Fujitsu recently added a feature to its ScanSnap iX500 and iX100 document scanners that I’ve been wanting for a long time: the ability to scan straight to the cloud, no computer or mobile device needed. ScanSnap Cloud lets you connect your scanner directly to some popular cloud services so that you don’t have to bring a computer along just to scan a few documents.
Here is an overview:
That means you can now scan documents three ways:
- The “normal” way: by connecting it to your computer with a USB cable.
- Wirelessly, by scanning to your computer or mobile device over a Wi-Fi network.
- Independently, by scanning straight to the cloud.
One caveat. Because ScanSnap scanners do not have a user interface on board, you will need your phone any time you want to connect your scanner to a new Wi-Fi network. That’s probably not a major obstacle, but it does mean you could often use ScanSnap Connect just as easily as ScanSnap Cloud. But once your scanner is connected, scanning straight to the cloud is more convenient than going through your computer or device. It’s the only way I want to scan.
To set up ScanSnap Cloud, get the software from scansnapcloud.com. You’ll need to connect your iX500 or iX100 to your computer with a USB cable in order to update its firmware. Once you’ve done that, you can set up your services.
ScanSnap Cloud recognizes four document types, and you can set up ScanSnap Cloud to automatically send different types of documents to different services. So you could send receipts to Expensify and business cards to Evernote, for example.
When you scan an image, it will show up in the ScanSnap Cloud app and also upload automatically to the service you chose for that document type. In the ScanSnap Cloud app, you can also send documents to other services.
There’s also a setting you won’t find in ScanSnap Manager: ScanSnap Cloud can attempt to extract the date from the document to use in the filename. This works okay for well-structured documents like letters, but you will always want to double-check the date.
Scanning straight to the cloud makes so much sense, and it’s an awesome upgrade to the scanner you probably already have.