How to Use Live Text on Your iPhone

Have you ever wanted to copy or translate text from a photo? Now you can. Live Text scans for text in photos you have taken or stored on your iPhone, allowing you to copy it, translate it, and much more. You’ll need an iPhone XR, iPhone XS, or later, to use Live Text and your phone must be updated to iOS 15. [1] This wikiHow article will teach you how to use Live Text on your iPhone.

[Edit]Steps

[Edit]Copying Text from a Photo

  1. Select a photo from your Photos app or online. Find a photo with text you would like to copy from either your browser or your photo library.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 1 Version 2.jpg
    • The Photos app can be found on your home screen, as can Safari, the default browser app. The Photos app icon is a multi-colored pinwheel in a white square, whereas the Safari app icon is a blue compass in a white square.
    • If you are having trouble finding either app, you can swipe down on your screen, type either “Photos” or “Safari” in the search bar that appears, then click the desired app.
  2. Hold down on a word. Press and hold your finger on a single word in the photo until your phone vibrates slightly and the word is highlighted in blue.[2]
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 2 Version 2.jpg
  3. Select all of the words you would like to copy. To include multiple words in your selection, hold and drag the darker blue markers on either side of the selected word until the highlight covers the desired text.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 3 Version 2.jpg
  4. Press . Now that you have copied the selected text, you are free to paste it into the desired location.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 4 Version 2.jpg

[Edit]Translating Text from a Photo

  1. Select a photo from your Photos app or online. Find a photo with text you would like to translate from either your browser or your photo library.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 5 Version 2.jpg
    • The Photos app can be found on your home screen, as can Safari, the default browser app. The Photos app icon is a multi-colored pinwheel in a white square, whereas the Safari app icon is a blue compass in a white square.
    • If you are having trouble finding either app, you can swipe down on your screen, type either “Photos” or “Safari” in the search bar that appears, then click the desired app.
  2. Hold down on a word. Press and hold your finger on a single word in the photo until your phone vibrates slightly and the word is highlighted in blue.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 6 Version 2.jpg
  3. Select all of the words you would like to translate. To include multiple words in your selection, hold and drag the darker blue markers on either side of the selected word until the highlight covers the desired text.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 7 Version 2.jpg
  4. Press . After pressing Translate, the translation popup will appear with your translation and a variety of ways to use it.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 8 Version 2.jpg
    • If you are using a photo in your Photos app, you may have to click the right arrow on the menu to see the Translate button.
  5. Select your language of choice. If your phone is not already set to translate to the desired language, click the “Change Language” button in the menu at the bottom of the screen, then select the right language.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 9 Version 2.jpg
    • Currently, Live Text supports translations using Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.
  6. Use your translation. Now that you have successfully translated the text, you can choose to listen to and/or copy your translation.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 10 Version 2.jpg
    • You can listen to the translation by clicking the blue play button in the bottom right of the text box.
    • Alternatively, you can copy the translation text with the “Copy Translation” button in the menu at the bottom of the screen.

[Edit]Looking Up Text in a Photo

  1. Select a photo from your Photos app or online. Find a photo with text you would like to look up from either your browser or your photo library.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 11 Version 3.jpg
    • The Photos app can be found on your home screen, as can Safari, the default browser app. The Photos app icon is a multi-colored pinwheel in a white square, whereas the Safari app icon is a blue compass in a white square.
    • If you are having trouble finding either app, you can swipe down on your screen, type either “Photos” or “Safari” in the search bar that appears, then click the desired app.
  2. Hold down on a word. Press and hold your finger on a single word in the photo until your phone vibrates slightly and the word is highlighted in blue.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 12 Version 3.jpg
  3. Select all of the words you would like to look up. To include multiple words in your selection, hold and drag the darker blue markers on either side of the selected word until the highlight covers the desired text.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 13 Version 3.jpg
  4. Press . After pressing the Look Up button, a menu will appear with a variety of different options to explore.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 14 Version 3.jpg
    • If you are looking up a single word, you will see a series of dictionary definitions for that word, followed by a number of suggestions from the Internet and other options.
    • If you are looking up multiple words, you will first see “Siri Suggested Websites”, then a series of other results and options.

[Edit]Calling, Texting, or Emailing a Contact from a Photo

  1. Select a photo from your Photos app or online. Find a photo with information of the person you would like to contact from either your browser or your photo library.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 15 Version 3.jpg
    • The Photos app can be found on your home screen, as can Safari, the default browser app. The Photos app icon is a multi-colored pinwheel in a white square, whereas the Safari app icon is a blue compass in a white square.
    • If you are having trouble finding either app, you can swipe down on your screen, type either “Photos” or “Safari” in the search bar that appears, then click the desired app.
  2. Hold down on the contact information in the photo. Press and hold your finger on the phone number or email address in the photo until a text box with the information and a menu of contact options pop up.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 16 Version 3.jpg
  3. Select your mode of communication. From the menu, choose a way to get in touch with the person.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 17 Version 3.jpg
    • For emails and phone numbers, you will always have the option to send an email or call and text respectively, but depending on the site, you may also have the option to FaceTime the individual or add them to your contacts.

[Edit]Scanning Text Directly into an App with Your Camera

  1. Open an app that uses text. From the home screen of your iPhone, open an app such as Notes, Reminders, or Translate that makes use of text.[3]
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 18 Version 2.jpg
  2. Tap once in the text field, then tap again. Tap the text box once so the app now displays a blinking cursor, then tap it again to bring up a small popup menu.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 19 Version 2.jpg
  3. Press the Live Text button. On the menu that appears, press the small button with three horizontal lines inside an incomplete square.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 20 Version 2.jpg
  4. Line up your camera. Position your camera so it includes the text you would like to insert.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 21 Version 2.jpg
  5. Select the text you would like to insert. With this feature, you can import the text enclosed by yellow boundaries by simply clicking Import, or you can use the Live Text button to select a specific portion of the text.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 22 Version 2.jpg
    • For a more specific selection, click the Live Text button that appears in the bottom right of the screen, then hold down on a word until it is highlighted in blue. Adjust the markers on either side of the word to highlight the desired selection.
  6. Click . After clicking the Insert button, the selected text will be scanned into your app of choice for you to use as you please.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 23 Version 2.jpg

[Edit]Using Live Text in Your Camera App

  1. Open the Camera app. From the home screen of your iPhone, find and open the Camera app. The app icon is a camera in a grey square.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 24 Version 2.jpg
    • If you are having trouble finding the app, you can also swipe down on your screen, type “Camera” in the search bar that appears, then click the app.
  2. Focus the camera on a piece of text. Find the piece of text you would like to use, then focus your camera on that piece of text.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 25 Version 2.jpg
  3. Press the Live Text button. Once your camera is properly focused, a circular button with a square and three horizontal lines will appear in the bottom right of the screen. Click that button to bring up a cropped photo of the text with the menu of Live Text options.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 26 Version 2.jpg
  4. Select the desired option. Now that you have your text, choose to copy it, translate it, or look it up as listed in the methods above.
    Use Live Text on Your iPhone Step 27 Version 2.jpg
    • If the text is contact information, you can tap the cropped photo to bring up a menu with contact options.

[Edit]Tips

  • If you are using an iPhone XR, iPhone XS, or later with iOS 15, but Live Text is not working, try closing and reopening the app you are trying to use it with.

[Edit]References

[Edit]Quick Summary

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