This iPhone app demystifies complicated maths problems

A screenshot of the Photomath app from the Apple App Store
(Image credit: Apple App Store)

The Photomath app logo

(Image credit: Photomath app / Apple App Store)

iPhone / iPad - Free (In-App Purchases)

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If you’re always rolling your eyes at maths problems, saying that you just don’t have a head for numbers, you’re not alone. But I have a solution for you, Photomath.

Photomath isn’t just an iPhone app, I like to think of it as an educational tool that’ll help you master complicated maths problems for good. That’s because it’s made to help those looking for a deeper, process-oriented understanding of mathematics rather than just spitting out answers. 

It’s designed for all stages of learners, from early learners grappling with simple arithmetic through to college studies trying to get their head around the complexities of calculus. 

Not just the ‘what’ but the ‘how’ and the ‘why’

You can use Photomath to scan any math problem, which it will then analyze to provide step-by-step explanations along with accurate solutions. 

Although there’s a lot to love about this app, it’s these step-by-step breakdowns that make it invaluable to me. Particularly with their animated steps. These are visual guides that show the exact progression of a problem.

Setting out the solution and the steps in this way helps to demystify the mathematical process, showing you not just the answers – that’s not really that helpful in the long-run – but also the ‘how’ and the ‘why’ behind each step. 

This clarity is crucial for anyone who wants to really get to grips with mathematical concepts rather than just memorizing formulas or methods. I’d also recommend it for anyone who likes to learn by seeing a process carried out in a dynamic way, rather than reading an instruction.

Photomath’s developers say the app is capable of solving “billions” of maths problems, as well as word problems. It’s also versatile and can tackle real-world challenges, allowing you to scan text in a book, on a screen or even scribbly handwriting. 

If this all sounds great but you’re worried about how the app is solving all of these problems, then you don’t need to be. Photomath's educational content is developed by a team of mathematicians and former maths teachers, ensuring that the methods and explanations are accurate and sound. 

There’s a basic version of Photomath, which includes step-by-step explanations for free. For those who wish to delve deeper, Photomath Plus offers additional features like custom Animated Tutorials and detailed Textbook Solutions.

Not everyone will need an app all about maths, but if you’re a student looking for a user-friendly and highly effective learning tool or someone who wants to better understand maths so you can put your skills to practice in the real world, then the Photomath app could be a game-changer.


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Becca Caddy

Becca Caddy is a contributor to iMore, as well as a freelance journalist and author. She’s been writing about consumer tech and popular science for more than a decade, covering all kinds of topics, including why robots have eyes and whether we’ll experience the overview effect one day. She’s particularly interested in VR/AR, wearables, digital health, space tech and chatting to experts and academics about the future. She’s contributed to TechRadar, T3, Wired, New Scientist, The Guardian, Inverse and many more. Her first book, Screen Time, came out in January 2021 with Bonnier Books. She loves science-fiction, brutalist architecture, and spending too much time floating through space in virtual reality. Last time she checked, she still holds a Guinness World Record alongside iMore Editor in Chief Gerald Lynch for playing the largest game of Tetris ever made, too.