Speech, Text, and Other Visual Settings on the iPhone

Hi! Back with the do-it-myself tour of the vision accessibility features of my new iPhone.

How to access the accessibility settings on your iPhone

As a refresher, here is how to access the accessibility settings in the iPhone:

  1. Find the "Settings" app (it looks like a little gear icon)
  2. Go to “General”
  3. Click “Accessibility”

I am down to Speech in the list.

Speech options

"Speech" is sort of like VoiceOver it seems. Sort of like NaturalReader and the other optical character readers. All hail Kurzweil! Remember? That is the guy who made much of this stuff possible.

Speak Screen tool

Anyway, you can have what is on the screen read to you. That is the “Speak Screen" option. You also have the option for the iPhone to “speak” either each letter or each word you are typing.

Typing Feedback tool

  • "Character Hints" will give you the letter phonetically if you need the word sounded out.
  • "Speak Auto-text" apparently acts as a nagging English teacher to not only get out her metaphoric red pen and correct your mistakes but also to make sure you hear about it!
  • If you think the iPhone has a better idea of what you want to say than you do, there is also the option to have it read aloud the possible predictions for the next word.

Voices tool

There is a selection of 27 different languages in which to read your text on your iPad. I assume this feature can act as a translator although I have never tried it. Each language has about a dozen different voices, male and female.

Display and Text Size functions

The "Larger Text" and "Bold Text" options are self-explanatory. I turned on "Button Shapes" and could not seem to figure out what it did so I looked it up. To quote iMore.com button shape “recreates the outlines found around tappable interface elements in previous versions of the operating system." Apparently this means it better defines where you should tap and where you should not tap.

Reduce Transparency and Increase Contrast tools

"Reduce Transparency" is next. Supposedly, transparency is supposed to give the perception of depth. You could not prove it by me. A couple of articles I looked at were written with a lot of Geekish. However, turning off transparency and turning on "Increase Contrast" supposedly increases contrast and, in the world of the visually impaired, that is a good thing.

Reduce Motion tool

Idosnloadableblog.com really left me in the dust with their explanation of “Reduce Motion.” They suggest this feature reduces the motion of the user interface including the parallax effect of wallpaper, icons, and alerts. If there is a fluent speaker of Geskish in the house, I could really use the help on this one! I have no clue what it does.

On/Off Labels

The last one I am going to talk about is the "On/Off Labels" option. This option adds either a 1 or a 0 to the button so you can be more sure of its status.

Other accessibility settings

There is a list of haptic, touch, features that are included in the accessibility menu. There is also a list of options for people who are hearing impaired. If you have trouble with hand control or hearing, you may also want to look at those. Remember, the use of technology can help us keep our independence and be functional longer. Hope this little review was helpful!

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