Apple’s little-known iPhone feature that lets blind people see with their fingers

“A few years ago, backstage at a conference, I spotted a blind woman using her phone. The phone was speaking everything her finger touched on the screen, allowing her to tear through her apps. My jaw hit the floor. After years of practice, she had cranked the voice’s speed so high, I couldn’t understand a word it was saying,” David Pogue reports for Yahoo Finance. “And here’s the kicker: She could do all of this with the screen turned off. Her phone’s battery lasted forever.”

“Ever since that day, I’ve been like a kid at a magic show. I’ve wanted to know how it’s done. I’ve wanted an inside look at how the blind could navigate a phone that’s basically a slab of featureless glass,” Pogue reports. “This week, I got my chance. Joseph Danowsky offered to spend a morning with me, showing me the ropes.”

“I asked Joe if there’s anything he’d ask Apple to improve in VoiceOver,” Pogue reports. “‘The biggest problem with the iPhone is when you use it a lot, you need a bigger battery. I’m using it all the time. If the phone were just a little thicker, to accommodate a double battery, that’d be a nice thing. I’m also a little disappointed they did away with the standard headphone jack, because when you use it a lot, you need to charge it all the time [and the new earbuds plug into the Lightning charging jack].'”

“I pointed out that none of his complaints about the iPhone have anything to do with accessibility. They’re the same complaints we all have,” Pogue reports. “‘I know,’ he said, laughing.’VoiceOver is very consistent and it’s extremely good. There’s no problem with VoiceOver.’ (The Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired would undoubtedly agree; in January, it gave Apple its Louis Braille Award.)”

Much more in the full article – highly recommendedhere.

MacDailyNews Take: If you haven’t tried VoiceOver, give it a whirl – it’s insanely great!

Apple has done and continues to do a fantastic job with Accessibility features.

Blind Apple engineer is transforming the tech world at only 22 – July 11, 2016
Apple continues to lead in accessibility awareness and innovation – May 19, 2016
How a simple Apple feature is changing lives – July 28, 2015
How the Apple Watch is opening up new ways to communicate – May 20, 2015
You know, blind people can actually use touchscreens – January 29, 2015
iPad app brings Braille keyboard to blind users’ fingertips – January 24, 2015
Apple patent applications reveal In-App features, fingerprint scanning enrollment and accessibility inventions – July 31, 2014
OS X Mavericks: How to control your Mac with your voice – April 9, 2014
Can Apple help make hearing aids cool? – March 10, 2014
Apple files new patents relating to haptics, Thunderbolt, iSight and improved accessibility for the hearing impaired – August 23, 2012
Inside Apple’s OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion: New iOS-style Accessibility – July 18, 2012
Stevie Wonder thanks Steve Jobs, praises Apple for iOS accessibility – September 15, 2011
Good news for music fans with vision loss: Apple adds accessibility features to iPod nano and iTunes – September 18, 2008

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