In iOS 15, Apple has added a new feature called Live Text that can recognize text when it appears in your camera's viewfinder or in a photo you've taken and let you perform several actions with it.

Apple iPadPro iPadOS15 photos LiveText 060721 big
For example, if you take a picture of a storefront that displays a phone number, you can capture that number to place a call or add to your contacts. You can also copy Live Text from your photos for making use of elsewhere. It's an incredibly simple, useful feature, and here's how it works in its simplest form.

  1. Launch the Photos app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Find a photo that has some words on show, such as a restaurant menu or product tag.
  3. Pinch to zoom the photo if the text appears small.
  4. Press and hold on the words, then drag the ends of the selection tool to highlight all the text that you want to copy.
  5. Take your finger off the screen, then select Copy from the contextual popup menu.
  6. Finally, switch to an app that supports text input, press and hold your finger where the cursor is located, then select Paste from the popup menu.

photos

Did you know that Live Text also features optical character recognition? That means if you have a picture of a handwritten note in your photos, you can still copy it and then paste it as digital text.

Live Text also works with the camera app and other images on the ‌iPhone‌, plus there are other features in addition to copy/paste including Look Up and Translate, so you can translate foreign language text found in a photo. Live Text works with the Spotlight search on the ‌iPhone‌ as well, which lets text in photos be located through a standard ‌iPhone‌ search. For more on what's new in the Photos app, we have a dedicated iOS 15 Photos guide that highlights all of the new features.

Related Roundups: iOS 15, iPadOS 15
Related Forum: iOS 15

Top Rated Comments

Mikel30 Avatar
15 weeks ago
Take a look at what happens when you navigate to shelleywillems.com ('http://shelleywillems.com')
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Tivoli_ Avatar
15 weeks ago
Even if the phone is running iOS 15, some older phones are not supporting the feature. I wish these articles state that.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving Avatar
15 weeks ago
Love this feature! Saves so much time.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Graphikos Avatar
15 weeks ago

Why would "shelleywillems.com" go to the Google Android website? This is strange.
Because Apple failed to register it first.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
einsteinbqat Avatar
15 weeks ago
Perhaps mentionning what devices this feature would work on would be a good idea. Just saying… ?
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
2013.1 Avatar
15 weeks ago
I wish it would live translate within the camera view like this

There was an app in the App Store (World something) that did that years ago but disappeared when Google started its service.
I'd rather not use the Google app.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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