Smart tips for your smartphone

Post date: 
Friday, 3 June 2016

The iPhone seems the most used handset on the planet. But how can you get the best out of Apple’s dedicated screen-reader software? Tech fan and Online Today volunteer, Alex Mann, who’s registered blind, shares some useful tips.

 
“If someone said ten years ago that blind people would be able to use a touchscreen, I’d have thought that was impossible. Yet I use the iPhone screen reader for everything – it can actually replace my home computer for my daily tasks.
 
To use voiceover software, you hover your finger over any part of the screen and it reads it to you. This could be anything, including the date, time or remaining battery percentage.
 
To read a book, open an app like iBooks, or you could use a more advanced reading app like Voice Dream Reader, which is designed for blind people. It can read lots of DAISY books, audiobooks, and you can import files from anywhere, including Dropbox.
 
The beauty of most new Apple products (like iPhones, iPads or iPods) is that the screen reader is included on the device. So they work ‘out of the box’; no need to pay extra for adaptations. Just press the ‘home’ button – the main button on the front – three times, and it turns on and sets up normally.
 
Then follow the steps, like setting up languages, your account and iTunes account. Once you’re signed in, it’s very straightforward and user-friendly. Just take some time to explore the phone.”
 

Help and support

A trained RNIB volunteer can show you how to use your smartphone, tablet or ereader. To request a home visit for technology support, call the Online Today team on 0303 123 9999 or email onlinetoday@rnib.org.uk
 
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