Top 5 Ways to Convert Image to Text Using OCR

It's a common need to extract text from an image and make it editable. Thankfully, many converters are offered on the market that can help you convert picture to text using OCR technology. Whether you want to convert your pictures to text on a Mac, Windows PC, iPhone, iPad, Android phone, or online free, there is a tool for it.

This post lists 5 OCR tools that can help you extract text from JPG, PNG, and PDF images on different devices. You can select a suitable image-to-text converter based on your need.

Picture to Text

Part 1. How to Convert Picture to Text Online with Free JPG Word Converter

First, we like to recommend a free online tool, Free JPG Word Converter, to help you extract text from images accurately. It is specially designed for converting JPG to Word. Besides the JPG pictures, it supports PNG, JPEG, and BMP images. You can easily take the following guide to turn photos or screenshots into texts.

Step 1.
Open your web browser, search for the Aiseesoft Free JPG Word Converter tool, and then go to its official site. As you can see, apart from converting pictures to Word, this free OCR converter also enables you to convert PDF and Word to JPG.
Go to Free JPG Word Converter Online Site
Step 2.
Click the Add JPG Files button under the JPG to Word Conversion. From the pop-up window, you can browse and upload your picture. The max file size of your uploaded picture is 5MB. Click the Convert All button to start the image to text conversion. When the conversion completes, please click the Download button to save the text file on your computer.
Convert JPG to Text Online Free

This online image to text converter allows you to convert up to 40 files/day for free. After the free image to text converting, the quality of the source image file like style and layout, will be preserved to the maximum.

Part 2. How to Free Copy Text from Pictures in OneNote

Microsoft's OneNote supports Optical Character Recognition and lets you convert images to text. It offers you a convenient way to copy text from an image file and then paste it into your notes. You can use it on both Windows PC and Mac to turn images into text.

Step 1.
OneNote is pre-installed on all editions of Windows 10. So as a Windows 10 user, you can directly launch it to make the image to text conversions. If you are not using a Windows 10 computer or don't have OneNote, you can free download it from the Microsoft Store. As a Mac user, you can free download OneNote in the App Store.
Step 2.
Open OneNote, copy the image file you want to convert, and then paste it into OneNote. After that, you can right-click on your picture and select the Copy Text from Picture option.
Copy Text Picture OneNote
Step 3.
Now you are allowed to paste the text you copied right now to wherever you like. Then you can get an editable text file.

Part 3. How to Free Convert PDF and Pictures to Text Using Google Drive

If you have used Google Drive for a period, you can free convert JPG, JPEG, PNG, GIF, and PDF files to text in your drive. You are allowed to copy text from the image files in your Google Drive account, computers, and iOS/Android devices.

Step 1.
Go to the official page of Google Drive and sign into your account. You can click on the My Drive or Computers from the left sidebar to locate the photo you like to convert. You can also click the New button to upload images from the local hard drive.
Step 2.
When you find the image file you want to convert to text, you can right-click on it, choose Open with, and then select the Google Docs option.
Open Picture With Google Docs
Step 3.
Now you will be taken to a new page and the source image file will be turned into a Google Doc. All text in your picture will be listed under the source image file. You can check, copy, and edit text according to your need.
Picture to Text Google Drive

Note that, when you want to convert pictures captured on your iPhone, iPad, or Android phone, you should also make the conversions on a computer.

Part 4. How to Convert Photo and Screenshot to Text on iPhone, iPad, and Mac

Apple brings a new Live Text feature in iOS 16/17, iPad OS 15/16, and macOS Sonoma to help you recognize and copy the text in images. So, you can use the built-in OCR apps to convert photos to text on your iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Here we take converting picture to text on iPhone as an example.

Step 1.
Open the Camera app on your iPhone and then use it to capture the picture you like to convert to text.
Step 2.
Tap on the Live Text button in the bottom right of the image. Now you are allowed to tap and copy the text in the picture. After that, you can open a destination document or app, and then tap Paste to see the copied text.
Copy Text in Image on iPhone

For the captured photos or screenshots, when you want to copy text from them, you can open it in the Photos app, keep tapping on the text part, select the text you like to copy, and then tap on the Copy button to confirm that.

Convert Screenshot to Text on iPhone

Part 5. How to Extract Text from Images on an Android Phone

As an Android user, you can free extract text from pictures using Google Photos. If you don't have the OCR app installed on your Android device, you should install it from Google Play Store first. Then you can follow the steps below to convert pictures to text.

Step 1.
Open the Google Photos app and find the picture with the text in it.
Step 2.
After you open the picture, you can see a Copy Text from Image button appears at the bottom screen. Tap on it to start detecting the text in this image file. You can also use the Lens option to extract text from a photo.
Step 3.
Tap and hold the text you want to copy, and then tap on the Copy Text button to confirm your operation.

Part 6. FAQs of Picture to Text

Question 1. What is OCR?

OCR, short for optical character recognition, is an AI-based pattern recognition technology that can identify text inside images. It can help to turn images into editable digital documents.

Question 2. Can Google copy text from an image?

Yes. As mentioned above, you can rely on Google Drive or Google Photos to easily extract the text inside of your pictures.

Question 3. Can Adobe OCR text in PDF and image files?

Adobe has the Acrobat product to create, edit, and view PDF files. You can use it to OCR text in PDF and image files. You can open your image file in Acrobat, click the Tools button in the top right of the toolbar, and then click the In This File button under the Recognize Text tab.


For many reasons, you may want to extract text from pictures. This post shares 5 useful methods to help you convert picture to text. If you have any better text scanner or OCR tool recommendations, please share them in the comment with other readers.

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