ArticleListsBest Image Annotation Tools 2023: for data labeling and annotation

Best Image Annotation Tools 2023: for data labeling and annotation

Image labeling involves labeling the images in a dataset to train a machine learning model.

Once the human annotation phase is complete, an automated machine-learning model takes on the task of analyzing the tagged images to generate identical annotations. These annotations are the rules that the model tries to follow. Any mistakes or wrong information on the labels are also copied during this process. The best image annotation tools is the important process of adding descriptive information to an image.

This process is very important in fields such as computer vision, robotics, and self-driving cars because it helps machines understand and make sense of what they see. Annotating an image can be done in many ways, such as by drawing boxes around objects, giving them descriptive titles, or separating things based on how they look. Below we have mentioned the best image annotation tools.

What is Image Annotation?

Image annotation is the process of adding metadata or labels to images to give information about specific objects, areas, or features in those images. This information helps computers and machine learning programs understand and figure out what the images are about. Image annotation is a key step in many applications, such as computer vision, machine learning, and artificial intelligence, because it lets models that can recognize and classify objects in images be trained and built.

Why Do You Need Image Annotation?

🔍 Training Data for Machine Learning: Annotating images with labels gives machine learning models, especially supervised learning models, the labeled data they need to learn. These annotations help computers learn to find and identify objects, patterns, or other features in images.

🎯 Object Detection and Recognition: Image annotation is used to mark and identify objects or areas of interest in an image. This is important for tasks like object detection, where the goal is to accurately find and label objects in images.

🖌️ Semantic Segmentation: In tasks like semantic segmentation, where each pixel in an image is assigned to a specific class or category, image annotation is used to define the edges of these regions, which lets the algorithm segment the image correctly.

📸 Image Classification: Annotation is the process of labeling images with the right categories or classes for image classification tasks. This lets models accurately put new, unlabeled images into categories that have already been set up.

👤 Facial Recognition: Image annotation is used in facial recognition systems to find and mark important facial features, like the eyes, nose, and mouth, so that models can learn to recognize and verify people.

Best Image Annotation Tools Comparison Table

This table compares the best image annotation tools and gives a quick look at their main features, ease of use, price, and compatibility. It makes it easier for people looking for the best tool to improve image data for machine learning, computer vision, and AI projects to decide which one to use.

Annotation ToolScalabelRectLabelMakeSense.AILabelImgVGG Image Annotator (VIA)
User InterfaceWeb-basedMac appWeb-basedDesktop appDesktop app
Platform SupportWebmacOSWebWindows, macOS, LinuxWindows, macOS, Linux
Image Formats SupportedCommon formats (JPEG, PNG, etc.)Common formatsCommon formatsCommon formatsCommon formats
Collaboration FeaturesYesNoYesNoNo
AI IntegrationYesNoYesNoNo
PricingSubscription-based with a free planOne-time purchase with a free trialSubscription-based with a free planOpen source (free)Open source (free)


Best Image Annotation Tools


  • Scalable and collaborative annotation platform
  • Supports various annotation types (bounding boxes, polygons, etc.)
  • Real-time collaboration with multiple annotators
  • Customizable annotation interfaces
  • Efficient quality control and labeling automation

Priorities in design were scalability, flexibility, and ease of use. Scalabel makes it easy to use automatic annotations, which improves accuracy. Because Scalabel supports collaboration and version control, several developers can work on the same project at the same time. Tools for review, validation, and fixing are also included as parts of quality assurance.

Scalabel stands out because it can talk to other machine learning frameworks like TensorFlow, PyTorch, and Caffe to make in-app model training easier. When 3D Cloud and 2D Video Tracking are used together, they work perfectly to predict annotations between frames. Overall, this is one of the best Image Annotation Tools you can consider now.

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  • Scalable and customizable.
  • Supports various annotation types.
  • Collaboration features.


  • Requires technical knowledge.
  • Paid subscription.


Best Image Annotation Tools


  • Designed specifically for macOS users
  • Intuitive drag-and-drop interface
  • Supports bounding box and object segmentation annotations
  • Integration with machine learning frameworks like Core ML
  • Batch processing for efficient labeling

RectLabel is a tool for labeling images that helps annotate pictures for use in machine learning. The tool lets you add many kinds of annotations, such as lines, polygons, and bounding boxes. The program is easy enough that anyone can use it. It lets users mark up photos by drawing boxes around interesting parts. Still, this is one of the best Image Annotation Tools you can consider now.

RectLabel has a number of features that make the annotation process more reliable and efficient. Since the tool gives you fine-grained control over the size and position of the bounding box, you can make annotations that are of high quality. A smart tagging system also saves users time by making suggestions based on what they have already chosen.


  • User-friendly interface.
  • Integrates with macOS.
  • Good for bounding box annotation.


  • Limited platform compatibility.
  • Paid software.


Best Image Annotation Tools


  • Web-based annotation tool for object detection and segmentation
  • Collaboration features for annotating teams
  • Integration with cloud storage for data management
  • Custom annotation templates and labeling guidelines
  • Export to popular machine learning formats is a website that lets you label photos without having to download or install anything. It works in a browser, so there is no need for complicated setup steps. Makes Sense AI is built on top of TensorFlow.js, which is one of the most popular frameworks for training neural networks. Because it is easy to use and has simple features, the program is a great way to test out picture annotation or small projects quickly. Under the GPLv3 license, MakeSense.AI, an online tool for adding notes to pictures, is free to use. Overall, this is one of the best Image Annotation Tools you can consider now.


  • Cloud-based collaboration.
  • Supports multiple annotation types.
  • Offers a free plan.


  • Limited customization.
  • Internet-dependent.


Best Image Annotation Tools


  • Open-source graphical image annotation tool
  • Supports bounding box and polygon annotations
  • Available for Windows, Linux, and macOS
  • Annotation classes and attributes customization
  • Export annotations in various formats (Pascal VOC, YOLO, etc.)

LabelImg is a popular, basic tool for annotating images with graphics. It was written in Python. GitHub has 14.7k Favorites. Setting up is easy, and you can do it in just a few minutes with just a command prompt or terminal. The picture annotation tool is useful for annotating datasets for object recognition models, but it works best with smaller datasets (less than 10,000 photos) and needs a lot of human help. It is a great tool for learning ML programming because it is easy to use and has a lot of documentation. Thus, this is one of the best Image Annotation Tools you can consider now.


  • Open-source and free.
  • Simple and lightweight.
  • Supports common annotation types.


  • Less feature-rich.
  • No cloud collaboration.

VGG Image Annotator (VIA)

Best Image Annotation Tools


  • Open-source and web-based image annotation tool
  • Suitable for various annotation tasks, including object detection and classification
  • Region-based annotations with customizable attributes
  • Supports exporting annotations in JSON, CSV, and other formats
  • Region merging and split functionalities for complex objects

The Visual Geometry Group (VGG) at Oxford University has made a free program for annotating images called VGG Image Annotator (VIA). It has an easy-to-use interface for drawing points, lines, polygons, rectangles, and other shapes on photos. Also, VIA lets users add notes to characteristics, which gives annotations more context.

Some of the many things you can do with VIA are identify objects, separate parts of a picture, and sort things. Annotated formats like CSV, JSON, and PASCAL VOC can be imported and exported. VIA can be set up locally or on a web server, and it can be changed to meet different needs. Overall, this is one of the best Image Annotation Tools you can consider now.


  • Open-source and free.
  • Browser-based, no installation.
  • Good for polygon and point annotation.


  • Limited to basic features.
  • Limited export formats.

How to Choose the Right Image Annotation Tool?

🧐 Needs for the project: Start by writing down what your project needs. What kind of notes do you want? Bounding boxes, polygons, keypoints, segmentation masks, and image classification are all common types.

🛠️ Types of Annotations: Depending on the project you are working on, you may need tools that can handle certain types of annotations. For example, if you are working on object detection, choose a tool that can make bounding boxes or polygons.

👩‍💻 Simple to Use: Think about how easy it is to use the tool. Is it easy to use and understand? An easy-to-use tool can save you time and cut down on mistakes.

📈 Ability to grow: Think about how big the tool can get. Can it handle a lot of images and notes as your project gets bigger? Long-term projects must be able to grow as needed.

🔍 Quality Control for Labels: Look for things like validation and review mechanisms that help keep the quality of the label high. These can be very important for making sure that annotations are correct.


What is the annotation tool to label your images?

Labelbox is a tool for adding notes to data. It has a visual interface that lets you both add notes and look through your data. You can add comments to images, videos, geospatial imagery, natural language documents, audio, and HTML using Labelbox.

What is the best OCR annotation tool?

When it comes to finding an OCR annotation tool, Abbyy FineReader, OmniPage Ultimate, and Adobe Acrobat Pro are the best. Tesseract is a good example of open source.

Kevin Hawk
Kevin Hawk
Specializing in crafting captivating list-based articles, Kevin dives into the world of software, tools, and apps, offering readers expert insights and recommendations. His keen interest in technology is matched only by his love for travel, which fuels his creativity and adds a unique perspective to his writing. With a finger on the pulse of the tech landscape, Kevin Hawk continues to be a valuable asset to Bollyinside's content team, providing a blend of expertise, passion, and wanderlust.
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