General notes on using the iPhone 3GS with VoiceOver
This document Covers various topics in reference to the use of the iPhone 3GS
Please note – as both the iPod Touch and the iPhone 3GS share the same firmware
(3.1.2 at the time of writing), the commands for VoiceOver are the same. Consequently, a
user could switch between an iPod Touch and an iPhone 3GS without any difficulties.
This document covers what is in the box, physical buttons/Controls, layout of
the home screen, turning on VoiceOver, main VoiceOver gestures, practising
Voiceover gestures, changing VoiceOver settings, general/phone gestures, a note
about the keypad and the QWERTY keyboard, a note about editing text or numbers,
accessing the user guide, issues and comments, and a selection of VoiceOver
compatible iPhone applications
Some general points
This descriptive evaluation was done on a iPhone 3GS 32GB. However, VoiceOver
will work just as well on an iPhone 16GB as the amount of memory is purely used
his document is not an evaluation of the iPhone 3GS specifically. Its purpose is to give an
overview of the use of the iPhone 3GS with Voiceover and some useful hints and
You are able to purchase the iPhone locked or unlocked. Recommended retail to
purchase the iPhone outright approximately $850.00 for the 16GB and $1050.00 for
You can purchase the iPhone on most carriers over a 24 month period for between
60 to 100 dollars per month depending on plan features such as the amount of
data, free calls etc.
As the iPhone is a touch screen device, it will take some time to be comfortable
with using it. However, this does not mean that it is to hard or inefficient to
use. The voice is clear, and the response to gestures is crisp.
What is in the box
3. Stereo Headset with mic. Listen to music, videos, and phone calls. Use the
built-in mic to talk. Press the mic button to answer or end a call. When
listening to iPod, press the button once to play or pause a song, or
press twice quickly to skip to the next track.
4. Dock Connecter to USB Cable. Use the cable to connect iPhone to your
computer to sync and charge. The cable can be used with the optional dock or
plugged directly into iPhone.
5. USB power adapter. Connect the power adapter to iPhone using
the included cable, then plug it into a standard power outlet to charge iPhone.
6. SIM eject tool. Eject the SIM card.
1. Top right hand edge: sleep/wake button.
Press once to lock. Press again to unlock. You'll have to find the unlock icon
on the screen to one finger double tap to unlock the screen which you can find
by dragging your finger around.
If you hold the sleep/wake button in for more than 5 seconds, powers off the
phone. You will have to one finger double tap the power off button to turn off
the iPhone or one finger double tap the cancel button to escape and return to
the phone. If you wait approximately 20 seconds, you will be returned to the
spot where you were before you press the sleep/wake button.
If the iPhone is off, holding the sleep/wake button in for 2 seconds, turns the
unit on. If you have a pin number on your SIM card, VoiceOver will read the
prompt stating that your SIM is locked, select the unlock SIM icon, select the
unlock SIM icon again with the next prompt, enter in your pin using the on
screen keypad, and select the ok icon to continue.,
By default, the iPhone is set to automatically lock the screen after 1 minute of
inactivity. If you want to extend the time or turn it off, go to: settings,
general, select auto lock, and choose your desired setting.
2. top left hand edge is the headset jack.
3. You can find the SIM card tray hidden in a little slot along the top edge of
the phone directly in the centre between the headset jack and the sleep/wake
button. You will need to insert the SIM eject tool or a paper clip into a little
hole just to the right of the headset jack to pop the little SIM card tray out.
Insert your SIM card in to the SIM card tray and push it gently back in to the
4. Top left hand side you have the ring/silent switch, and below this the two
volume buttons for up and down volume. The ring/silent switch movement is (with
the phone laying flat), up towards the screen is off, and down towards the back
of the iPhone is on. The ring/silent switch not only silences the ring on the
phone, but also mutes the sounds that VoiceOver makes (not the speech).
5. Nothing on the right hand side.
6. Bottom edge: left hand side speaker grill for audio (including VoiceOver),
middle dock connecter for the USB cable which is also used to plug into the PC
(i.e. usb chord unplugs from power adapter to allow you to use it for the PC as
well, and right hand side mic.
7. On the back of the iPhone with the dock connecter port at the bottom, the top
left corner contains the camera.
8. On the front face of the phone with the dock connecter at the bottom, just
down from the top edge in the middle: speaker grill for the phone: i.e. phone
calls. Just up from the bottom edge of the phone in the middle: the home
button. The touch screen starts from just below the speaker grill and ends just
above the Home button: it takes up the full width of the iPhone. The home
button always takes you back to the home screen from anywhere. If you hold this
button in for a second or two, the phone will beep at which time you can give
the iPhone commands such as dial 12345 or dial Johny Appleseed, play Dancing
Queen by Abba etc. If your on the home screen and you press the home button,
this will bring up spot light (iPhone search) which you can use to search for
anything on the iPhone.
9. The iPhone will start to tell you about low battery status when it gets down
to 20 percent. If the iPhone goes completely flat, it will not restart straight
away when plugged in to power (wait a minute or two). However, once sufficient
initial charge is reached, it will restart. The iPhone does a rapid charge
within the first hour of being plugged in to power: i.e. almost full.
Layout of the home touch screen
1. At the top of the touch screen you have the status row from left to right:
network strength, carrier name, wireless strength, 3g, time, and battery
strength. Other icons may also appear depending on what you are doing. So in
effect on the left hand side of this row, you have network strength and on the
right hand side you have battery strength. No matter what you are doing, this
status row is always there.
2. At the bottom of the screen you have 4 icons: phone (phone calls), mail
(email), Safari (web browsing), and iPod (music). These are only displayed if
you are on the home page or other pages which appear as you add more icons to
the iPhone: up to 11 pages. All of the application icons can be moved around
depending on personal preference (moving icons is accessible by VoiceOver).
3. The icons between the status row and the icons at the bottom of the screen
are set out in a grid, with 4 icons across, and 4 rows down. So you have:
messages, calendar, photo, camera.
utube, stock, maps, weather
voice memos, notes, clock, calculator
settings, iTunes, app store, compass
Just below these icons and the ones at the bottom, is a bar telling you what page the user
is on and is read by Voiceover as “page 1 of 2. By default, the only icon on page 2
turning on VoiceOver within the iPhone
If a person with sight needs to turn VoiceOver on for a person who is blind, go
to Settings, General, Accessibility, VoiceOver, and then turn VoiceOver on.
Otherwise, a person who is blind can use iTunes on a Mac or PC with a compatible
screen reader to access the iPhone and activate VoiceOver.
Once VoiceOver is on, a person with sight can not use standard gestures.
However, they can one finger double tap rather than single tap an object/item to
activate it. See configuring VoiceOver below for a way to turn VoiceOver
completely on or off if a person with sight needs to access the iPhone. Muting
VoiceOver with a 3 finger double tap, only mutes speech, it does not disable the
It is worthwhile noting here that VoiceOver speaks the labels of all controls
including icons which to a person with sight are just icons (pictures) or
symbols. A good example of this is the icon on the home screen which may say to
a VoiceOver user page 1 of 2, but the actual icon is a row of dots (in this case
2 dots for 2 pages) with the 1st dot selected telling the user that they are on
page 1 of 2. VoiceOvers labelling of such icons is much more helpful, but the
VoiceOver user needs to be aware that what is spoken is not necessarily what is
on the screen. This would only become an issue if the VoiceOver user in the
above example wanted a friend with sight to find the page 1 of 2 on the screen.
Main Voiceover gestures (see the next section - Practising VoiceOver
Note - with VoiceOver running, touching the screen will not activate icons as
would normally happen in standard iPhone operation. Take your time when moving
on the screen, there is no rush.
1. Drag finger around the screen to discover what is on the screen without
activating anything or one finger Flick left or right to move back or forward by
2. One finger Double tap to activate an item.
3. Two finger rotate left or right to turn the virtual rotter dial for
character, word, or if on a webpage by link, heading etc.
4. One finger flick up or down to move by rotter setting.
5. Two finger flick up read from top of screen to the bottom.
6. Two finger flick down read from current position to the bottom of the screen,
message, webpage etc.
7. Two finger touch to stop VoiceOver speaking.
8. Three finger tap find out what is being displayed.
9. Three finger double tap, speech on or off. this does not turn VoiceOver
itself off, VoiceOver gestures will still be active even though speech may be
10 Three finger triple tap turn screen curtain on/off. I.e. blanks the screen
11 Three finger flick up, scroll screen down, and three flick down, scroll
screen up. The three finger flick up to scroll the screen down is particularly
useful when trying to find the Accessibility icon within Settings/General, as on
the initial screen, accessibility is not visible and you need to scroll to
12 Three finger flick left, scroll to the right. A good example of this is when
your on the home screen and you want to go to other pages containing more
applications, this will take you to the next page and so on.
13 Three finger flick right, scroll to the left. A good example of this is when
your on one of the pages listing all your applications and you want to go back
to a previous page containing more applications, this will take you to the
previous page and so on.
Hint: when inputting with the QWERTY keyboard or the dial keypad, one finger
flick left or right moves to another character or number to select: whilst one
finger flick up or down moves backwards or forwards through what has already
practising VoiceOver gestures
In the iPhone firmware 3.1 and above, there is a practise VoiceOver gestures
option to allow users to practise all of the VoiceOver gestures.
To activate this option, go to Settings, General, Accessibility, VoiceOver, and
select the Practise VoiceOver gestures button. Once you are in this practise
1. You still have the status line at the top of the touch screen. Drag your
finger down from the grill and you will locate the status line.
2. If you bring your finger down slightly from the status line, there is an
instruction on how to practise VoiceOver gestures or exit the practise mode by
one finger double tapping the Done button in the top right corner. To find the
button in the top right corner of the actual touch screen, drag your finger down
from the top edge on the right hand side and you will find the Done button: to
exit, just one finger double tap. If this doesn't work, just press the Home
button at the bottom of the screen and you will be returned to the home screen
with the focus on Settings as this was the last item used.
3. gesture anywhere on the remainder of the touch screen to practise. Your
actions can include touching the screen with one, two or three fingers: double
or triple tapping with 1, two or three fingers, and flicking up/down or
left/right with one, two or three fingers. Not all of the gestures have
commands associated with them. For example, if you do a two finger triple tap,
VoiceOver will not say anything as there is no command associated with this
gesture. This practise function will also tell the user about actual iPhone
gestures: egg to start/stop playing music, answer/hang up a call and so on.
Changing VoiceOver settings
To change VoiceOver settings, go to settings, general, accessibility, and
VoiceOver. You can change the following items:
1. Turn VoiceOver on/off. If VoiceOver is on, a prompt will warn the user that
if they continue they will loose access to the phone. One finger double tap to
select this item.
2. Practise VoiceOver gestures. Allows the user to practise VoiceOver gestures
in a safe learning mode. One finger double tap to enter practise mode and Home
button at bottom of screen to exit (or choose the Done button on the top right
hand side of the touch screen).
3. Speak hints on/off. Gives the user extra information on what to do at any
point depending on what object/item VoiceOver currently has in focus. One
finger double tap to toggle this item. By the default, this is the prompt that
the user hears when they are on an item: egg double tap to open.
4. Speaking rate. By default this is set at 32%, swipe up or down to change the
setting at which VoiceOver will speak.
5. Typing feedback. By default, this is set at character/words. One finger
double tap on this item, will bring up a further screen where you can choose
from character, character/word, word, and no keyboard echo.
Remember at the top of each of these screens is the name of the previous screen
to allow you to go back to the prior screen. For example, if you are in the
accessibility screen, at the top of this screen will be the general screen item
which when selected will take you back to the general settings screen. If you
are several levels down and you just want to get back to the main home screen,
just press the home button.
In the Accessibility options screen there is a useful option: Triple click home:
where you can set the Home button (if pressed three times) to toggle VoiceOver,
black/white, and ask. The third option will prompt the user on which
accessibility option to use. One finger double tap will go in to this option
and from this screen the user can set what they want to Home button to do
including turning off the feature.
General phone gestures
1. two finger Double tap to answer or hang up a call.
2. If you have been using the iPod or your not on a call, two finger double tap
will start and stop playing whatever has been selected with in the iPod
3. If your on a slider such as sound volume, swipe up or down will change the
A note about the keypad and the QWERTY keyboard.
1. Dial keypad. By default, if you have not used any other functions in the
phone application, the keypad will be displayed straight away and VoiceOver will
say blank phone number. If you one finger flick to the right or move your
finger around the screen, you will find the actual numbers for the keypad. If
you have used contacts for example, the keypad will not be displayed. If this
is the case, move to the icons at the bottom of the screen which are favourites,
recent, contacts, keypad, and voice mail. Select keypad to use the keypad.
Once this is selected, the keypad is displayed as a standard keypad. Drag your
finger around the screen to become comfortable with the layout or flick your
finger right or left to move back and forward by item on the screen. To
activate an item, one finger double tap. You will here VoiceOver say the number
when you either move on to it or double tap to select it (plus the iPhone will
sound the standard tone for that number). The delete icon to delete numbers is
directly below the number sign (#) on the right hand side of the screen. The
actual number display which contains all the numbers being entered is at the top
middle of the screen just above the row for 1, 2, and 3.
The layout of the keypad is:
(phone number) - this is the field which displays the numbers being entered.
1 2 3
4 5 6
7 8 9
* 0 #
(Save as contact) (call) (delete)
(favourites) (contacts) (keypad) (voice mail)
Hint 1: you can drag your finger down the left side of the screen to hear 1 4 7
star or the right side of the screen to hear 3 6 9 number. Consequently, if you
wanted to get to 5, you could drag your finger down the right hand side of the
screen til you heard 6, one finger flick right to move to 5, and then one finger
double tap to access 5.
for each of the above numbers, VoiceOver also reads out the letters associated
with each key: egg 2 a b c, 2 d e f etc.
Hint 2: rather than moving with one finger and then double tapping, use one
finger to find the item you want (keep your finger on the screen) and then with
another finger (on the same hand or not), one finger tap: in affect your doing a
double tap: eg the first finger is already on the screen and the second finger
completes the double tap sequence.
2. QWERTY keyboard. Select Mail for example and choose Compose to bring up the
QWERTY keyboard. The keyboard is laid out as a QWERTY keyboard with only the
letter keys displayed (i.e. no numbers). Drag your finger around the screen to
become comfortable with the layout or 1 finger flick left or right to move back
and forward by item on the screen. To activate an item, 1 finger double tap.
You will here VoiceOver say the letter when you either move on to it or 1 finger
double tap to select it. The delete icon to delete letters is directly below
the letter l on the right hand side of the screen. The actual display which
contains all the letters being entered is at the top middle of the screen just
above the row containing q w e r etc. To use capital letters, use shift which
is to the left of the letter z or below the letter a. Directly below the shift
key, is the more key, which is used to toggle between numbers and letters (i.e.
if numbers is chosen, the screen changes to the keypad layout). To the right of
the more key, is the space key.
The layout of the qwerty keyboard is:
(text) - this is the field which displays the letters being entered.
(send) usually over on the right hand side. Other icons will appear above the
keyboard depending if you are in message, mail etc such as attach media in the
message application or to, subject etc in the mail application.
q w e r t y u i o p
a s d f g h j k l
(shift) z x c v b n m (delete)
(more numbers) (space) (@) (.) (return)
Hint 1: you can drag your finger down the left side of the screen to hear p, l
delete or the right side of the screen to hear q, a, shift. Consequently, if
you wanted to get to u, you could drag your finger down the right hand side of
the screen til you heard p, one finger flick right 3 times to move to u, and
then one finger double tap to access u.
Hint 2: rather than moving with one finger and then double tapping, use one
finger to find the item you want (keep your finger on the screen) and then with
another finger (on the same hand or not), one finger tap: in affect your doing a
double tap: eg the first finger is already on the screen and the second finger
completes the double tap sequence.
A note about editing (phone numbers or text)
When you want to delete a character or number in either the Phone app or when
typing in a message, when you one finger flick up or down to move by the chosen
item in the rotter (by character for example), the cursor will be to the left
(if moving left) or to the right (if moving right) of the character or number
just heard (not on it. For example, the word dog has just been inputted, set the
rotter to move by character, one finger flick to the right (you hear G), the
cursor is now between o and g, and if you press the delete icon on the screen,
the o will be deleted.
Accessing the user guide
To access the user guide, do the following:
1. Access the icon for Safari. On the default home screen, Safari is on the
bottom line, third from the left. One finger flick navigation or drag one
finger to you locate the icon. One finger double tap to select.
2. The bottom line of the Safari screen contains the following items: Back
button, Forward button, Utilities button, Bookmarks button, and Tabs button.
Move to and select the Bookmarks button.
3. You are now on the Bookmarks screen. Easiest way to start on this screen is
to drag your finger down from the speaker grill at the top, you’ll pass over the
status bar, and should then find the title of the current screen: Bookmarks.
Now one finger flick to the right, and keep flicking til you get to the siphoned
user guide. One finger double tap to open this link.
4. The new screen is a list of links to access all parts of the user guide
including getting started, basic, phone, etc. Navigate to and select any of
these items to read. Some selections will most certainly lead to other
selections, once you actually get to some text to read, either one finger flick
continuously to read line by line or two finger flick up to read from the top of
the screen to the bottom.
4. When your finished, you can press the Home button to exit.
Issues and comments
You can not use Zoom (screen magnification) at the same time as VoiceOver as the
gestures for either accessible tool are not compatible with each other.
You can tell the person at the store where the iPhone is purchased to go in to
Settings, general, accessibility, VoiceOver, and turn VoiceOver on. Otherwise,
this can be done using iTunes 8.2 or higher on a Mac or PC later.
Trying to listen to VoiceOver in a shop is very difficult due to the level of
noise. It would Probably be better if persons who need to use the iPhone with
VoiceOver could have access to a quieter location within a store to properly
explore the iPhone with VoiceOver.
There is an ever growing list of apps (applications) on the App Store that works
very well with VoiceOver.
http://maccessibility.net/iphone/apps/ is a permanent link on the
http://maccessibility.net website which has an ever growing list of iPhone apps
that work with VoiceOver.
Both the Apps Store and iTunes are fully accessible with VoiceOver. However,
you will need an iTunes account to use either application.
If you wish to delete an application from the iPhone that you have downloaded
and installed. Move the focus to the application. One finger double tap as if
you were going to open it, but hold your finger down on the second tap. Remove
your finger once you hear a small tune, and a prompt that says move or delete.
One finger double tap to delete the current item, and you will be presented with
the applications uninstall screen. Choose the Delete button to commence
uninstalling or the Cancel button to exit. If you choose Delete, you will be
presented with a screen where you can give the application a rating or choose
the No thanks button to continue and uninstall. If you chose the Cancel button
above instead of Delete, you will be returned to the initial prompt asking you
to delete the item you are on. To exit, pres the Home button. The one finger
double tap and hold is also used for moving applications around. However,
rather than releasing your finger, drag your finger around the screen, VoiceOver
will tell you what column/row you are moving the application to, and then
release your finger. You will be returned to the current screen.
Unless you have moved all your applications in to the way you want them on
different screens (such as games on page 2), you can reorder them all in to
alphabetical order. To do this, go to Settings, General, Reset, and choose
Reset home screen layout. You will receive a prompt warning you that this will
reset the Home screen layout to factory defaults, choose the Reset home screen
button to continue or the Cancel button to exit. Choosing the Reset Home screen
button will perform the function and return to the current reset screen. Press
the Home button to return to the main home screen.
If you have a missed call, mail waiting, an app store update waiting for you
etc, you will notice a number next to the associated application icon. For
example, if you have 2 updates waiting on the Apps Store, you will hear Apps
Store 2 (not just Apps Store).
People will get used to the fact that the actual touch screen does not start at
the physical top or end at the physical bottom of the phone. However, the
distance between where the touch screen actually starts is the same for the top
and bottom making it easy to get used to where to place their fingers. Egg to
find the status icons at the top or the phone, mail etc icons at the bottom.
Some people purchase covers that just show the touch screen.
There is no delay at all between a finger touching something and VoiceOver
responding. Consequently a user should not come across any situation where they
have past over an object/item, tried to tap twice to activate, and found that
they are not on it.
The user gets lower frequency clicks when dragging their finger around the
screen to let the person know that there is nothing there as opposed to the
higher frequency click when they hit an object plus having it spoken. People
can use the ring/silent switch to turn these sounds off when they don't need the
reassurance of where they are moving.
Getting used to the different gestures and the speed of tapping with one, two or
three fingers, may take a bit of getting used to: i.e. how fast to tap, double
tap, triple tap etc.
As the gestures that are talked about with the use of VoiceOver on the multi-
touch track pad in Snow Leopard on the Mac (at
http://www.apple.com/accessibility) are similar to those that VoiceOver uses on
the iPhone, this will make it easy for a VoiceOver user to transfer their
navigation skills from the Mac to the iPhone.
Getting up to speed with the dial keypad and qwerty keyboard may take some users
several days to get truly comfortable with navigating around. There is no
correct way to use the dial or QWERTY keypads.
Whilst getting used to the dial keypad within the Phone app, some users may
prefer to use the Home button to make calls. For example, hold the Home button
in til a double beep is heard, and then say a persons name to dial or say "dial"
followed by a number. The iPod can be controlled in a similar manner with
specific voice commands.
In the Phone app, you can by the use of the Contacts icon (bottom third left
icon), add contacts to favorites for people that are contacted most often. In
this way, you can then go to Phone, Favorites (bottom left icon), one finger
flick left or right to desired favorite contact and then double tap to call.
To use Contacts to add a favourite. When in Contacts, navigate to the contact
you want to ad. One finger double tap to open up the contact, navigate to the
Add favorites button, and then one finger double tap to activate and add contact
to the favorites list.
People will find that after a while their finger goes to the right
character/number when using either the dial keypad or QWERTY keyboard or close
enough to the item where they can then use the single finger flick right or left
gesture to move to the desired item.
when a person one finger double taps for a character or a number, the
number/character is spoken for confirmation. In addition, when a
character/number is deleted, the character/number being deleted is also spoken.
In an application with multiple fields, make sure that you 1 finger double tap
on the edit field that you want to work with. If the application only has one
edit field, you can start inputting without 1 finger double tapping first. I.e.
if you bring up the iPhone search function, you can start typing in what you
want to search for as there is only one edit field on the screen.
Answer calls by double tapping and again to hang up. If not on a call or not in
an application, double tapping can start and stop playing music (if this is
already on the iPhone).
The Home button will always return to the home screen either from within an
application or other screens of applications other than the default Home screen.
If you press the Home button whilst on the home screen, (page 1), you will be
placed in iPhone search to enable you to find items within the iPhone within
mail, messages, iPod etc. To come out of iPhone search, press the Home button.
The synthesizer which VoiceOver uses on the iPhone is clear, and the maximum
voice rate reasonable for experienced screen reader users who want their speech
fast. Certainly not as clear as Alex on the Mac or similar 3rd party voices
available on the PC. Depending on a users regional settings, depends on what
synthesizer language the user will be using: i.e. Australian for Australia or
American for the US etc.
One item which may cause some initial confusion is where an option has other
options within it, the initial item also says the current state of that item.
For example. when VoiceOver is already on, the option to go in to VoiceOver
actually says VoiceOver on. Some users may think that if they activated this
item, it would be a toggle and turn VoiceOver off. This way of presenting the
current state of an option is the way that the iPhone works for other settings.
Accessing the hardware controls of ring/silent, volume up/down, sleep,
power/awake, and the home button are easy to locate and use.
Locating the hole to eject the SIM tray may be a bit difficult for some people
to find. However, once located, it is relatively easy to find from that point
onwards. However this is not something that would be done very often.
Plugging in the headset or the connecter cable for use with data transfer or
charging is very straightforward.
To protect the screen, stick on films can be purchased. This will not
interfere with using the touch screen. Likewise, cases can also be purchased to
protect the actual phone whilst giving access to the touch screen.
The iPhone doesn't vibrate when it is first turned on like some phones. The
phone takes approximately 15 seconds to start at which stage VoiceOver will
start. However, in the meantime, the VoiceOver user is left in limbo: not
knowing if their phone is starting or not.
When the pin number comes up for the SIM card, VoiceOver will be running at this
a draw back for this and other secure text fields is that VoiceOver actually
announces what key the user is pressing rather than just bullet or star etc
which most other screen readers use to protect password data. Obviously, if a
user is using a headset, then no one else will hear their pin number.
The user will start getting a low battery warning at 20% which will be voiced by
VoiceOver. The warning for battery getting low is at 20%, 15%, 10%, 5%, and
when almost out of charge, the iPhone will go into stand by until it is plugged
in to power to recharge. The iPhone may take a while to restart when it is this
low: usually several minutes.
Battery life on the iPhone is affected by what is currently turned on. Such
items can include if you choose to run in 2g or 3g mode, wireless on/off,
Bluetooth on/off, GPS on/off and so on. However, the iPhone seems to need a
charge even when having most things turned off at least once a day. For some
users, carrying around a secondary plug in battery to charge the internal
battery may be of some benefit.
There is a actual import s/card option within settings to get contact
information from an existing SIMM card. However, the import function may decide
that all phone numbers are mobile numbers.
As with other accessible phones with speech. a user can tell who is calling,
mist calls, add entries to someone’s contact when your on the phone, put them on
hold, pick up another call, and so on.
When the phone is locked, a user can still get access to time/date by pressing
the sleep/wake button. VoiceOver will immediately announce the time.
For privacy, a user can activate the screen curtain to blank the screen with a
three finger triple tap. Great when reading confidential information and they
may not want other people around to read what is on the screen.
Some people may take a while to get used to the iChat conversation style of
presenting SMS messages. They are certainly accessible, but just have to get
used to a different way of navigating: i.e. .
the current conversation is in a continuous thread.
It is very useful that people can create a favourite list in the phone
application and add bookmarks for example to the home screen for easier access.
It is useful when reading emails, to just touch the screen in the body of the
message to have VoiceOver read a bit, then a user can quickly decide if they
want to listen to the message and quickly delete it if they don't. The fastest
way to delete mail msgs within the mail application is to choose edit with in
the inbox, go through the list of msgs double tapping (selecting) those messages
which are to be deleted, and then selecting the delete button (which includes a
count of how many msgs will be deleted). Once this is done, the user goes back
to the inbox, and select and reads those messages they wanted to read/keep.
Using the contact list to browse to contacts starting with a specific letter.
Drag one finger down the right side of the screen below the status line til you
hear table index adjustable. One finger flick down to move through letters of
the alphabet (one finger flick up to move back through the letters). When you
are on the letter you wish, touch the middle of the screen, and now use one
finger flick left or right to move up or down through the desired contacts.
Browsing with Safari and using the web rotter to navigate by heading, link or
form element makes web page navigation very efficient.
The iPod function is very easy to use in selecting items to play, going to next
and previous item, and jumping forward within a track.
the recording quality of voice memos works well for one to one conversations and
for meetings. Being able to pause/restart, and stop recording using VoiceOver
without the output from VoiceOver being heard (using the headset) is a great
Moving applications around on the screen is fully accessible with VoiceOver.
the VoiceOver synthesizer volume whilst on a call to an automated system (such
as Voicemail) is loud enough to allow the user to hear where they are navigating
to choose options and listening to the automated voice at the same time.
Sometimes VoiceOver may stop reading what it is passing over. To fix this,
either restart the phone or if VoiceOver on/off has been assigned to the Home
button, press the Home button three times to turn VoiceOver off and then again
to turn it back on. This second option is a faster and fix's this problem.
When accessing the web based applications within the iPhone such as the Apps
Store, iTunes, Weather etc, this will use the 3g data facility of the phone.
However, if you have a wireless network at home or can access a wireless network
whilst out and about, the iPhone will use this network for data transfers. This
keeps costs down. Usually if you are accessing your wireless network at home,
when you go out, the iPhone will switch to 3g, and when you are back in range of
the wireless network, switch back on to it. Whether you are on 3g or our
wireless network can be checked on the status line at the top of the touch
VoiceOver compatible iPhone applications
The following is a selection of iPhone applications which members of the
visually impaired community have reported work well with VoiceOver on the iPhone
3GS. It is by no means an exhaustive list, as the AppStore contains many tens of
thousands of applications, but these should prove to give the new visually
impaired iPhone user a good start.
Inside redbox mobile lite
Frotz (interactive fiction interpreter)
True or False
Bing Bong *
Name that tune
What Would You Do if?
News and RSS
Free RSS reader
RSS Player * (some unlabeled buttons
Australian Broadcasting Commission
Fairfax radio *
Public Radio Tuner
Wunder Radio *
Fring (for instant messaging)
Twittelator Pro *
Australian Post Codes
Sydney Metro *
Speed dial 1, speed ial 2, speed idal 3, and speed dial 3
Audible Timer *
System activity monitor *
Health and Fitness
StepTrak Lite (pedometer)
Red Laser *
Food and Restaurants
Travel and GPS
What’s around? *
Rocket taxi *
Rimshot and crickets
White Noise Lite