With the technological revolution in full swing, it's time low vision sufferers also benefited from the millions of apps that are available to smartphone and tablet users. We have reviewed 5 apps that make life easier for patients with low vision.
1. Accessibility This is an inbuilt feature for all Apple products (iPod, iPhone, iPad & Mac). It includes VoiceOver (speaks items on the screen), Zoom (magnifies the entire screen), Invert Colours, Larger Type, and options to increase contrast. All these options are designed to create a smoother user experience for low vision patients. Read more here.
2. Vision Assist This makes your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch into a handheld electronic magnifier that you can use to easily read small print. With options to increase contrast and use your phone's flash to increase brightness, it is a must for low vision patients. Available here.
3. Voice Dream Reader This app converts text into speech so that you do not have to strain your eyes reading books but can have them read to you. It works with many file types and you can even get it to read text from webpages. There is a lite version to test the app, but it limits the reading to just 300 characters. Available here.
4. Talking Calculator Evident from the name, this app is a calculator that speaks the answer to you. It also has colourful, high contrast buttons for easy input, and the ability to record your own voice to speak the answers. Available here.
5. AidColors This is another simple but useful application that tells you what colour the item in front of you is. Hold the iPhone/iPad/iTouch camera 10-15cm away from the surface of the coloured item, and it will tell you what colour that item is. It can be useful for wardrobe choices to know what colour shirt you are putting on. Available here.