Apple has been improving its Notes app each year, and the ability to scan documents within the app in iOS is better than ever. Follow along after the break for a look at how this useful feature works. We’ll also look at how to scan documents right in the Files app.

Apple has done a nice job implementing document scanning seamlessly into Notes. It works well and is quick and easy to use. I love having my scans synchronized across all of my Apple devices and it’s super fast to share scans with or without marking them up.

One thing to keep in mind, if you’re going to be scanning a lot of documents, you’ll likely want to stick with a dedicated sheet-fed scanner like a Fujitsu ScanSnap model. But if you’re doing more casual scanning (or don’t need auto document feeding), iPhone and iPad can handle it smoothly.

iOS: How to scan documents in the Notes app

  1. Open a new or existing note
  2. Tap the camera icon and tap Scan Documents
  3. Place your document in the camera’s view
  4. You can use the auto-capture option by bringing your doc into the viewfinder or use the shutter button or one of the volume buttons to capture the scan
  5. If needed, adjust the corners of the scan by dragging, then tap Keep Scan
  6. You can scan more pages if needed, tap Save in the bottom right corner when you’re all done

*You can also scan documents easily right into the Files app to get them into iCloud Drive/your Mac or another device. After opening the Files app, tap the three-dot icon in the top right, and tap Scan Documents.

Here’s how scanning looks in the Notes app:

How to scan with iPhone iOS notes app walkthrough 1

This feature works really nicely for any size document, but is especially handy for large documents that can be goofy to scan with a traditional scanner.

One tip on adjusting the captured area: tap a bit away from the magnifying glass in each corner and then drag to where you’d like it to be.

How to scan with iPhone iOS notes app walkthrough 2

You also get the option to use the camera flash and filters when scanning. You can change those settings at the top of your screen.

You can also edit your documents after you’ve scanned them. Tap on your scanned docs to bring up the editing toolbar (at the bottom of your screen, shown in the third image above) to add more pages, change the filter, rotate, and crop.

Tapping the share button (top right corner) from within the scanned docs will allow you to markup, markup as PDF, print, copy, and share.

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About the Author

Michael Potuck

Michael is an editor for 9to5Mac. Since joining in 2016 he has written more than 3,000 articles including breaking news, reviews, and detailed comparisons and tutorials.