Tech Tips: Accessibility Options on Your iPad

Did you know that iPad devices have accessibility options already built into the operating system (iOS)? Without any additional upgrades, apps or other sophisticated gadgets, your iPad can read you a book, magnify print, lock the device onto a single app and reduce clutter on webpages. Say goodbye to all those pesky shoe ads!

To locate your accessibility options, select the General Settings, then select “Accessibility” to view all of your options. Below are a few of our favorites:

Zoom is a built in magnifier that works wherever you are in iOS and with each and every app from the App Store. If you turn on Zoom, double tapping on the screen with three fingers will instantly zoom in 200 percent.

You can adjust the magnification between 1x – 15x. Zoom also has a moveable zoom window that allows you to zoom in a specific area of the screen without enlarging the entire screen. This can be especially helpful when reading documents or webpages.

Text Adjustments
If you have visual limitations, you can adjust text to large, bold or even high-contrast. Dynamic text can increase to 56 point font.

To do this, turn on “Larger Accessibility Sizes” and adjust the slider to control text size displayed in apps such as:

  • Settings
  • Calendar
  • Contacts
  • Mail
  • Messages
  • Notes

Speak Selection
If you have difficulty reading the text on your iOS device, turn “Speak Selection” on to read your email, iMessages, webpages and even books.

Swipe down from the top of the screen with two fingers, or ask Siri to “speak screen.” Use the controls that appear to pause speaking or adjust the rate.

Guided Access
Moms with small children: Does this sound familiar? You need five minutes of sanity, but your child keeps exiting out of his or her app? Guided Access is the answer. It keeps the iOS device locked in a single app.

With Guided Access, you can keep the app on by disabling the home button, or restricting touch input on certain areas of the screen within the app.

There is a great shortcut to turn on Guided Access: triple click the home button.

Safari Reader
Safari Reader reduces the visual clutter on a webpage by removing distractions – like shoe ads! It takes away the ads, buttons and navigation bars, allowing you to focus on just the written content that you want.

You can access Safari Reader by selecting the squiggly lines to the left of the web address bar. In newer versions of iOS, a “Reader” button appears to the right of the URL.

The ability to use an iPad or other electronic device can be important to educational and social success. For people who cannot access devices in the traditional way, Good Shepherd therapists offer various assistive technology solutions.

For more information on Good Shepherd’s Assistive Technology Program, call 1-888-44-REHAB (73422) or contact us online today.

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