OCR is a feature that you normally find in scanning apps. Rarely do you find this as a stand alone feature that’s not meant to be used on scanned images. Not everyone needs to pick text off a scanned images. Sometimes you just need to pick text from an image, or some other item on your screen. Easy Onscreen OCR is a tool that lets you select anything on your screen, and extract text from it. The text can be copied to your clipboard and paste it anywhere you want.
Easy Onscreen OCR isn’t free. You can try it out for three days for free. Unfortunately, this app doesn’t have a one-time purchase option. It has a subscription model that lets you subscribe to it on a monthly, half-yearly, and yearly basis.
Text from image
Download, install, and run Easy Onscreen OCR. It runs in the system tray. Click its icon and select Capture from the context menu. When the cursor’s color changes, you can click and drag your mouse over whatever it is on your screen you want to copy text from.
For a test, I dragged it out over the Disk Management tool on Windows 10.
Click the OCR button on the app’s little fly-out window and it will scan the image for text. Once it finishes scanning, it will switch over to the Text tab where you can see text that it has copied.
There’s no formatting applied to the text so if you’re copying text from an image and it happens to be in a table, or arranged in a text cloud, the detected text will not reflect that. It does make sure that spaces and line breaks aren’t missed and since it works for items on your screen, there is little chance of error.
The app also works really well with handwritten items. If you have a picture of handwritten text, chances are, the app will be able to scan it for text and allow you to copy it. Open the app and go to the Image tab. Drag & drop the image you want to scan text from, and the app will scan it.
The app works exceptionally well and while it may not be free, if your work requires you to pick text out from images a lot, it might be worth its price and then some. It’s available for both Windows and Mac, and it supports customizable hotkeys, multiple image formats, including exporting to PDF.