Dropbox users will soon be able to search for text within images uploaded to their account. The popular cloud storage service is introducing a new feature that scans images for text. Once rolled out, the feature will allow users to search for things like a sender’s name or account number within images like JPEG files as well as PDFs.
Previously, users were forced to manually open and examine their images to find text. This is because images, unlike Word documents, don’t contain coded text. In a blog post, Dropbox explained that users have uploaded billions of images and PDF files to the cloud storage platform. In response to the increasing number of images and PDF files being stored on its platform, Dropbox is launching a new character recognition feature.
Dropbox’s character recognition feature is powered by the company’s DBXi technology. It uses a machine learning algorithm to scan image and PDF files for letters, numbers and special characters. This doesn’t just work for new files uploaded to Dropbox. The feature works for all existing files already stored in a user’s account.
Dropbox says that subscribers of its Professional plan will see the character recognition feature available in their account within the next few months. Subscribers of the company’s Business Advanced or Enterprise plan can sign up for early access to use the feature before it’s officially released.
Released June 2007, Dropbox is a cloud storage service founded by a group of MIT students. It features a free plan, known as Dropbox Basic, that includes 2 GB of storage space. Dropbox also features several higher-tier paid plans that include additional storage space. According to Dropbox, the character recognition feature will only be available to paid subscribers.
Of course, there are other cloud storage services available, including Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive. Like Dropbox, both Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive offer free and paid storage plans. However, Dropbox has been one step ahead of its competitors by introducing innovative new features like character recognition.