Most of us are only just hearing about OCR. Yet for the select few that have believed in the benefits that the technology brings, the significant commercial potential that the technology has promised for years has now come to the forefront of our commercial thinking.

From improving productivity by facilitating fast and accurate data retrieval, enhancing business operations to trimming costs associated with copying, printing, and shipping of paper documents, and, obviously, eradicating mistakes, document and receipt recognition technologies have solved historic inefficiencies that have plagued businesses for decades.

Now with more and more businesses becoming savvy of the technology and how it can improve performance, especially as the whole world moves to a remote or hybrid working model, the question on many decision-makers lips is what is the best free-to-try OCR API to test on my software or app?

If you want to find out the answer to this pressing question, we have the answer for you. All you need to do is to continue reading.

What Are Some Available Free OCR APIs For Scanning Receipts?

Google Cloud Vision API

When considering what technology to integrate into your life, either personal or professional, most of us shoot for the big guns. That in mind, it should come as little surprise that Google has its own API – Cloud Vision.

Google Cloud Vision API gives developers access to image recognition, processing, and analysis tools. Capable of identifying up to fifty different languages, including mixed language text, and deciphering written handwriting, this document and receipt parsing API is not without its attributes.

However, Google Cloud Vision API may be free-to-use but features on the free plan are limited and once you start using the paid plan, costs quickly escalate.

But before you make up your mind that this is the OCR API for you, let us ask you one question: does being the biggest make you the best? Surely, a more specialised service offering is likely to be more polished, right?

Abbyy FineReader

One of the most established names in the document management and OCR marketplace, Abbyy FineReader offers a seemingly comprehensive solution for both commercial and personal application.

However, experience doesn’t necessarily reflect prowess. They’ll always be completing businesses who will offer a better, more affordable, or customer-centric product.

That being said, Abbyy FineReader does offer suite of document and receipt recognition tools. From the ability to scan and digitize paper documents and receipts, converting them to pdfs, Microsoft Office, and other file formats to the opportunity to annotate digital documents, the API does have some positive attributes.

However, Abbyy doesn’t have the most modern software and the OCR API leaves a lot to be desired, but it is still accepted by customers who are willing to pay $199.99 for the Standard version which offers a one-time perpetual licence for OCR conversions and pdf edits. Upgrade to the Corporate version adds the capability of comparing documents and performing automated conversions in batches. Although this costs $299.99.

Of course, you can integrate the service for free, but access to essential features comes at a cost that might deter some small businesses.


The answer to the question of what the best free-to-try OCR API is to test my software or app is quite simple – Tabscanner.

Why? Tabscanner has invested an immeasurable amount of time and effort to design a document and receipt parsing API that’s leaps and bounds ahead of the competition. This is demonstrated by the prowess of our technology.

For starters, we’re proud to have developed the most accurate receipt OCR API. Our intelligent capture recognition (ICR) understands receipt fields at human levels of intelligence. We have developed the only receipt OCR technology capable of returning accurate line items from any POS receipt in the world.

Such is our reputation we have been chosen as the proof-of-concept (POC) vendor of choice for a large expense management and accounts payable solutions provider whose application services more than 50,000 small and medium businesses around the world.

Not only that, but a large UK retail specialist chose us to replace Google Vision after they felt that the service wasn’t meeting their expectations because the template system of Google Vision’s line extraction did not create accurate digital copies of receipt documents.

Need further convincing that Tabscanner is the best free-to-use OCR API? We offer a range of packages tailored to your needs, each of which has a scaled range of innovative features to meet your requirements.

The free package offers a whopping 500 test credits in the free trial plan. You also get the most accurate AI-driven OCR API, temporary API key, and analytics dashboard.

However, choose our enterprise package and you get these features plus a plethora of others, including custom credit options, fixed and flexi credits, full enterprise support, unlimited data fields and formats, customised payment, and billing, even a dedicated server and much, much more.

The Best Free-to-Try OCR API

The question of which is the best free-to-try OCR API isn’t really a question. It’s Tabscanner. Not only do you get the most accurate OCR API on the market – one that has usurped Google Vision as the provider of choice for a large UK retail specialist, but you also get a range of customizations, and scalable pricing options depending on your needs.

Want an OCR API that will add great value to your business? Tabscanner wins hands down.