Assisted Touch is an accessibility feature for iOS, usable on any iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, that recreates the hardware buttons and other gestures that someone with a motor disability might need to use. It also lets other folks use the Home, volume, screen lock, wake/sleep, and multitasking bar without using any of the hardware buttons themselves.
This can be pretty handy if you have the device in a case or holder of some type where accessing the buttons is tricky or impossible, like a home-made picture frame, for example.
Another accessibility option like VoiceOver and Zoom, originally created for those with visual impairments, is Speak Selection. There are times when you may not want to turn the entire VoiceOver system on, having Siri read every button and icon on the screen, but would prefer to just have your iOS device speak text you’ve highlighted on the screen.
As an added bonus for those with print or learning disabilities, you can have your iPhone or iPad highlight the words as it speaks them for true bi-modal output (seeing and hearing the words at the same time).
Another accessibility option built right into iOS is Zoom. Like VoiceOver, it was originally created to help those with a visual impairment access their iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. Zoom is made for those who need things magnified on the screen, and it can be pretty darn helpful for those of us who may not have a specific visual disability.
Some apps zoom in within the app itself, like Maps, Safari, or Google Earth. That doesn’t help if you need the buttons and iOS controls magnified, or the text in apps like Mail, right?
If you’ve read these tips for any length of time, you’ll know that there are plenty of settings on your iPhone that were designed first and foremost for people with various disabilities, but that can be extremely useful for those of us who don’t have a specific disability, as well.
Flash-powered alerts are one of these features; for those with hearing impairments, using the iPhone’s flash to let them know when a notification alert has happened is critical, as they may not be able to hear an audible alert, nor the telltale buzz sound the iPhone makes when set on a flat surface.
If you want to use this same notification feature yourself, perhaps when having an audible alert, vibration or otherwise, isn’t viable, here’s what to do.
You ever do that thing where you have to move your mouse around, jiggling the little thing just to find the dang cursor? I do it all the time these days, with my smaller screen Macbook Air and the Mac Mini that’s connected to the HDTV across the room from me, since there’s so much going on onscreen that I often lose track of it.
There’s an easy way to fix this problem, and it involves the Accessibility options that come built right in to your Mac OS X system.
If you were used to inverting the colors on your Mac with a Control-Command-Option-8, you might have noticed that this has changed in OS X Mountain Lion. The older keyboard shortcut doesn’t work any more, and has been replaced with the less simple Command-Option-F5 shortcut to bring up an Accessibility Options dialog box. You have to then manually click the checkbox next to Invert Display Colors.
Here’s how to get the old shortcut back, for a quick invert.
Just because you’re blind and can’t see what you’re taking pictures of does not mean you can’t use Instagram. Thanks to the Accessibility features in iOS, Tommy Edison is able to use an iPhone and take pictures through Instagram to give his followers a view of his world, even though he can’t see.
The process is mind blowing and seems incredibly tedious, but it’s awesome that even blind people can connect with people through Instagram. And you know what, Tommy’s photos aren’t all that bad compared to some of my friends’.
Ever wanted to check your email in your car, or while cooking? Running? Eating? Now you can with Talkler, a new app from Talkler Labs LLC. Talkler is out now in the App Store, ready to get you checking and sending email without using your hands or even your eyes.
All you need to do once you’ve installed the app is say, “Hey Talkler,” and you’ll be able to listen to your email, and reply using your voice. You can navigate through all your email with your voice, as well.
Good news, everyone! Barnes & Noble’s Nook app for iOS has just been updated with support for Apple’s fantastic VoiceOVer accessibility feature, as well as the zoom functionality. This brings the Nook iOS app up to parity with iBooks, the only other iOS e-reader app that can be used by folks with a visual impairment or learning disability to have books read out loud.
Zoom lets those with low vision see the screen at much higher magnification than just increasing the font size, allowing them to use the buttons, icons, and other visual interface systems that they can’t see at the standard size on the iPad or iPhone screen.
The iPhone is a paragon of simple design. It packs a ton of complexity in a simple, easy to understand package. One example is the iconic Home button. One click of the iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad touch will wake your device, a click and hold will bring up Siri, and a triple click can enable a host of accessibility features.
Did you know, however, that you can set the speed at which the Home button will recognize your clicks? Added in iOS 6, this feature will be a boon to anyone with motor issue or even just those of us who want to slow down the speed at which we double or triple click that Home button.