Have been working with two clients today on #VoiceOver for #iOS. Very different requirements from the two of them. One very focused on wanting to be socially active with the use of email, txt messaging, some word processing and some #Facebook use. The other purely focused on accessing audio books and ebooks through #Audible and #DolphinEasyReader as well as using her device for assisting in day to day living. So we’ve done some work around using the built in magnifier app on her device and utilising several of the features in #SeeingAI as well. For me this really helps highlight just how useful an iOS device with a couple of apps installed can be to a person with sight loss. I think it clearly demonstrates that people can have such different requirements for their tech yet still have that ever present goal of remaining as independent as possible. I love my job.
It took me quite a while to get into using Twitter, initially for personal use and later for my business. One of the reasons it took some time was because I simply didn’t find the standard Twitter app for iOS to be particularly easy to use nor its home feed screen to flow particularly well. I also found that although the Twitter app itself is perfectly accessible with VoiceOver I really didn’t enjoy using it at all. As a result I began looking for an alternative Twitter client that would be easy to use, would give me a clean flowing home feed and of course would be fully accessible with VoiceOver.
When I was searching for information online I read a lot of good things from both visually impaired and sighted people about the Twitterific app for iOS. Not only that but it’s a free app! Needless to say I immediately found it on the App Store and downloaded it. I’ve been using the app for a few months now and have to say that I love it.
The first thing to impress me when I initially opened the app was that if you don’t already have a Twitter account you can actually sign up and create one directly using the Twitterific app. This really is excellent whether you’re a VoiceOver user or not as you can create your entire account and profile without ever needing to leave the app. Not only that but it’s completely accessible with VoiceOver and takes you through the process step by step.
The second thing to impress me was that every single button, tab and menu is labelled and fully accessible with VoiceOver. The app layout is simple, easy to navigate and crucially, is uncluttered.
There’s also a great help section which lists gestures that you can use for all manner of tasks and functions whilst using the app. The app is also customisable in terms of the notifications you receive, marking your current position in your home feed and how you view tabs and menu bars.
As you’d expect you can do everything with the Twitterific app that you can on the standard Twitter app, including posting and deleting tweets, replying to tweets, retweeting, liking and sharing other people’s tweets, private messaging, searching for and following other Twitter profiles etc.
There’s also an AppleWatch app which works smoothly with the iOS app allowing you to receive notifications directly to your AppleWatch.
Everything I’ve mentioned so far is excellent, functional and accessible, the most striking and impressive thing about the Twitterific app for me however is the simplicity of the home feed. It’s completely uncluttered, is wonderfully easy to navigate and works beautifully.
The only thing you can’t do with the Twitterific app that you can with the standard Twitter app is post tweets using Siri. I think I’ve only ever posted one or possibly two tweets using Siri on the standard Twitter app over the entire time that I’ve been using it. I much prefer typing my tweets on the virtual keyboard or using my Magic Keyboard as I find it a lot more accurate. However, the lack of Siri interaction with Twitterific might be something to consider if you normally post most of your tweets using Siri.
Finally, although the Twitterific app is free there are optional in app purchases. In a nutshell, when you get the app some adverts do appear on the home feed screen, the adverts aren’t actually too annoying and the app works perfectly regardless of them being there. However, if you prefer not to have adverts appear you can choose an in app purchase option to remove them. The in app purchase is a very small amount and in my opinion well worth it, not only because it removes the adverts but also because it contributes to the ongoing development of the app. Not to mention that by making an in app purchase you’re helping support a great and fully accessible product.
If you haven’t tried Twitterific for iOS yet you can download it from the app store at: https://appsto.re/gb/_GTLI.i
If you’d like to follow me on Twitter you can find me on @AVCoaching
This is just a short post about reading Amazon Kindle books. A lot of people think that you have to own a Kindle to be able to read Amazon Kindle books and are therefore put off of buying and reading some of the thousands of great titles that are available in Kindle ebook format. So let’s clear this up……no, you don’t have to own a Kindle to read Amazon Kindle ebooks at all. In fact if you have a smart phone, tablet, Mac or Windows PC you can read them through the Kindle app. The app is free and is available from your app store on your chosen device. Simply download and install the app then sign into it with your Amazon user name and password. Once you’ve done this you’ll have access to all of the Kindle books you’ve ever bought and will ever buy. You can quickly and easily download books and read them on any device which you have the app installed on. It’s a real shame that more people don’t realise that the Kindle app is available for pretty much every operating system, I do believe a lot more people would enjoy reading a greater variety of book genres and try out many more authors if they knew that reading a Kindle book is so easy.
A note for VoiceOver users on Apple devices; the Kindle app on Mac OS is not very accessible at all and is therefore not very usable. However, the Kindle app on iOS is fully accessible with VoiceOver, in fact it’s a really excellent and usable app.
Okay, time for a shameless plug. As some of you know I published my first short book for kids last year. Well, I’ve recently released a new book. This one isn’t for kids but is a book of poetry called The Edge of Darkness. I’ve added the links to each of my books below. Please do take a look and if you buy a copy and read it, do feel free to leave a review on Amazon. I would be immensely grateful and you never know, you might even like what you read.
The Adventures of Larry the Stick Insect; Larry the Dancing King: http://amzn.to/2aee5an
Parents and grandparents don’t forget, you can follow Larry on Facebook on: http://www.facebook.com/Adventuresoflarryofficial
You can also follow Larry on his very own Twitter page on: @larrythestick1
For general updates and other news about my books you can follow my author Facebook page on https://www.facebook.com/jamesgoldsworthyauthor/
And follow me on Twitter on @authorjgolds