And see, no longer blinded by our eyes.
Looking for an app that reads text to my father, someone from the incobs.de website (informs about technologies for blind and low vision people and have an English language version) gave me the tip to look at the Accessibility features of iOS8. While that OS is somewhat buggy, there’s also something that Apple did right, very right (not sure whether it was already available in iOS7). You can get the iPad (or iPhone, or — probably also — iPod touch) to read text for you, e.g., on websites.
Just go to “Settings“
“General” and “Accessibility“
where you can activate “Speak Screen” and
When you now swipe two fingers down from the top of the screen, the text is read to you (at least in Safari, does not seem to work with all Apps). Great if you are visually impaired. You might want to slow down the “Speaking Rate” a bit.
Make sure you select the right language under “Voices” …
Given that the pronunciation if vastly different between the languages, select the one the text you read usually is in:
and download the “Enhanced Quality“
When you use the feature on a website, you get these controls and the words are highlighted when they are read (if “Highlight Content” is activated).
And sure, it’s not an audio book, it’s not a human voice, but if you are visually impaired it might just help you to get some information you otherwise could not have gotten.
So, kudos Apple, and very well done.