Top three best scanning pens

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    Discover the top three best scanning pens, what they can do, and how to get the most out of scanning printed media using text to speech readers.

    Top three best scanning pens

    People with dyslexia, ADHD, and similar reading difficulties may struggle to learn from standard textbooks and other written materials. They can’t always get the same enjoyment others can gain from reading novels. Naturally, these issues can lead to poor academic achievement, embarrassment, and even slow language comprehension development.

    However, assistive technology can offer a wide range of solutions for people with reading difficulties. Hardware devices and software tools can make reading more manageable and entertaining. This technology can help people become better auditory learners and not miss out on educational or professional development opportunities.

    Scanning pens are part of the accessibility technology suite for those with dyslexia and similar conditions.

    What is a scanning pen?

    Scanning pens or reading pens are gadgets with tiny sensors that can scan physical text and upload it to almost any device. No bigger than markers or highlighters, scanning pens offer assistive technology for people with reading or writing difficulties.

    They’re great time-savers and often feature text to speech technology to improve the user’s accessibility to various content sources. Many scanning pens can understand and translate multiple languages. That makes them even better for students, foreigners, and those wishing to learn a new language.

    The three best scanning pens

    You can find scanning pens nowadays on Amazon and any other online marketplace. However, without a proper buying guide or understanding of how these devices work, you risk spending a lot of money on limited functionality.

    The following scanning pens are often top picks for people who want to digitize physical documents or read text aloud.

    The C-Pen Reader

    One of the best pen scanners, the C-Pen Reader, is a dyslexia-friendly digital highlighter with Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology. It has a lightweight design and generous battery and is capable of processing text in multiple languages.

    This scanning pen supports English, French, and Spanish. It also has built-in dictionaries that help improve reading comprehension and literacy. It will read words aloud and function without extra apps and devices. Additionally, its many pronunciations and accents are among the most popular features. Unfortunately, it’s not the most accessible gadget when it comes to cost.

    The Scanmarker Air Pen Scanner

    The iOS, Android, macOS, and Windows-compatible Scanmarker Air Pen Scanner is a reputable device. It’s easy to use, has Bluetooth and OCR technologies, and has a scanning speed of 600 centimeters per minute. It works on font sizes between 6 and 24 point and performs admirably as an assistive device.

    Users can pair it with their smartphones or computers to quickly scan and upload physical text in a digital format. It’s great for capturing text from documents, business cards, textbooks, novels, magazines, and more. Unfortunately, it may leave marks on the pages and lose accuracy when scanning highlighted or underlined text.

    The Penpower WorldPenScan X Pen Scanner

    Users who want a more budget-friendly pen scanner may opt for the Penpower WorldPenScan X model. This text scanner works well with Mac and Windows and functions as a translator device with support for over 200 languages. It also extracts lines of text from screenshots and scans barcodes.

    Despite its compatibility with many apps like Microsoft Word, Excel, and others, this scanning pen isn’t the most accurate. It can make mistakes, especially regarding translations.

    Honorable mentions

    Although the aforementioned portable scanners are among our top picks, there are a couple of honorable mentions to consider.

    • Scanmarker – This OCR digital pen scanner can upload its scans to documents in many file formats. It is accurate and features Bluetooth technology, making it easy to get real-time uploads from printed text media.

    • Connect Pen – The Connect Pen is one of the best pen scanners for users who want extra speed. It boasts a scanning speed of around 12 centimeters per second.

    • C-Pen Exam Reader – The C-Pen Exam Reader wireless pen scanner supports additional languages like Italian, Spanish, and German. It also has a high-capacity battery despite its lightweight and slim design.

    • Irispen Air 7 – Users often appreciate the Irispen Air 7 as a translator pen scan reader. You can pair it with an iPhone or Android smartphone to scan text in 130 languages or instantly translate up to 50 languages.

    Speechify – Text to speech software that makes reading easier

    While scanning pens can work as language translators and scan text from printed media, they’re not always the best solution for digitizing documents and other materials. Text to speech readers like Speechify often have the best OCR technology and greater language processing accuracy.

    One of the biggest advantages of using Speechify is the app’s ability to generate human-like speech using artificial intelligence technology and machine learning algorithms. People with language comprehension issues will benefit more from accurate pronunciations and natural-sounding narrations of the scanned text.

    Moreover, Speechify’s text to speech works with physical and digital text and comes with text highlighting. It allows users to follow the text with the narration and control the playback speed to feel more comfortable.

    Try Speechify for free to experience a new way of accessing written content in a digital or physical format, from Gmail emails to hard-copy documents to magazines and more.

    FAQ

    Can Scanmarker scan handwriting?

    The Scanmarker Air can scan handwriting and mathematical formulas. Unfortunately, it uploads the scans as images and won’t read the writing aloud.

    Is there a pen that reads to you?

    The C-Pen Reader is a pen that can read aloud without using a third-party app and works well when you have quality earphones.

    What are some applications for a scanning pen?

    Scanning pens can translate or define words featured in their built-in dictionaries. They can pronounce scanned writing out loud. In addition, the devices can digitize documents or take notes from printed media. In some cases, they can improve the accessibility of users with reading disabilities by helping them decode and process the information on examination forms.

    Do digital pens work for photocopying?

    Some digital pens or reading pens can work as photocopiers, but they’re sub-optimal gadgets for this task.

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman is a dyslexia advocate and the CEO and founder of Speechify, the #1 text-to-speech app in the world, totaling over 100,000 5-star reviews and ranking first place in the App Store for the News & Magazines category. In 2017, Weitzman was named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list for his work making the internet more accessible to people with learning disabilities. Cliff Weitzman has been featured in EdSurge, Inc., PC Mag, Entrepreneur, Mashable, among other leading outlets.

    Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify

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