User manual

1) Scan

Tapping the camera button on the display bottom will, after you grant the app access to the camera, start the scanning process.
Find a Word Search in your favorite newspaper, magazine or on a piece of paper. Point the camera towards it and observe how the app tries to capture the grid.
Once you are satisfied it has captured what is needed, press the snapshot button. This will start the construction of a solution which, depending on the quality of the picture, may need your input.

2) Find words

You will be sent directly into the Word Search once you finalize it. Later it will be present in the main menu on the front page.
Trace some words manually to get a feel for how it works by tapping the small hand in the corner.
Centered at the top of the display you'll find the search field allowing you to automatically find words.

Granting access

When you tap the scan button for the first time you are asked to grant access to the camera for Word Search Scanner. If you decline access, you must later open the Settings app, navigate to its Word Search Scanner entry and enable access to the camera there.


Direct the camera towards a puzzle to see what the scanner is able to identify. The live preview shows you exactly what Word Search Scanner sees, helping you to capture exactly what you expect.
Once you are satisfied tap the snapshot button to finalize.
The flash is disabled by default. In dark lighting the flash can help avoid hard shadows.

Getting the image right for the scanner can sometimes be challenging. There are some things you can keep in mind to improve the results:

  1. Don't scribble or draw on your word searches before scanning.
  2. Straighten the paper as much as possible.
  3. Ensure sound lighting conditions. Daylight is ideal.
  4. Avoid sharp shadows and lens flare.
  5. Try minimizing tilt.
  6. If the puzzle covers multiple pages minimize the bends.
  7. Keep the camera as stable as possible when looking at the puzzle.


You can choose from screenshots or regular photos you've got and use them as input to the scanner.
If you want to scan Word Searches from your other digital subscriptions such as newspapers or magazines, you must first grab a screenshot on the relevant pages from these.

The screenshots will then appear in your gallery, and can be scanned just like any other picture or photo.

Finalizing the scan

Once scanning is complete a three-step process to interpret the characters is started:
  1. Optical Character Recognition (OCR) is a form of AI used in automatically deciphering letters. This process is applied to ever character in the word search.
  2. OCR is rarely able to understand all characters, triggering a need for manual verification of what remains. To lessen the number of steps needed, you are first asked to verify or mark characters that are the same.
  3. Once identical characters are grouped from step #2, you are presented with each group and the character the app believes to apply. Verify or enter the correct character.

Interacting with the list

List items

The title that was given while finalizing a scan.
Shows the upper left of the Word Search grid.
Last update
Who performed the last update - and when.
Solution coverage
An estimate of how good the solution is based on the scan and character detection process described earlier.
The number of words that have been found; manually or through search.

In the solve screen you are presented with two views of the puzzle.
The initial picture you captured allows you to add or find words, and a list of identified words is shown either below, or to the right of the picture depending on the orientation of the device.

Tap once to enter trace mode, in which you can trace words manually with your finger. To cancel without adding a word tap again.
The Pro version allows export of your findings; this will open the default share options of the device with a image of both list and initial picture, as well as the words you've found in text format.
Use this button to fine-tune the solution after you have left the scanning screen.

Besides tracing words yourself, Word Search Scanner can leverage the solution built during the scanning phase to search for words in the grid.
Always use the Search field at display top when accessing the solution.
Can I scan Word Searches from digital subscriptions?
Yes. This is a two-step process; first open your subscription and capture a screenshot to your Photo Gallery.
  • Learn how to grab screenshots on iPhone.
  • Learn how to grab screenshots on iPad.
  • Learn how to grab screenshots on Android.
The second step of the process is selecting the screenshot from your Photo Gallery when scanning in the app.
Is there a way to disable the ads?
Yes, it is possible to purchase a Pro version by tapping the shopping cart top-right.
The Pro version does not have any ads. (iOS only for now.)
I declined giving the app access to the camera and can't scan. What do I do?
Word Search Scanner must have access to the camera to perform scanning. You can manually enable access in the device Settings app under the Word Search Scanner section.

Anything unclear or not working as expected?

Please contact us.
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