10 iPhone Apps Designed to Assist the Visually Impaired
Apple's iOS incorporates several features that help the visually impaired access an iPhone. VoiceOver is a gesture-based screen reader that allows blind and low-vision users to touch the screen to hear a description of the item under their fingers. They can then use a double-tap, drag or flick motion to direct the phone or app to perform an action. In addition, as part of its word-prediction capabilities, the iPhone's Speak Auto-Text makes a sound effect when a word is typed incorrectly and it speaks the suggested word automatically. After hearing it, the user can have the iPhone type the word by pressing the space bar. Mainstream iOS apps provide built-in accessibility features that can help blind users, Jonathan Avila, chief accessibility officer at SSB Bart Group, a consulting firm that trains companies on accessibility, told eWEEK. For a great resource on iOS apps for the blind, check out AppleVis, which reviews accessibility apps. Although Android also offers accessibility apps, we focus here on 10 apps formatted for the Apple smartphone, which allows people to use VoiceOver. These apps can be found in the Apple App Store via iTunes.