Turn your phone into a PDF scanner

In just a few clicks, transform contracts and other docs into PDFs with your phone. Then save and share your important docs – all within Dropbox.

Scan, save and organise everything in Dropbox

Know exactly where your work receipts are at all times. Instantly find whiteboard brainstorming pics when you need them. And never lose another important business card in a coat pocket. When you use your phone as a PDF scanner, it’s easy to capture and upload important images and files to your Dropbox account. From there, Dropbox gives you smart naming and folder suggestions based on recent scans so you can organise your files intuitively.

Mobile device displaying a gallery of scanned PDFs

Keep all your files in order with OCR technology

Dropbox uses automatic optical character recognition (OCR) technology on scanned docs so you can easily search for the content later. Just input a term or keyword in the search bar and a short list of relevant content will appear. You can also search for content using a thumbnail preview. This makes it easy for you to find – and organise – all your PDF files within Dropbox.

Search results for clothing in Dropbox files

Do more than just scan documents

Scan documents into PDF files with a variety of filters in black and white, whiteboard or original. Your scans are auto-detected so you can smart crop and rotate them, too. Turn PDFs into multiple-page documents simply by adding additional pages and reordering them as you see fit. And you can always retake a scan without having to start over. When you’re done, choose where in Dropbox you want to save your scans with smart naming and smart folder suggestions.

Mobile device scanning a document

Turn paper files into digital collaborative tools

Free yourself from relying on physical folders and paper documents in the office. Transform your team into an organised, collaborative powerhouse with paperless, workable files that everyone can access in one place. Your teams can quickly scan documents to PDF, store and back up all their important work in Dropbox while enjoying greater mobility and the freedom to work from anywhere.

Collaborators commenting on a scanned document on Dropbox

Put the power of doc scanning in your pocket

Dropbox Scan is a free standalone iOS app that makes scanning documents simple, quick and easy. It uses five times less storage than the Dropbox mobile app and has a streamlined scanning experience, so you can turn any document into a high-quality PDF in seconds – directly from your phone.

A paper document, a PDF scanner that is ready to scan and an icon of a scanned PDF

Frequently asked questions

Yes, scanned PDFs can be edited with the Adobe + Dropbox integration. You can open PDFs from your Dropbox account in Adobe on your desktop and from the Adobe mobile app. Any changes made to Adobe files stored in your Dropbox account will sync automatically.

Yes, you can search for text in scanned PDFs if you store your files in a Dropbox Plus, Dropbox Professional or Dropbox Business Advanced and Enterprise account. Scanned PDFs for these accounts are automatically and securely scanned so you can search for the text found within them. 

It’s easy to organise PDFs in Dropbox.  And one of the best reasons to organise your PDFs within Dropbox is to both eliminate the risk of losing important documents and reduce physical clutter. Your files in Dropbox are sorted alphabetically by default but you can easily change the sorting method by clicking the column headers. You can then choose to sort your files by name, file type, size and modified date, and organise them as you like.

OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition. OCR is a technology used to 'read' text that appears in image files. OCR  indexes text in your images – including scanned documents, photos of a document, photos with signs or scenes with type or subtitles on an image – into text that you can then search for using a keyword or term. Currently, Dropbox uses OCR to recognise the text of your PDFs and most common image formats to make them searchable by their contents.

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