Comparison of optical character recognition software

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This comparison of optical character recognition software includes:

  • OCR engines, that do the actual character identification
  • Layout analysis software, that divide scanned documents into zones suitable for OCR
  • Graphical interfaces to one or more OCR engines
  • Software development kits that are used to add OCR capabilities to other software (e.g. forms processing applications, document imaging management systems, e-discovery systems, records management solutions)
Sortable table
Name Founded year Latest stable version Release year License Online Windows Mac OS X Linux BSD Programming language SDK? Languages Fonts Output Formats Notes
Google Drive OCR or Google Cloud Vision 2015 Free Yes Browser Browser Browser Unknown Unknown Yes 200+ All fonts text Google blog post [1] [2]
Tesseract 1985 4.0.0 2018 Apache No Yes Yes Yes Yes C++, C Yes 100+[3] Any printed font Text, hOCR,[4] PDF, others with different user interfaces[5] or the API Created by Hewlett-Packard; under further development by Google[6]
ABBYY FineReader 1989 14 2017-01-25 Proprietary Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes C/C++ Yes 192[7] ? DOC, DOCX, XLS, XLSX, PPTX, RTF, PDF, HTML, CSV, TXT, ODT, DjVu, EPUB, FB2[8] ABBYY also supplies SDKs for embedded and mobile devices. Professional, Corporate and Site License Editions for Windows, Express Edition for Mac.[9]
E-aksharayan 2010 Yes No Yes No 14 RTF, TXT, BRL
Asprise OCR SDK 1998 15 2015 Proprietary Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Java, C#,VB.NET, C/C++/Delphi Yes 20+[10] ? Plain text, searchable PDF, XML[11] Java, C#, VB.NET, C/C++/Delphi SDKs for OCR and Barcode recognition on Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and Unix.[12]
AnyDoc Software 1989 ? ? Proprietary No Yes No No No VBScript ? ? ? Works with structured, semi-structured, and unstructured documents.
CuneiForm 1996 1.1 2011-04-19 BSD variant No Yes Yes Yes Yes C/C++ Yes 28 Any printed font HTML, hOCR, native, RTF, TeX, TXT[13] Enterprise-class system, can save text formatting and recognizes complicated tables of any structure
Dynamsoft OCR SDK 2003 8.2 2012 Proprietary Yes Yes No No No C/C++ Yes 40+[14] ? PDF, TXT
OmniPage 1970s 19.2 2015 Proprietary Yes Yes Yes Yes No C/C++, C#[15] Yes 125[16] Machine and handprinted fonts DOC/DOCX XLS/XLSX PPTX RTF PDF PDF/A Searchable PDF HTML Text XML ePUB MP3 Product of Nuance Communications
Microsoft Office OneNote 2007 2011 ? 2007 Proprietary No Yes No No No ? ? ? ?
GOCR 2000 0.52[17] 2018-10-15 GPL Yes[18] Yes Yes Yes Yes C ? 20+ ?
Ocrad ? 0.26[19] 2017-03-31 GPL Yes No Yes Yes Yes C++ Yes Latin alphabet ? Command line
SmartScore 1991 10.5.8 2015-07 Proprietary No Yes Yes No No ? ? ? ? For musical scores
Microsoft Office Document Imaging ? Office 2007 2007 Proprietary No Yes No No No ? ? ? ? Uses OmniPage[citation needed]
Puma.NET ? ? 2009-10-29 BSD No Yes No No No C# Yes 28 Any printed font .NET OCR SDK based on Cognitive Technologies' CuneiForm recognition engine. Wraps Puma COM server and provides simplified API for .NET applications
ReadSoft ? ? ? Proprietary No Yes No No No ? ? ? ? Scan, capture and classify business documents such as invoices, forms and purchase orders integrated with business processes.
Scantron ? ? ? Proprietary No Yes No No No ? ? ? ? For working with localized interfaces, corresponding language support is required.
OCRFeeder 2009-03 0.8.1 2014-12-22 GPL No No No Yes No Python ? ? ? Features a full user interface and has a command-line tool for automatic operations. Has its own segmentation algorithm but uses system-wide OCR engines like Tesseract or Ocrad
OCRopus 2007 1.3.3 2017-12-16 Apache No No Yes Yes Yes Python ? All languages using Latin script (other languages can be trained) Normal Latin script and Fraktur (other scripts can be trained) TXT, hOCR[20], PDF[21] Pluggable framework under active development, used for Google Books
Name Founded year Latest stable version Release year License Online Windows Mac OS X Linux BSD Programming language SDK? Languages Fonts Output Formats Notes


An analysis of the accuracy and reliability of the OCR packages Google Docs OCR, Tesseract, ABBYY FineReader, and Transym, employing a dataset including 1227 images from 15 different categories concluded Google Docs OCR and ABBYY to be performing better than others. [22]


  1. ^ Dmitriy Genzel; Ashok Popat (May 6, 2015). "Paper to Digital in 200+ languages".
  2. ^ Ashok Popat (Sep 4, 2015). "IEEE SPS: Optical Character Recognition for Most of the World's Languages".
  3. ^ Based on count of language training files for version 3.04. Available at the download page.
  4. ^ Usage explained in the Tesseract Readme and FAQ
  5. ^ Such as ODF with OCRFeeder
  6. ^ "GitHub - tesseract-ocr/tesseract: Tesseract Open Source OCR Engine (main repository)". Retrieved 2018-11-05.
  7. ^ "ABBYY FineReader 14: Technical Specifications". Retrieved 2017-02-23.
  8. ^ "ABBYY FineReader 11: Technical Specifications". Retrieved 2013-09-12.
  9. ^ "Top OCR Software". 2010-03-30. Retrieved 2013-09-12.
  10. ^ "Asprise OCR SDK Features". Retrieved 2014-06-21.
  11. ^ "Asprise Java OCR Library Features". Retrieved 2014-06-21.
  12. ^ "Asprise Java, C#/VB.NET OCR API". 2015-11-19. Retrieved 2015-11-19.
  13. ^ Debian manual page for Cuneiform for Linux version 1.1.0
  14. ^ "OCR SDK Language Packages Download". Retrieved 2013-09-12.
  15. ^ "OmniPage CSDK - OCR Document Capture Toolkit | Document Imaging & OCR". Nuance. Archived from the original on 2010-08-24. Retrieved 2013-09-12.
  16. ^ "OmniPage Standard Document Conversion". Nuance. Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  17. ^ "GOCR Homepage". Retrieved 2018-10-17.
  18. ^ "GOCR". Retrieved 2013-09-12.
  19. ^ Diaz, Antonio (2015-04-16). "GNU Ocrad 0.26 released" (Mailing list). info-gnu.
  20. ^ OCRopus includes the ocropus-hocr tool which produces hOCR from the recognition results.
  21. ^ In combination with the hocr-tools
  22. ^ Assefi, Mehdi (2016-12-01). "OCR as a Service: An Experimental Evaluation of Google Docs OCR, Tesseract, ABBYY FineReader, and Transym". Research gate. Retrieved 2019-01-31.