In this article, we will introduce our top 10 Optical Character Recognition (OCR) APIs to help you choose and access the right engine according to your data.
Optical Character Recognition, also called OCR, is a technology that recognizes text within a digital image. The basic process of OCR involves examining the text of a document and translating the characters into code that can be used for data processing. OCR engines are made up of a combination of hardware and software that is used to convert physical documents into machine-readable text. The hardware is used to copy or read the text, while the software usually does the advanced processing.
OCR traces its roots back to telegraphy. On the eve of the First World War, physicist Emanuel Goldberg invented a machine that could read characters and convert them into telegraph code. In the 1920s, he went a step further and created the first electronic document retrieval system.
Early versions of OCR had to be trained with images of each character and were limited to recognizing one font at a time. In the 1970s, inventor Ray Kurzweil commercialized “omni-font OCR”, which could process text printed in almost any font.
OCR Technology became popular in the early 1990s while attempting to digitize historic newspapers. In the early 2000s, OCR became available online as a cloud-based service, accessible via desktop and mobile applications. Today, there’s a host of OCR service providers offering technology (often accessible via APIs) capable of recognizing most characters and fonts to a high level of accuracy.
ABBYY FineReader PDF is an optical character recognition (OCR) application developed by ABBYY, with support for PDF file editing. ABBYY allows the conversion of image documents (photos, scans, PDF files) and screen captures into editable electronic formats. The API even has the ability to recognize text in context, providing more accurate results compared to traditional OCR technologies.
API4AI's OCR technology can be used for various purposes such as document scanning, text recognition from images, and extracting information from invoices, receipts, and so forth. It offers high accuracy, easy integration, and fast processing time to help businesses automate their processes and reduce manual data entry tasks.
Amazon Rekognition can detect text in images and videos. It can then convert the detected text into machine-readable text. You can use machine-readable text detection in images to implement solutions. Amazon Rekognition is designed to detect words in English. It might also detect words in other languages that use these characters, but it doesn't detect diacritics and other characters.
Base64.ai is a cloud-based artificial intelligence service that instantly and accurately extracts text, data, handwriting, photos, and signatures from all types of documents, including IDs, driver licenses, passports, visas, receipts, invoices, forms, and hundreds of other document types worldwide. In seconds, Base64.ai discerns the document's type, extracts the relevant information, verifies the results, and integrates them into the customer's systems.
Using Deep Learning algorithms, this technology accurately identifies and extracts text from various image formats. It can be tailored to specific needs, including font recognition and identification of particular characters, through API customization. Furthermore, it supports the recognition of text in multiple languages, making it suitable for a wide range of applications.
Clarifai's OCR API is easy to integrate into existing systems and provides fast processing time to help automate data entry and improve overall efficiency.
Cloudmersive OCR API effortlessly transforms scanned documents or photos into digital text in over 90 languages using Machine Learning. Responses can be obtained in JSON, text, and XML formats, ensuring seamless integration with diverse systems. Cloudmersive also provides comprehensive API documentation and support, along with scalable Computer Vision and Natural Language Processing (NLP) APIs, making it simple for developers to get started with OCR technology.
Among its features, Google Cloud Vision provides OCR services. Their OCR allows users to convert printed or handwritten text from scanned documents or images into digital text that can be searched, edited, or analyzed. Additionally, the OCR engine can automatically recognize various languages, fonts, and layouts, and can also handle low-quality images and degraded text. The extracted text can then be obtained in a machine-readable format such as JSON, making it easy to integrate with other applications and systems.
Computer Vision Read API is Microsoft Azure's latest OCR technology which can extract printed and handwritten text from images in multiple languages, including digits and currency symbols. It's optimized to extract text from text-heavy images and multi-page PDF documents with mixed languages. It supports detecting both printed and handwritten text in the same image or document.
OCR.Space provides a free OCR API that is easy to use, requiring no technical skills to get started. The API can handle large volumes of image processing, making it suitable for businesses with high-volume document scanning requirements.
SentiSight.ai provides an OCR API that can be customized to recognize specific fonts, characters and layouts, making it suitable for a wide range of use cases. The API also supports text recognition in multiple languages, including Asian characters. In addition, it offers fast processing times, enabling real-time text extraction from images.
Tesseract is an OCR engine with the capacity to recognize over 100 languages and handle unicode. The API can be trained to recognize additional languages and can be used directly or through its API for extracting printed text from images. In addition, it can be used for recognizing text in large documents with existing layout analysis, or combined with an external text detector for single text line recognition.
You can use OCR in numerous fields. Here are some examples of common use cases:
These are just a few examples of OCR APIs uses case. This technology can be leveraged in diverse applications to digitize and extract structured information from physical documents, facilitating organization, search and retrieval of information.
Companies and developers from a wide range of industries (Social Media, Retail, Health, Finances, Law, etc.) use Eden AI’s unique API to easily integrate OCR tasks in their cloud-based applications, without having to build their own solutions.
Eden AI offers multiple AI APIs on its platform amongst several technologies: Text-to-Speech, Language Detection, Sentiment Analysis, Summarization, Question Answering, Data Anonymization, Speech recognition, and so forth.
We want our users to have access to multiple OCR engines and manage them in one place so they can reach high performance, optimize cost and cover all their needs. There are many reasons for using multiple APIs:
You need to set up a provider API that is requested if and only if the main OCR API does not perform well (or is down). You can use confidence score returned or other methods to check provider accuracy.
After the testing phase, you will be able to build a mapping of providers performance based on the criteria you have chosen (languages, fields, etc.). Each data that you need to process will then be sent to the best OCR API.
You can choose the cheapest OCR provider that performs well for your data.
This approach is required if you look for extremely high accuracy. The combination leads to higher costs but allows your AI service to be safe and accurate because OCR APIs will validate and invalidate each other for each piece of data.
Eden AI has been made for multiple AI APIs use. Eden AI is the future of AI usage in companies. Eden AI allows you to call multiple AI APIs.
You can see Eden AI documentation here.
The Eden AI team can help you with your OCR integration project. This can be done by :