I have been using my iPhone to scan documents for a long time now. My App of choice is Scanner Pro. However, no matter what phone you have or which App you like, the problems of scanning documents are universal. You have to deal with lighting and positioning the document in just the right spot. Also if you’re scanning multiple pages chances are each one is going to be slightly off in terms of orientation, cropping, etc. due to not being able to hold the phone in the same spot for each page. Atiz, the makers of Scandock, want to solve this problem.
Scandock turns your smartphone into a document scanner
This combo hardware device and App will turn an ordinary iPhone or Android camera into a fast, efficient document scanner. I must admit that when I received my review unit that it was way more than I expected in terms of size, craftsmanship and design. I thought “whoa! They’re serious!” It took me about 5 minutes to put it together, plug it in and download the free Scandock App. Once I had the App, I placed a document on the bed and immediately noticed that they have a mat that’s designed to smooth out/hold down folded papers. I tapped the scan button on the App and like with any photo, it only takes a second and you’re on to the next page. Certainly faster than the fastest sheetfed scanners out there because it literally takes a second. It takes more time to position the paper than to do the scan. If you are scanning more than a few sheets then it will probably be on par with the time it takes to do it in a sheetfed scanner, but way faster than a flatbed scanner.
As you would expect, the App allows you to convert the document to PDF and share it. The one feature that blew me away was the multiple-doc feature. This feature allows you to place multiple items on the bed at once, such as several receipts or business cards, and it will auto-detect and scan each one as a separate document. I’ve not seen a smartphone App do that before. The built-in LED lights are the key to this device. By evenly lighting your documents you never have a shadow of YOU holding the phone over the document. There are trays for both iPhones and Android smartphones. You can even get it in Black or White.
The Bottom Line
Sounds great! Does everything that I would expect and more. What’s the downside? The only real downside to this solution is the asking price. At $499 (B.Y.O.D.) it will be out of reach for many and puts it in direct competition with other document scanners. Granted, other document scanners require a connection to a PC/Mac (which probably costs more than your smartphone) and perhaps the newer “Post PC” generation will see the benefit of this kind of solution.
Seeing is better; check out this video: