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Home > Convert Image to Text > How to Convert Handwriting to Text (Updated for 2024)

How to Convert Handwriting to Text (Updated for 2024)

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2024-05-22 13:36:15 • Filed to: Convert Image to Text • Proven solutions

Is there a program to convert handwriting to text with ease and satisfaction? Sure, you can convert handwriting to text by using an OCR tool. This article will show you 5 ways to convert handwriting to text on PC, mobile phone or online with step-by-step guide.

Best Handwriting to Text Converter for Windows/Mac

Actually, the process of converting handwriting to text needs to perform OCR (Optical Character Recognition) tool that can convert handwriting into editable text. PDFelement enables OCR to convert handwriting in an image to searchable or editable text, and it can recognize 20+ languages. Moreover, it supports Windows, Mac OS, iOS, and Android systems, you can select any of the platforms to use.


● Able to convert handwriting to editable text in PDF as well as searchable text.

● Supports Area OCR to improve accuracy.

● Multiple output formats. Convert images to editable Word, Excel, and more.

Batch OCR to process multiple files at the same time.

● Receive regular updates from a resilient team of professionals.


● You need to install the application on your device.

● Offers free trial.

How to Convert Handwriting to Text?

Step 1. Load a Handwritten File

Click the "+" icon to add a handwriting file, for example, an image of your handwriting note.

open handwriting file

Step 2. Convert Handwriting to Text

Once the the handwriting file is opened, click "Tools" > "OCR" button to open the OCR dialog window. If you do not have downloaded the OCR tool yet, please download it first.

convert handwriting to text

After launching OCR, you can select the "Scan to editable text" option, select the OCR range, and choose the language of your handwriting content to perform OCR. Finally, tap on the "Apply" button.

ocr handwriting to text

Step 3. Export Handwriting Text

After performing OCR, the handwriting text will be converted to digital text, which you can edit or copy. Also, you can click the "File" > "Export to" button to save the handwritten text in a document(Word, TXT, etc.).

export handwriting text

Tip: Before converting, you can also click the "Edit" button to edit the content as you want. Learn more about how to edit PDFs here.

Note: To convert handwriting to text, you need to write them in a formal font like the printed word. Even Adobe Acrobat can't convert handwriting to text. If you want to convert informal handwriting, you can try ICR - Intelligent Character Recognition software.

How to Scan Handwriting to Text

To convert handwriting to text, one of the best ways is to scan the handwriting paper into documents and then use an OCR tool to convert it to text. With PDFelement, you can create PDF documents from scanners and convert the document to editable text with OCR.

Step 1. Connect Your Scanner

After launching PDFelement, click the "File" > "Create" > "From Scanner" button.

scan handwriting to text

Step 2. Scan Handwriting to Text

Now in the pop-up window, you can select your scanner to connect with. You can also opt to optimize scanned PDFs. After setting as you need, you can click the "Scan" button. Finally, the scanned PDF will be opened directly in the PDFelement once the scan has been completed. 

scan handwriting to text

If you have selected the "Recognize Text (OCR)" option in Step 2, then the text in the created PDF file is already editable. Then you can choose to convert the file to a .txt file using the "To Text" button in the "Convert" tab.

how to change handwriting

The Best Software to Convert Handwriting to Text

PDFelement is one of the main programs that can change the way you work with PDF files. You can always contact the development team if there is any question. With 24/7 support, you will get the best and the most advanced outcome.

PDFelement has an intuitive interface and will make sure that novice users can also make use of it. With PDFelement, it is easy to ensure that the encrypted PDF files are also opened with ease. You can also protect the files so that no unauthorized access can alter or harm the file's contents. With PDFelement, your PDF files are always safe and secure.

  • You can perform the most basic functions using this program. It includes opening, creating, and editing PDF files with ease.
  • The program can also be used to remove, move, rotate, or compress PDF files.
  • The OCR of the program is the best of all. It makes sure that the images are converted to editable text while the text is unlocked.
  • You can insert page numbers, bates numbering, and organize PDF pages by using this program.

Best Handwriting to Text Converter Apps on Mobile

The most convenient way to convert handwriting to text is by using your mobile phone. PDFelement for iOS allows you to scan and convert handwritten documents from image to text available for editing and easy sharing.

PDFelement for iOS comes with a scanner for you to scan handwritten notes with a phone camera to PDF documents. After that, you can use its OCR tool to convert the scanned document to editable or searchable text.

PDFelement also offers features including text editing, and file conversion so that you can edit the scanned paper document and save it to Word, Excel, or image formats.


● Extract text from scanned PDFs.

● Convert Handwritten paper documents to PDF, Word, TXT, JPG, or Excel files.

● Support 22 different languages.

● Read PDF with markup tools and comments.

● Add eletronic signature.


● Only available for iOS devices.

handwriting to text app

Part 3. How to Convert Handwriting to Text Online with OCR

If you don't have your regular computer to hand or you're using a different device, you can also perform OCR on a number of different websites that provide such services for free or as a paid feature. Here are three of the best tools on the market for this.

#1: Wondershare HiPDF

Wondershare HiPDF is a free online OCR conversion utility with a whole bunch of other useful modules to convert files to and from PDF, secure files with passwords, optimize file size, edit PDFs, and a lot more. The OCR function here works in a similar way to PDFelement so you'll easily get the hang of the tool. Using this powerful online utility, you can convert your scanned PDFs to a number of different formats such as DOCX, PPTX, XLSX, EPUB, TXT, and Pages. Additionally, you can also convert image files containing text elements into editable formats such as Word or text files. For instance, take a photo of a document, upload it to HiPDF, and convert it into an editable text format in seconds.

Although HiPDF runs on your browser, much of the processing is actually done on Wondershare's cloud servers, which means you can even OCR large files with this service. But the best part is the accuracy and speed with which OCR conversions are done - and it supports over 20 different languages, too!

Steps to Convert Handwriting to Text Online (or to Word Files) using HiPDF

Step 1: Head to the HiPDF OCR webpage on the website.

Step 2: Drag and drop your files or use the Choose File button on the HiPDF web interface.

hipdf online ocr

Step 3: Click OCR Setting, choose the language and output file type and hit Submit.

hipdf online ocr setting

Step 4: Finally, click the Convert button and wait for the file to be processed.

download pdf document

Step 5: You can now click Download to save the file to a local folder or click Start Over to process another file - you can also save the processed file directly to your Dropbox or Box account.

Note: The OCR module can be used free of charge for single files. To use Batch OCR, you must have a Pro account, which is quite affordable and very convenient for handling heavier PDF workflows.


● Convenient access on any device - Mac, Windows, Linux, iOS, Android

● Supports all major browsers - Edge, Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, etc.

● Fast and accurate OCR processing - minimal post-OCR clean-up required

● Multiple output file options - all major document formats are supported

● Fetch files from and save files to cloud services like Dropbox and Box

● Free for processing single files of up to 10 pages or 50MB

● Access to a ton of other useful PDF and image tools


● Batch OCR requires a subscription but there are affordable options

● No option to choose downsampling rate - default setting only

● No option to create searchable PDF - default is editable PDF output

#2: Smallpdf

Smallpdf is another great utility to perform OCR on your PDF and other files. The PDF file conversion tool is actually integrated with OCR so you won't find a separate module for this. For some users, this may be a turn-off because they'll assume that there's no OCR capability on the Smallpdf online platform. However, once you begin the 'PDF to' file conversion process on the PDF Converter web page, you'll see OCR as an option.

For instance, you can convert a scanned PDF to Word, and once the file is uploaded, you'll see a basic option to convert it into an image-based Word file and a Pro option to use OCR to convert it into an editable Word document. Unfortunately, you can't use the Pro service for free since it requires a subscription. The problem is, it's not as affordable as other options but the good part is that you get a free 7-day trial during which you can fully test out the feature to see if OCR is accurate and so on.

Steps to Convert Handwriting to Text Online (or to Word Files) using HiPDF

Assuming you've signed up to the platform and you are on your trial period or have chosen to upgrade to the Pro version, here are the steps you'll need to follow to convert handwriting to text online using Smallpdf.

Step 1: Go to the URL for PDF to Word conversion on the Smallpdf website.

smallpdf online ocr

Step 2: Drag and drop your file to the web UI or click the button to upload it, then click the option that says 'To Word'.

smallpdf convert handwriting to text

Step 3: Once it's uploaded, you'll see two options - Convert to Word and Convert to Editable Word - choose the second option.

smallpdf ocr pdf

Step 4: Select the language that you require and click the Choose Language button.

Step 5: The converted file can be downloaded on the next page once the process is complete.


● Easy-to-use interface with simple controls

● Extensive tools for other types of conversion and PDF management

● Fast online service to convert handwriting to text


● No free OCR option but you can use the free trial period (credit card required)

● Conversion quality is about average

#3: Adobe Acrobat Online

Adobe also offers an online PDF toolkit aside from its core desktop products. Unfortunately, you won't find the OCR option in the toolkit itself but if you dig around a little, you'll see that there's an ‘Export PDF' online service from Adobe that uses OCR to convert handwriting to text online. As you can imagine, this can be confusing for many users because it doesn't tell you outright that OCR is available in the Export PDF module. Moreover, you'll need to first set up an Adobe account to access this feature. You can also authorize the site using your Google credentials, which makes it a little more convenient if you don't want to set up a separate login with Adobe.

However, once you figure out how to get this done, you can save the converted document to Document Cloud or even edit it directly with Microsoft Word Online, which is integrated into the Adobe Export PDF process flow. That essentially means you can convert a scanned handwritten PDF document into an editable Word file and then edit it natively with Word online. For many users, this is a great way to complete the entire process online without having to download and install anything. Let's look at how it works:

Steps to Convert Handwriting to Text (Word) with Adobe Export PDF Online

acrobat online ocr feature

Step 1: Go to the URL for Adobe's Export PDF function and sign in - you should be able to see a prompt when you upload a file.

Step 2: Drag a file into the web interface or click Select a File.

Step 3: Click to export the file as an editable Word document or one of the other formats supported.

Step 4: You can either save your file to a local folder or Document Cloud, and you can also choose to edit it with Word Online.


● Excellent OCR quality with minimal proofreading after processing

● Convenient online editing of your converted files

● Various other options such as saving to the cloud or converting it back to PDF


● Sign-up is required before you can convert handwriting to text online

● Limited to one document (trial) only - subscription required to process more files

FAQs - Convert Handwriting to Text

1. Is there a way to convert handwriting to text?

Yes. Apps and programs with OCR functions can recognize handwritten words and convert them to digital text. You can use apps like PDFelement, Evernote, Onenote to complete the task.

2. Can essay shortener tools be used for academic writing?

To convert a handwritten image to text, you can use PDFelement. Import the image to PDFelement, the program will recognize this is a scanned image and prompt you to "Perform OCR" to turn the image into editable text. Click "Perform OCR" to start the conversion. Read How to Convert Picture to Text.

3. Can Google Docs convert handwriting to text?

Yes. To begin with, you need a scanner to turn your handwritten note into a PDF doc. Then add the scanned PDF to Google Drive, select the file and click Open with > Google Docs. This will turn the handwriting into editable text.

4. How to convert handwriting to text in batch?

The Batch Process feature of PDFelement allows you to perform various tasks in bulk. One of the key features of Batch OCR is the ability to process files containing text in various languages. This multilingual support means you can add a mix of languages to the queue and select all the languages that apply in the sidebar panel and PDFelement will automatically recognize each language and convert that into a corresponding editable or searchable file. /p>

The steps to perform Batch OCR are very simple:

Step 1: Launch PDFelement and click the Batch Process button in the toolbar.

Step 2: Use the Add Files button to add several files or entire folders to the queue.

Step 3: Once your files are uploaded, select the OCR language(s), Output downsampling rate, and the type of OCR (searchable text vs editable text) - you'll also have the option to append characters to the output files or add Bates Stamping/Numbering.

Step 4: Click Apply and choose the destination folder for your output files - click Save.

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author name

Margarete Cotty

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