OCR makes short work of digitizing your docs

At a Glance

This competent freebie is excellent for extracting text, and that's all it does.

Price when rated: Free

Pros

  • Good text extraction
  • Supports many languages
  • Free

Cons

  • No document re-creation
  • Processes only one image or PDF at a time
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At a Glance

Trees will find a lot to like in the new Acrobat, but Adobe's implementation of a paperless workflow may not make it easy enough for businesses to change their ways.

Price when rated: $499 for Pro; $299 for Standard

Pros

  • Useful new editing features
  • Better merging of documents
  • Excellent forms and signature support

Cons

  • Forms and e-signing are accomplished by separate apps and sites

At a Glance

If your OCR needs are small, then this limited but free online service will extract your text just fine.

Price when rated: Free

Pros

  • Works well with text documents
  • Free

Cons

  • Doesn't re-create documents in PDF or Word
  • Limited input file size

At a Glance

Excellent OCR and page reconstruction highlight this package, which is a workhorse for the genre.

Price when rated: $150

Pros

  • Very good OCR
  • Good complex document recreation
  • Basic PDF features

Cons

  • Overzealous rotating of images by default

At a Glance

This OCR program provide excellent text extraction, but middling page reconstruction.

Price when rated: $170; 15-day free trial

Pros

  • Excellent text extraction
  • Side-by-side results comparison
  • Basic PDF features

Cons

  • Document re-creation is behind the curve

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