Microsoft Excel is updating its features for iPhone allowing users to import tables and spreadsheets directly with the use of a built-in camera.
The feature by Microsoft is called as the Insert Data from Picture, powered by AI to convert a paper-based table into an editable table in the Excel application. These imported spreadsheets can be edited in Windows or Mac using Excel.
Back in March, the feature is made viable to Android users by the Redmond company.
Microsoft uses Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology by combining it with machine learning models, and layout understanding techniques that transform a paper-based picture into digital data.
The company states that the feature can grab any data depicted in a table format, be it a work schedule, timetable, financial spreadsheet, or a task list. It does not require any extra hardware, and it only uses the camera of the iPhone to convert the data. The feature has not been made compatible for iPad app.
How does the new feature work on iPhone?
1. An iPhone user needs to install the latest Excel app and sign in with the Office 365 account.
2. It will provide the Insert Data from Picture button present at the bottom of the screen by launching your iPhone camera by pointing it at the data you want to import.
3. A red border appears when you select the data on the screen.
4. Tap on the capture button. A crop option is available to use before transforming into a digital spreadsheet in the Excel app.
Microsoft claims that the feature is available in 21 countries for both iPhone and Android. The new feature is capable of running in iOS 11 and versions.