How to quickly scan documents right from your mobile phone

Whether you’re applying for a new apartment or loan, or saving old recipes or receipts, at some point you’ve probably needed to scan a document or two.

But scanning can be tedious yet necessary — an analog task that somehow still exists in the digital age — and it can be especially difficult if you don’t own a scanner or all-in-one printer, or don’t want to shell out hundreds for a piece of equipment you may only use a few times.

We have a great solution for you found right in your pocket! Here’s a quick tip on how to scan documents from your phone without the need for a scanner or all-in-one printer.


Scanning documents from your iOS device

You can easily scan documents from your iPhone or iPad from right inside the Notes app. Here’s how to scan documents from your iOS device:

  1. Open the Notes app.If you can’t find the Notes app, search for it by swiping down from the middle of the home screen (on older devices, you might need to swipe right). Tap the search bar, start typing “Notes,” then open the app.
  2. Create a new Note or open an existing Note.
  3. Tap the Camera button, then tap Scan Documents
  4. Hold your phone over the document or object you want to scan and follow the instructions on the screen (for example, your device may ask you to move closer or farther away).
  5. If Auto is enabled, your device should automatically scan. If not, manually press the shutter button. Drag the corners to adjust the scanned area, and press Keep Scan. Then, scan a new document to add to the Note or press Save.
  6. In order to use the document outside of the Notes app, you may want to send it to yourself or someone else. To do that, tap the More button to bring up a list of commands, including Send a Copy.

Scanning documents from your Android device

Scanning documents and saving them as PDF files from your Android device is also equally as simple. Here’s how to do that from your Android phone or tablet:

  1. To begin scanning, open Google Drive
  2. Next, tap Add in the bottom right corner of the app.
  3. Then, tap Scan

  4. You can now adjust the scan area, take the photo again, or scan another page.
  5. Tap Done when you’re finished. Your file will be saved in your Google Drive.