Australian law firm, Corrs Chambers Westgarth, has patented optical character recognition analysis technology that it claims is faster and cheaper than existing OCR options.
The firm on Friday said it had received a patent from IP Australia for JustOCR, a cloud-based service that it said is 50 per cent faster than standard in-house OCR processing. The firm also claimed it was half the cost of existing OCR outsourcing options.
Standard OCR tools convert images of text into machine-encoded, searchable text. Corrs said JustOCR performs this same function using cloud resources but its real innovation is the service includes OCR analysis for no extra cost. This analysis provides a quality score for each document to help users identify black spots in their document collections.
Corrs partner, James Whittaker, said OCR technology was big leap forward for the legal industry, particularly in litigation cases.
“Our new OCR analysis feature is the next step up, providing users with a significant strategic advantage in ascertaining where the gaps are in their own and other parties’ document collections,” he said.
Corrs’ head of innovation, Graeme Grovum, said using existing OCR solutions, it can take a week or more to recognise 1.5 million pages and cost client anywhere between 2 to 4 cents per page.
“While that might not seem like much, the cost of outsourced OCR is prohibitive for large matters with millions of pages. JustOCR is able to OCR and analyse 1.5 million documents in just a few hours and at about half the price of the industry’s lowest rates.”
JustOCR will be available to the open market in Australia and internationally, as well as to Corrs’ clients. It is currently in closed beta, and the firm will soon accept applications to trial the product from its existing client base and other organisations.
Faced with increasing competition in the legal sector, Corrs has been forced to think differently about the services it provides to acquire and keep its clients, director of technology, Berys Amor told CIO Australia last year.
Last October, Corrs launched a Beagle Asia-Pacific, a joint venture with Canadian technology startup, Beagle, which provides artificial intelligence technology. In December, the firm announced CAEL Verify, a collaborative project with Elevate Services to streamline the process of verifying document statements prior to market release.
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