How to Scan on iPhone

Use the Notes app to scan, sign, and send documents on your iPhone

What to Know

  • Open an existing note or create a new one, tap the camera icon, and select Scan Documents.
  • Tap Share > Markup > Add > Signature to add a document signature or create a new signature.
  • To share a document via Notes, tap Share > Send Copy and choose to send it via text, email, or social media.

This article explains how to scan, sign, and send documents (plus other physical papers like receipts) using the Notes app on your iPhone. We'll also share how to sign and send documents via the Notes app.

How to Scan a Document With Notes on iPhone

Here are the steps to scan a document into a new note in the Notes app on your iPhone.


If you want to scan a document into an existing note, you must use a note from your iCloud account. If you use a note from a connected email account in the Notes app, such as Gmail, you will not see the camera icon or scan documents option described below.

  1. With a note open, tap the camera icon in the toolbar and select Scan Documents.

  2. Place your device above the item you’re scanning so it’s in the frame. You can then use the flash, filter, and auto-capture icons at the top if you like.

  3. If you use Auto, the camera will highlight the item in yellow and capture the scan. If you use Manual, tap the shutter icon to capture the item. 

    Notes app with Scan Documents and shutter button highlighted
  4. When you see the scanned item, you can drag the corners on the image if the scan is misshapen. Tap Keep Scan to save it or Retake to redo the capture.

  5. If you tap Retake, you’ll see the camera screen display again, letting you know it's ready for another scan. Follow the same process to scan a second document. Tap Save when finished.

  6. Your scan will then display inside your note. If your note doesn’t have a name, it will default to the name of the scan the app captured.

    Notes app with scan highlighted "Drag corners to adjust," Save, and showing scan in Notes

Add text, create sketches in Notes, or include more items just as you would with any note in the Notes app. You can also leave your note with the scan as-is. 

Your note is automatically saved with your scanned item. And if you sync Notes from iPhone to Mac, you’ll also see the scanned item in the note on your Mac.

How to Sign a Document on an iPhone

You can also sign a scanned document with the Notes app on your iPhone. This is helpful for signing contracts, permission slips, and more. Here's how it works.

  1. Scan the document into the Notes app, as explained above.

  2. Tap the Share icon (square with an upward arrow).

  3. Tap Markup.

  4. Tap Add (plus sign).

    Scanned image in Notes app with Share, Markup, and Add highlighted
  5. Tap Signature.

  6. Tap a previously saved signature or create a new signature. Tap Done.

    Notes app with scanned document and Signature, Done, and new signature highlighted
  7. Adjust your signature's size and place it in the proper location.

  8. Tap Done. Your document is now signed.

    Notes app with document scan and new signature and Done highlighted

How to Send a Document on an iPhone

After scanning and signing a document, you likely want to send it to someone. Here's how it works.

  1. Open the note with your scanned and signed document. (Or open any note you wish to send.)

  2. Tap the Share icon.

  3. Tap Send Copy.

  4. Choose a sharing option. For example, tap Messages or Mail to send the document to a person or entity. You can also tap a contact to send it directly to them or tap a social media platform like Twitter or Facebook to share via your account.

    Notes app with share and Send Copy highlighted and note being send via email

    To collaborate on a note with others, select Collaborate instead of Send Copy and then send your collaboration invitation.

  • How do I scan a QR code on an iPhone?

    To scan a QR code on your iPhone, open the Camera app, frame the QR code, and then tap the notification. You can also scan QR codes in the Wallet app, making it helpful for saving and storing passes and tickets.

  • How do I scan a barcode on an iPhone?

    To scan a barcode on your iPhone, download a third-party barcode-scanning app from the App Store (Get QR Code Reader-Barcode Maker, for example). Give the app permission to use your iPhone's camera and position the barcode to scan > tap Search to view more information about the barcode's data.

  • How do I scan a picture on an iPhone?

    Use the iPhone camera to snap a photo of the picture in natural light; then use the iPhone's crop, rotation, and editing tools to fine-tune the end result. Or you can use the Notes app's built-in scanner to scan images.

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