Receipt Reader Turns Your Smartphone Camera Into a Receipt Scanner

Last Updated Jun 4, 2009 11:46 AM EDT

In the future, all business expenditures will automagically find their way into your expense reports (probably through some mashup of RFID, Bluetooth, and Excel 2063). In the meantime there's Receipt Reader, which converts smartphone snapshots of your receipts into expense reports. Here's how it works:


Using the Receipt Reader app, you snap a photo of any receipt. The app uploads it to the ProOnGo service, which performs a little OCR magic and then downloads the details to the app's expense list -- complete with merchant name, date, and amount(s) all filled in.

You can edit the information if necessary, and export the data to Excel and/or PDF for a printable, shareable expense report.

Here's a video that shows Receipt Reader in action.

Previously available for Windows Mobile phones only, the Receipt Reader app was just announced for BlackBerry Storm. I'm now an insanely jealous iPhone user, though an iPhone version is due this summer.

The Receipt Reader service is free while in beta. After that, you'll be charged a "small monthly fee" based on the number of receipts you plan to submit each month. (Company reps declined to specify just how small the fee will be.)

If you have a compatible phone and can take Receipt Reader for a spin (I'm looking at you, Dave), let me know if it's as insanely cool and convenient as it sounds.

In the meantime, check out some other receipt-management solutions, including the NeatDesk Desktop Scanner and Shoeboxed receipt-scanning service. Heck, you can even use perennial favorite Evernote (available for BlackBerry and iPhone) to snapshot and file your receipts.
  • Rick Broida On Twitter»

    Rick Broida, a technology writer for more than 20 years, is the author of more than a dozen books. In addition to writing CNET's The Cheapskate blog, he contributes to CNET's iPhone Atlas.

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