Accessibility features in iOS everyone should be using: Have your iPhone read out loud to you with Speak Selection

Accessibility features in iOS everyone should be using: Have your iPhone read out loud to you with Speak Selection

So you just found an interesting article online but have your hands full cooking dinner? Why not have your iPhone read that article to you? iOS users with Dyslexia have been enjoying the Speak Selection feature as way to have your device read text from apps like Safari and iBooks out loud. Click READ MORE for step-by-step instructions.

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Accessibility features in iOS everyone should be using: Make nighttime reading easier with inverted colors

Accessibility features in iOS everyone should be using: Make nighttime reading easier with inverted colors

Apple has always made a great effort to make their technology accessible to as many people as possible. This includes leading the way with built-in accessibility features. With iOS 7 not only did they add new features like Switch Access and customizable subtitles, they also moved the Accessibility menu from near the bottom of the General menu in the Settings App to near the top, showing that Accessibility is a priority.

The great thing about building accessibility into technology like the Mac, iPad, and iPhone is that many of these features can be enjoyed by just about everyone. Over the next few posts I’ll teach you about some of the great accessibility features anyone can enjoy, courtesy of Apple’s accessibility team.

Make Nighttime Reading Easier with Invert Colors

If you have played around with reading apps like iBooks and Kindle you might have notice these come with a night reading mode. With night reading turned on the screen displays a black background with white text rather than the traditional white background with black text. At night a black background is easier on the eyes and the screen is significantly less bright making it a lot easier to read. With Invert Colors you can add a nighttime reading mode to any app you want. Click READ MORE for step by step instructions.

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How to Take a Picture of Your Mac or iPad Screen

How to Take a Picture of Your Mac or iPad Screen

I use a lot of screenshots when writing tutorials like these for the blog. Screenshots are essentially photos I have my Mac or iPad take of what ever is currently being displayed on my screen. Recently a friend sent me an email asking how I took screenshots on my Mac. They had a video slide show from a trip they recent took but the original photos where accidentally deleted. Their plan was to take screenshots of the video to recapture some of the photos they had lost (albeit in a lower quality than the originals).

Here's how you can quickly take screenshots on your Mac or iPad.

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Keep a child on task with Guided Access for the iPad/iPhone

Keep a child on task with Guided Access for the iPad/iPhone

So you found a really great educational app for your child and can’t wait to see it in action. Unfortunately little Billy would rather play Angry Birds and knows how to quickly switch to the app he would rather be playing. Sound Familiar?

The good news is you don’t have to delete all the other apps on your iPad to limit distractions when it is time to learn with the iPad. Guided Access is a feature built into the iPad that allows you to lock a single app in place, essentially locking out the home button. Not only that you can even lock out portions of the screen to prevent them from tapping certain buttons or ads.

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Removing App Numbers or "We don't need no stinking badges!"

My wife and I recently updated the podcasts app on our iPhones. Although I enjoy the new features with the update I don't need the red number telling me how many new podcast episodes I have. It gives a certain sense of urgency. Since I am almost never caught up with all the podcasts that I subscribe to it means there will always be a bright red number staring back at me whenever I look at the podcast icon. So I decided to turn it off.

If you have an app that displays a number when you don't need it to there is an easy way to remove it.

  • First go to the Settings app on your iPhone and tap on Notifications.
  • Find your app in the list, in this case I'm choosing podcasts.In this menu you can adjust how the app is allowed to send you notifications.
  • Scroll down until you see the option Badge App Icon and change this setting to off.
  • Now hit the Home button and you'll see that the app no longer displays the red numbers.

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