Accessibility

Are there hearing aids that can work with my mobile device?

Episode 1637

Fred from Columbia MD

Fred called in to say that there's a new wireless microphone for the hard of hearing, which can connect to your mobile device via Bluetooth and Quatro hearing aids so that those with trouble hearing can participate in group conversations. Leo says that's a great feature. Leo loves that the modern hearing aids can interact with your mobile phones in order to listen better.  Check them out here - https://www.resound.com/en-us/hearing-aids/bluetooth-hearing-aids.

How Can I Have Email Read Out Loud?

JAWS

Episode 1618

Mark from Farmington, New Mexico

Mark's mom has macular degeneration and can't read her email. What can she get to read her email for her? Leo says that Windows does have text to speech (TTS) built-in, so he can try that. Microsoft Outlook also has voice commands. Leo usually recommends contacting the local Foundation for the Blind. Maybe they can set her up with a JAWS screen reader. He could also try a web-based solution through an email provider. They may have accessibility features like using Google Text to Speech.

Can I Use the iPhone Without Touching It?

Siri

Episode 1616

Howard from Tarzana, CA

Howard's wife has severe neuropathy and needs a way to use her iPhone without touching the screen. Leo says that the iPhone has some of the best Accessibility features, so using SIRI and voice activation could be the best bet. But Bixby in the latest Android phones is better at voice control. Go into the iPhone's settings under Accessibility and see what's available. She can call Apple and see what they can do because they have great Accessibility support. In iOS12, there are also SIRI Shortcuts, which enables users to use verbal cues to run shortcuts. 

Why are iPhone's Accessibility Features Terrible?

iPhone

Episode 1595

Fred from Frazier Park, CA

Fred wants to know why Apple hates the blind. Leo says that Apple doesn't. In fact, they lead the accessibility field with their accessibility in mobile devices. But Fred says that for him, most of those features are worthless. But Leo says that he knows many blind people who love the features in the iPhone, even though touch screen functions are a challenge. Steve Wonder uses his mobile phone with a braille screenwriter by Human Wear. Leo says it's great technology.

Can an Android Phone Auto-answer?

G6

Episode 1590

Dustin from Virginia

Dustin's mom has limited vision and he got her a Motorola Moto G6 smartphone with apps that can help her read the screen. But she's having trouble answering the phone. Is there a solution that will allow her to simply touch to answer? Leo says that there's a setting in Samsung phones to select any key to answer the phone. There's even an auto-answer option, though Leo's not sure if Moto supports it. Jitterbug's Flip Phone is really easy to use.

Why Does my Mobile Device Mute on its Own?

S10e

Episode 1576

John from Redondo Beach, CA

John recently got a pair of Unitron hearing aids but he can't take phone calls with them. Leo says that's a limitation of the hearing aids, which may not be A2DP compatible. But the problem is his new Samsung Galaxy S10e mutes intermittently. Leo says to try un-pairing, and then re-pairing. Leo also says this has been a known issue with Samsung phones over time. There's a feature called "Easy Mute" that will need to be disabled, and It's in the settings.

What can I Do if Google Breaks my Screen Reader Software?

 ZoomText

Episode 1576

Laura from Beaumont, TX

Laura is vision impaired and uses Google's screen reader on her browser and a recent update to Chrome has broken it. But there doesn't seem to be a legacy version of Chrome. What can she do? Leo says that with the latest version of Chrome, she needs to install the ZoomText extension and install it. She can download it here.