Making Your iPad More Accessible - Getting Started with iPad - iPad All-in-One For Dummies, 7th Edition (2015)

iPad All-in-One For Dummies, 7th Edition (2015)

Book I. Getting Started with iPad

Chapter 3. Making Your iPad More Accessible

In This Chapter

arrow Set Brightness

arrow Change the Wallpaper

arrow Set Up VoiceOver

arrow Use VoiceOver

arrow Make Additional Vision Settings

arrow Adjust the Volume

arrow Set Up Subtitles and Captioning

arrow Manage Other Hearing Settings

arrow Turn On and Work with AssistiveTouch

arrow Manage Home Click Speed

arrow Focus Learning with Guided Access

iPad users are all different; some face visual, motor, or hearing challenges. If you’re one of these folks, you’ll be glad to hear that iPad offers some handy accessibility features.

To make your screen easier to read, you can adjust the brightness or change wallpaper. You can also set up the VoiceOver feature to read onscreen elements out loud. Then there are a slew of features you can turn on or off, including Zoom, Invert Colors, Speak Selection, Large Type, and more.

If you struggle to hear your computer’s sounds at times, you can do the obvious and adjust the system volume. The iPad also has settings for mono audio (useful when you’re wearing headphones) and a setting to use Speak Auto-text. iPad features that help you deal with physical and motor challenges include Assistive Touch for those who have difficulty using the iPad touch screen, Switch Control for working with adaptive accessories, and the Home Click Speed and Call Audio Routing settings that allow you to adjust how quickly you have to tap the iPad screen to work with features.

Finally, the Guided Access feature provides help for those who have difficulty focusing on one task, and also provides a handy mode for showing presentations of content in settings where you don’t want users to flit off to other apps, as in school or at a public kiosk.

Setting Brightness

Especially when using iPad as an e-reader, you may find that a slightly less-bright screen reduces strain on your eyes. To adjust screen brightness, follow these steps:

1. Tap the Settings icon on the Home screen.

2. In Settings, tap Display & Brightness.

3. To control brightness manually, tap the Auto-Brightness On/Off switch (see Figure 3-1) to turn off this feature.


Figure 3-1: Lower brightness on your screen can also save battery life.

4. Tap and drag the Brightness slider (refer to Figure 3-1) to the right to make the screen brighter or to the left to make it dimmer.

5. Press the Home button to close Settings.

tip.eps If glare from the screen is a problem for you, consider getting a screen protector. This thin film not only protects your screen from damage but can also reduce glare.

tip.eps In the iBooks e-reader app, you can set a sepia tone for the page, which might be easier on your eyes. See Book II, Chapter 7 for more about using iBooks.

Changing the Wallpaper

The default iPad background image may be pretty, but it may not be the one that works best for you. Choosing different wallpaper may help you to see all the icons on your Home screen. Follow these steps:

1. Start by tapping Settings on the Home screen.

2. In Settings, tap Wallpaper and then tap the > character to the right of Choose a New Wallpaper (see Figure 3-2).


Figure 3-2: Choose from several built-in wallpapers.

3. In the Wallpaper settings that appear, tap a wallpaper category such as Stills, as shown in Figure 3-3, to view choices; then tap a sample to select it.

Alternatively, on the initial wallpaper screen, tap an album in Photos to locate a picture to use as your wallpaper; then tap it.

4. Tap Set Lock Screen, Set Home Screen, or Set Both.

5. Press the Home button to return to your Home screen with the new wallpaper set as the background.


Figure 3-3: Choose which screen this wallpaper should be applied to.

tip.eps If you choose a picture from your Photos gallery for wallpaper, tap the Perspective Zoom setting at the bottom of the preview screen to have the background move behind the apps on the Home page as you move the iPad around.

Setting Up VoiceOver

VoiceOver reads the names of screen elements and settings to you, but it also changes the way you provide input to the iPad. In Notes, for example, you can have VoiceOver read the name of the Notes buttons to you, and when you enter notes, it will read words or characters you’ve entered. It can also tell you whether features such as Auto-Correction are on. To turn on this feature, follow these steps:

1. Tap Settings on the Home screen. Tap General and then tap Accessibility.

2. In the Accessibility pane shown in Figure 3-4, tap the VoiceOver button.

3. In the VoiceOver pane, shown in Figure 3-5, tap the VoiceOver On/Off switch to turn on this feature.

With VoiceOver on, you must first single-tap to select an item, such as a button, which causes VoiceOver to read the name of the button to you. Then you must double-tap the button to activate its function. (VoiceOver reminds you about this if you turn on Speak Hints, which is helpful when you first use VoiceOver, but it soon becomes annoying.)


Figure 3-4: The Accessibility pane offers several helpful choices.


Figure 3-5: Note the Speaking Rate slider to set the speed of the VoiceOver feature.

4. Tap the VoiceOver Practice button to select it, and then double-tap the button to open VoiceOver Practice.

This is the new method of tapping that VoiceOver activates.

5. Practice using gestures such as pinching or flicking left, and VoiceOver tells you what action each gesture initiates.

6. Tap the Done button and then double-tap it to return to the VoiceOver pane.

7. Tap the Speak Hints On/Off switch, and then double-tap the same button. VoiceOver speaks the name of each tapped item.

8. If you want VoiceOver to read words or characters to you (for example, in the Notes app), tap and then double-tap Typing Feedback.

9. In the Typing Feedback pane, tap and then double-tap to select the option you prefer.

The Words option causes VoiceOver to read words to you, but not characters, such as the “dollar sign” ($). The Characters and Words option causes VoiceOver to read both.

10. Press the Home button to return to the Home screen.

Read the next task to find out how to navigate your iPad after you’ve turned on VoiceOver.

tip.eps You can change the language that VoiceOver speaks. In the General pane of Settings, choose Language & Region and then iPad Language and select another language. This action, however, also changes the language used for labels on apps on the Home screen and various settings and fields in iPad.

tip.eps You can use the Accessibility Shortcut setting to help you more quickly turn the VoiceOver, Zoom, Switch Control, Assistive Touch, Grayscale, or Invert Colors features on and off. In the Accessibility settings, tap Accessibility Shortcut. In the settings that appear, choose what you want a triple-click of the Home button to activate. Now a triple-click with a single finger on the Home button provides you with the option you selected wherever you go in iPad.

Using VoiceOver

After VoiceOver is turned on, you need to figure out how to use it. I won’t kid you — using it is awkward at first, but you’ll get the hang of it! Here are the main onscreen gestures you should know how to use:

· Tap an item to select it. VoiceOver then speaks its name.

· Double-tap the selected item. This action activates the item.

· Flick three fingers. It takes three fingers to scroll around a page with VoiceOver turned on.

Table 3-1 provides additional gestures to help you use VoiceOver. I suggest that if you want to use this feature often, you read the VoiceOver section of the iPad’s User Guide, which goes into a great deal of detail about the ins and outs of using VoiceOver. You’ll find the User Guide at or downloadable from the iBooks store.

Table 3-1 VoiceOver Gestures



Flick right or left.

Select the next or preceding item.

Tap with two fingers.

Stop speaking the current item.

Flick two fingers up.

Read everything from the top of the screen.

Flick two fingers down.

Read everything from the current position.

Flick three fingers up or down.

Scroll one page at a time.

Flick three fingers right or left.

Go to the next or preceding page.

Tap three fingers.

Speak the scroll status (for example, line 20 of 100).

Flick four fingers up or down.

Go to the first or last element on a page.

Flick four fingers right or left.

Go to the next or preceding section (as on a web page).

tip.eps If tapping with two or three fingers seems difficult for you, try tapping with one finger from one hand and one or two from the other. When double- or triple-tapping, you have to perform these gestures as quickly as you can for them to work.

tip.eps Check out some of the settings for VoiceOver, including a choice for Braille, Language Rotor for making language choices, the ability to navigate images, and a setting to have iPad speak notifications.

Making Additional Vision Settings

Several Vision features are simple on/off settings, so rather than give you the steps to get to those settings repeatedly, I provide this useful bullet list of additional features that you can turn on or off after you tap Settings⇒General⇒Accessibility:

· Zoom: The Zoom feature enlarges the contents displayed on the iPad screen when you double-tap the screen with three fingers. The Zoom feature works almost everywhere in iPad: in Photos, on web pages, on your Home screens, in your Mail, in Music, and in Videos — give it a try!

· Invert Colors: The Invert Colors setting reverses colors on your screen so that white backgrounds are black and black text is white.

remember.eps The Invert Colors feature works well in some places and not so well in others. For example, in the Photos application, pictures appear almost as photo negatives. Your Home screen image will likewise look a bit strange. And don’t even think of playing a video with this feature turned on! However, if you need help reading text, Invert Colors can be useful in several applications.

· Larger Type: If having larger text in apps such as Contacts, Mail, and Notes would be helpful to you, you can turn on the Larger Type feature and choose the text size that works best for you.

· Bold Text: Turning on this setting will first restart your iPad (after asking you for permission to do so) and then cause text in various apps and in Settings to be bold. This is a handy setting because text in the iOS 7 redesign (also used by iOS 8) was simplified, meaning that it got thinner!

· Increase Contrast: Use this setting to set up backgrounds in some areas of iPad and apps with greater contrast, which should improve visibility.

· Reduce Motion: Tap this accessibility feature and then tap the On/Off switch to turn off the parallax effect, which causes the background of your Home screens to appear to float as you move the phone around.

· new_ipad.eps Manage On/Off Labels: If you have trouble making out colors, and so have trouble telling when an On/Off setting is On (green) and Off (white), use the On/Off Labels setting to add a circle to the right of a setting when it’s off and a white vertical line to a setting when it’s on (see Figure 3-6).


Figure 3-6: Can’t see what’s on and what’s off? Use the Manage Labels setting.

Adjusting the Volume

Though individual apps such as Music and Video have their own volume settings, you can set your iPad system volume for your ringer (essentially alarms) and alerts as well to help you hear important alerts.

To adjust the volume, follow these steps:

1. Tap Settings on the Home screen and then tap Sounds.

2. In the Sounds pane that appears (see Figure 3-7), tap and drag the Ringer and Alerts slider to the right to increase the volume of these audible attention grabbers, or to the left to lower it.


Figure 3-7: If you want to control ringer and alerts from the volume buttons, tap Change with Buttons here.

3. Press the Home button to close Settings.

tip.eps In the Sounds pane, you can turn on or off the sounds that iPad makes when certain events occur (such as receiving new mail or Calendar alerts). These sounds are turned on by default.

Setting Up Subtitles and Captioning

Closed captioning and subtitles help folks with hearing challenges enjoy entertainment and educational content. Follow these steps to turn them on:

1. From the Accessibility pane in Settings, tap Subtitles and Captioning.

2. On the following screen, shown in Figure 3-8, tap the On/Off switch to turn on Closed Captions and SDH (Subtitles for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing).

If you’d like, you can also tap Style and choose a text style for the captions.


Figure 3-8: Closed-captioning is available only in certain movies.

3. Tap the Style setting and a menu of font styles for captions and subtitles appears. Tap Default, Large Text, or Classic.

If you want to get your own look, tap Create New Style.

Managing Other Hearing Settings

A couple of hearing accessibility settings are simple on/off settings, including

· Mono Audio. Using the stereo effect in headphones or a headset breaks up sounds so that you hear a portion in one ear and a portion in the other ear, to simulate the way your ears process sounds (unless there is only one channel of sound, in which case that sound is sent to both ears). However, if you’re hard of hearing or deaf in one ear, you’re hearing only a portion of the sound in your hearing ear, which can be frustrating. If you have such hearing challenges and want to use iPad with a headset connected, you should turn on Mono Audio. When it’s turned on, all sound is combined and distributed to both ears.

· Have iPad Speak Auto-text. The Speak Auto-text feature, which you access through the Speech selection under Accessibility, speaks auto-corrections and auto-capitalizations (you can turn on both these features using Keyboard settings). When you enter text in an app such as Notes or Mail, the app then makes either type of change, while Speak Auto-text lets you know what change was made.

tip.eps Why would you want iPad to tell you whenever an auto-correction has been made? If you have vision challenges and you know that you typed ain’t when writing dialogue for a character in your novel, but iPad corrected it to isn’t, you would want to know. Similarly, if your son’s girlfriend’s name is SUNshine (don’t worry, he’ll break up with her soon) and auto-capitalization corrects it (incorrectly), you need to know immediately so that you can change it back again.

Turning On and Working with AssistiveTouch

The AssistiveTouch Control panel helps those who have challenges working with buttons to provide input to iPad using the touchscreen.

To turn on AssistiveTouch, follow these steps:

1. Tap Settings on the Home screen, and then tap General and Accessibility.

2. In the Accessibility pane, scroll down and tap AssistiveTouch.

3. In the pane that appears, tap the On/Off switch for AssistiveTouch to turn it on (see Figure 3-9).

A gray square (called the AssistiveTouch Control panel) then appears on the right side of the pane. This square now appears in the same location in whatever Home screen or apps you display on your iPad, though you can move it around the screen using your finger.

4. Tap the AssistiveTouch Control panel to display options, as shown in Figure 3-10.


Figure 3-9: Turn on the AssistiveTouch feature here.


Figure 3-10: AssistiveTouch displays a small panel that’s always present.

5. Tap Favorites or Device on the panel to see additional choices, tap Siri to activate the personal assistant feature, tap Notification Center or Control Center to display those panels, or tap Home to go directly to the Home screen.

After you’ve chosen an option, tapping the Back arrow takes you back to the main panel.

Table 3-2 shows the major options available in the AssistiveTouch Control panel and their purposes.

Table 3-2 AssistiveTouch Controls




Activates the Siri feature, which allows you to speak questions and make requests of your iPad.


Displays a set of gestures with only the Pinch gesture preset; you can tap any of the other blank squares to add your own favorite gestures.


You can rotate the screen, lock the screen, turn volume up or down, mute or unmute sound, or shake the iPad to undo an action using the presets in this option.


Sends you to the Home screen.

tip.eps In addition to using Siri, don’t forget about using the Dictation key on the onscreen keyboard to speak text entries and basic keyboard commands.

Managing Home Click Speed

Sometimes if you have dexterity challenges, it’s hard to double-tap or triple-tap the Home button fast enough to have an effect. Choose the Slow or Slowest setting when you tap the Home Click Speed setting to allow you a bit more time to make that second or third tap:

1. Tap Settings⇒General⇒Accessibility.

2. Scroll down and tap Home Click Speed.

3. Tap the Slow or Slowest settings to change how rapidly you have to double- or triple-tap your screen to initiate an action.

tip.eps If you have certain adaptive accessories, you can use head gestures to control your iPad, highlighting features in sequence and then selecting one. Use the Switch Control feature in the Accessibility settings to turn this mode on and make settings for this feature.

Focusing Learning with Guided Access

Guided Access is a feature that you can use to limit a user’s access to the iPad to a single app, and even limit access to that app to certain features. This is useful in several ways, ranging from use in a classroom to use by someone with attention deficit disorder, and even in a public setting such as a kiosk where you don’t want users to be able to open other apps. To use this feature, follow these steps:

1. Tap Settings and then tap General.

2. Tap Accessibility and then tap Guided Access, and on the pane that appears (see Figure 3-11), tap Guided Access to turn on the feature.

3. Tap Passcode Settings and then tap Set Guided Access Passcode to activate a passcode so that those using an app cannot return to the Home screen to access other apps.

4. In the Set Passcode pane that appears (see Figure 3-12), enter a passcode using the numeric pad. Enter the number again when prompted.

5. Press the Home button and tap an app to open it.

6. Press the Home button three times.


Figure 3-11: Limit accessible apps by turning on Guided Access.


Figure 3-12: Choose a passcode you can remember.

7. You are presented with an Option button along the bottom of the screen; tap the Option button to display options:

· Sleep/Wake Button: You can put your iPad to sleep or wake it up with a triple-tap of the Home button.

· Volume Buttons: You can tap to turn this Always On or Always Off. If you don’t want users to be able to adjust volume using the volume toggle on the side of the iPad, for example, use this setting.

· Motion: Turn this setting off if you don’t want users to move the iPad around — for example, to play a race car driving game.

· Keyboards: Use this setting to prohibit people from entering text using the keyboard when in Guided Access mode.

8. Another setting that’s displayed to the right of Options is Touch. If you don’t want users to be able to use the touchscreen, turn this off.

· You can also set a Time Limit for users to be able to work with this app.

9. Press the Home button three times and then enter your passcode, if you set one, to return to the Home screen.