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Best Apps For People With Visual Impairments

By Gerard Christiaans

Being visually impaired does not have to impact being able to use a handset, and there are loads of apps out there which make phones even more user friendly. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most useful apps which will provide you with some help in the wider world, and maximise the potential of your mobile.

Speak To Me

Text on a mobile screen can be tricky to read at the best of times. As a result, both Android and iOS have developed integrated screen reading apps, so that you can listen back to text messages and screen content.

VoiceOver is the built-in option for iOS and describes all of the elements on the screen, such as app icons, battery level and – thanks to AI – even images, providing you with complete accessibility.

TalkBack is the Android equivalent and mirrors the text reading features of VoiceOver. It allows you to explore your phone through the app, providing audio guidance while you’re scrolling, naming icons, items and buttons.

Both apps also give you the option of using braille on your mobile, as long as the handset is compatible with a braille device. For Android this is called BrailleBack, and it works in tandem with TalkBack, to provide a seamless audio and braille operation. Meanwhile on iOS, you can also connect a Bluetooth braille display which can read out your VoiceOver content and when you edit text, it gives you the opportunity to automatically switch between printed text and braille.

Voice Control

It is part of human nature to ask a questions we don’t know the answer to. Luckily, all Android and iOS handsets have a built-in app which can make life easier. Google Assistant is integrated into almost all Android devicesand is voice activated, which means that there’s no need to type anything into a search engine to get your answers. Not only is this app the fountain of all knowledge, but it also provides the option of using your voice to set alarms, manage your diary and even send emails.

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