Office Lens App Now Works With Office 365's School, Work Accounts

Microsoft's intelligent pocket scanner app now links with Office 365 educational and work accounts.

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Office Lens, Microsoft's scanner app for capturing information on physical documents and receipts, now connects to Office 365 school and work accounts. Available now at Apple's App Store, version 1.2 of the app for iPhone enhances the app's cloud storage and collaboration capabilities for users whose organizations are invested in Microsoft's Office 365 productivity ecosystem.

"In addition to saving Office Lens-enhanced scans to your personal OneNote or OneDrive account, you can now sign in with your Office 365 work or school account and save documents to OneNote, Word and PowerPoint or as an image or PDF file on OneDrive for Business," wrote Microsoft's OneNote group in an Oct. 26 blog post. "You can then easily share your documents with colleagues or students in the secure and reliable Office 365 environment."

Built-in Office 365 support also helps organizations combat shadow IT, asserted the company. "IT pros and admins will appreciate that Office Lens for iPhone enables users to protect their data in OneDrive for Business, ensuring the same high level of security and compliance provided for all enterprise data in Office 365."

Dubbed a pocket scanner by Microsoft, Office Lens digitizes documents, enabling users to capture information as they encounter it in the real world. Users can also search, copy and edit captured content using optical character recognition (OCR).

A whiteboard mode automatically trims the image and corrects for shadows and glare. Similarly, the app's document mode trims and adjusts the image so that it approximates a document captured by a traditional flatbed scanner.

Microsoft envisions that teachers will use the updated app to snap "classroom brainstorm sessions from a whiteboard or chalkboard into OneNote and then search by keyword with the Office Lens optical character recognition (OCR) so that you can edit or copy text into other documents or email." At work, the company suggests using Office Lens to distribute "contracts or documents requiring signatures and store for easy retrieval by multiple coworkers from any device," among other uses.

As part of the refresh, Microsoft has added business card support to all versions of the app.

"This feature, now available on all three phone platforms [Android, iPhone and Windows Phone], lets you save a scanned business card as a virtual contact file (VCF) directly to your tablet or phone contacts. You can also extract business card content into the 'Contacts' section of OneNote for easy storage and sharing," wrote the company's bloggers. Currently, capturing business cards works best in English, German and Spanish, but Microsoft is working on extending support to more languages.

In addition to Office Lens, Microsoft has added support for Office 365 school and work accounts to the OneNote Clipper browser add-on.

"The OneNote Clipper lets you quickly capture any webpage to OneNote, where you can easily edit, annotate or share it," stated Microsoft. "You can save the full page or a selection of the webpage to OneNote as an image, or you can clean up the webpage and send only the relevant text and images to your notebook."

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez is a contributor to eWEEK and the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Previously, he served as a managing editor for the network of...