identity detectors.

This tool is created with tesseract-OCR, technology developed by HP (Hewlett Packard), a renowned IT company that produces computers and other hardware equipment. For this reason, this tool is popular among the masses.

You can convert pictures to text in various formats like JPG, JPEG, BMP, TIF, and many others. In addition, it is free to use and possesses a download option to save your text in the desired storage.

It has authority in dealing with data entry and produces 100% accurate results.

Imagetotext.io

Convert photos to editable text is a versatile tool because it converts images to readable text.

The text produced can be manipulated without any problem. Moreover, you can use this tool to convert pdf into word files.

It is probably one of its kind in converting image files into excel files. Therefore, people use it for data entry.

You can drag files into the tool or upload them through the upload option. You can get 10 pages of text for free with this tool, but you have to sign up first to access more benefits.

Summing it up:

OCR has a plethora of benefits and has revolutionized the data entry industry.

You can automate your business, excel in your marketing, maintain deep security checks, and more through a picture to text converter.

Use the best OCR converters of your choice and automate your work.