Camera apps

Useful camera apps scan documents and old photos, enhance Zoom teaching


One of the best things about a smartphone is the way you can download a new app and completely change its functionality. Here are several notable camera apps that can be very useful for scanning documents, old photos, and even remote lectures and presentations.

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Google stack

Got a stack of papers you wanted to scan?

Google’s latest experimental app is called Stack. It’s a quick and easy way to not only scan pages, but also organize them in seconds.

Just open the app and point your phone’s camera at a document or upload a photo from your camera roll. In seconds, Stack will transform the page into a high-quality searchable PDF.

It will then place the page in a suggested category based on its content. Categories include bills, banking, medical care, and more.

Need to find something later? Just look in the category or enter a keyword to search for the content of your documents.

This app is brand new and available for free on Android only. For an iOS alternative, check out Scannable or Adobe Scan, but you won’t get the search functionality.

Preview app

Distance education and presentations on Zoom will never be the same again thanks to an app called Overviewer.

“This is a very virtual Zoom version of the overhead projectors that, at least, I grew up using all the time,” said Charlie Chapman, a software developer who created the app.

He did this after seeing his wife, a kindergarten teacher, struggle with an appropriate setup to present his Zoom lessons to students.

The free iOS app turns your iPhone or iPad camera into a viewer for Zoom and other video conferencing software.

“It will show whatever is on your cameras. So if you set it up, you can point your phone at a piece of paper and you can show what you’re writing, ”explained Chapman, whom I spoke with via Skype from his home office in St. Louis. .

You can pair the Overviewer app with a stand like the $ 80 HoverBar Duo from accessory maker TwelveSouth. It will allow you to freely position your phone or iPad so as to facilitate video sharing. For something cheaper, there are plenty of gooseneck brackets on Amazon.

“Seems to be [Overviewer has] found a niche of people who found it to be really useful and for it to make me really happy, ”Chapman said.

PhotoScan by Google Photos

Need a quick and easy way to scan an old photo? Check out PhotoScan through Google Photos.

The app has been around for a while, but no one seems to know it.

It uses AI to help digitize photos so that they look great even if they are an image of an image.

The app guides you through the process of scanning a photo using your smartphone’s camera. It takes multiple snapshots of the same photo, then merges them together to eliminate any glare.

The result: a quick and easy digital copy that you can share with your friends or post instantly on social media.

PhotoScan is free or iOS and Android.

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