If you are looking to enable screen reading on your iPhone, you don’t have to go far. Since 2009, Apple has included a built-in screen reader called VoiceOver as part of its accessibility features to help people with visual impairments.
VoiceOver basically works by describing aloud everything that appears on your iPhone screen. Over the years, Apple has expanded the feature to include more detailed descriptions of people, objects, text, and other graphics. It also uses gestures and touches to help users explore their iPhone without having to look at the screen itself.
While this feature was developed to help blind and visually impaired users, VoiceOver can also be useful in other use cases. For example, you can use VoiceOver with the Kindle app if you prefer to listen to your books. The feature can also be useful for people with limited mobility.
To enable VoiceOver:
- head for Settings
- Faucet Accessibility
- under Vision Address, select Voice Over
- Click on Voice Over Toggle to enable
Keep in mind that VoiceOver uses a different set of gestures to control your iPhone than standard ones. For example, you have to double-click an object to interact with it. One click won’t do anything but select an app, link or menu button. And once you turn on VoiceOver, you can You have To use this new set of gestures. There is a bit of a learning curve, so take some time to practice before diving in.
Fortunately, Apple includes an option to practice gestures on your iPhone. Once VoiceOver is on, you will then see a new option right below the toggle labeled VoiceOver exercise. Tap on it, then double-tap the screen to start. During the exercise, VoiceOver will describe what you do and what you do with each selected gesture. When you’re done, tap he did to select, then double-click to exit.
Turn VoiceOver on and off
There are alternative methods that let you turn VoiceOver on or off. One easy way is to pull up Siri and use the “Turn VoiceOver On” or “Turn VoiceOver Off” commands.
You can also do this so that triple-clicking the side button or the home button (depending on your iPhone model) turns the feature on or off. To do this, head over to Settings > Accessibility Then scroll down to access shortcut. From the list of accessibility features, tap Voice Over.
This is the bare minimum you need to get started, but VoiceOver is a highly customizable feature. In the VoiceOver settings, you can adjust the speaking speed, choose from several different voice profiles, and manage the output of braille displays. You can also customize a setting called Verbility, which determines how much audio feedback you hear (for example, whether punctuation is read aloud, how links are handled, etc.). And if you’re concerned about privacy, you can also enable a feature called Screen Curtain to hide your screen when using headphones.
If you’re new to VoiceOver and looking for some additional guidance, here are some quick links from Apple’s iOS Accessibility Support Guide and YouTube channel: