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Top 5 OCR (Optical Character Recognition) APIs List

    The roots of OCR are traced back to telegraphy. It was on the eve of world war when a physicist invented a device that could convert characters into telegraph code.

    This technology became popular in the 1900s during the digitization of historical documents. Today, the best OCR API helps to [perform fonts and character recognition with higher accuracy.

    Since businesses are shifting to the digital world, we must realize the importance of OCR APIs. They must transcribe and scan texts in files, invoices, pictures, and receipts.

    This article will explain the 5 OCR APIs that can be highly helpful to our businesses. So what are you waiting for? Let's dig into this article.

    What Is OCR?

    First of all, we must know the abbreviation of OCR. It refers to "Optical character recognition." OCR is a highly useful machine vision capability. It helps us to extract text and perform text recognition from pictures. The purpose of optical character recognition performance is to store the data elsewhere.

    An OCR helps us to convert an image into machine-readable text format. OCR has helped many businesses, so we can call it a useful business solution.

    After the automation of data extraction, we can use it for searching and editing purposes. Here are some benefits of OCR for businesses:

    • Improved fecundity
    • Reallotment of physical storage space
    • Error reductions
    • Quick data processing with fewer resources
    • Manual data entry removal

    Now that we have learned about OCR and its benefits, let's take a look at the best OCR API. Our business might need the best OCR solution, so we must have some reliable options. So let's take a look at them.


    What Are Some Best OCR APIs?

    => Microsoft computer vision

    We use this OCR API to know if our images contain faces or some mature content. Let's look at its features, accuracy, and pricing details.


    • It is a comprehensive set of computer vision tools.
    • It helps in Generating smart image thumbnails.
    • Microsoft computer vision recognizes celebrities in images.
    • It describes the content of images using artificial intelligence.
    • Estimation of dominant and accent colors.
    • It describes the image with complete English sentences.


    We get two endpoints in this image. These are:

    1. OCR from an image
    2. OCR from an image URL.

    These endpoints have similar functionality with different resources.

    It gives us text divided into regions and works perfectly. The division is performed, so the user understands the structure of the text. We will have to write more code if we just need a large string of text, not the positioning.


    The free plan offers 5000 requests per month. Moreover, it has three more plans ranging from $19.90 to $199.90, with requests ranging from 15,000 to 200,000 per month.

    Microsoft computer vision

    => SemaMediaData

    When looking for a dedicated OCR platform, SemaMediaData always comes first. It is interesting to know that SemaMediaData only consists of a single function. And this function is image OCR. The interesting part of knowing is that it has a sister API. The sister API is known as Video OCR. Video OCR functions to extract text from videos.


    • Manually sets the language with each request.
    • It uses a set of sophisticated preprocessing.
    • Suitable for processing overlayed text.
    • Supports video OCR


    It works with a good accuracy level and handles the supplied images very well. We get an array of results. The array consists of a text region with the image's position.


    The free plan offers 100 requests per month. Moreover, the paid plans range from $50 to $500, with 2,200 to 40,000 requests per month.


    => Taggun

    This API key directly targets the scanning of receipts and invoices. It is a unique OCR API that recognizes the text as well as the structure of invoices.


    • It returns the processed data as like totalAmount, taxAmoumt, and merchantName.
    • Real-time image transcription
    • It gives us 82.26% accuracy in under 2.76 seconds.


    We get accuracy returned on each piece of information. If the score is 0, then the information is missing. But when there is the presence of information, it is mostly accurate.


    Taggun free plan gives 50 requests per month. While it offers a paid plan with 1000 requests per month, which costs $90.


    => Cloudmersive OCR API

    When looking for a nifty tool to extract simple information from images, Cloudmersive OCR API is useful. It works only when endpoint and that is only image to text. Let's take a look at its special features.


    • It returns all the text from the image in the form of one string.
    • Useful for transcribing a big blob of text.


    According to experiments, this API was found to be pretty accurate. Moreover, it transcribes most portions of the text in the document.


    The API comes with three paid plans and one free plan. The free plan gives 50,000 requests per month.


    => Google Cloud Vision

    It is another comprehensive machine vision platform. Just like other OCR APIs, it also offers some great features. Such as:


    • Face recognition
    • Image Labeling
    • Landmark Detection
    • Logo identification


    Google cloud vision can be very handy for highlighting specific words in a document. It returns word segments from the image that contain location and text. The response consists of the field textannotation. On the other hand, the field ullTextAnnotation gives a string containing the whole text in the image.

    The free plan offers 1000 requests per month. Moreover, it charges $1.5 for every 1000 requests after the free plan.

    Google Cloud Vision

    Final Thoughts

    Using OCR APIs can save us a lot more time than doing it all manually. It is important to know that OCR functions in three main steps; image preprocessing, character recognition, and post-processing.

    OCR APIs are great tools for integrating OCR technology into our business. Hence, cost saving is also ensured since we don't need to hire people for manual data processing.


    What Is an OCR API?

    An OCR API helps us to scan documents and images for multiple purposes. We extract text data from images with higher efficiency.

    Is Google OCR Free?

    Yes. It is 100% free.

    What Is Better Than Tesseract OCR?

    Google Cloud Vision API is better than Tesseract OCR.

    Is Tesseract OCR Good?

    We perform various image processing information internally before performing the actual OCR. It can be good in some cases, but sometimes, it might not be good enough, affecting the accuracy level.

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