Apple just launched the new iPhones and along with them a major update to the iPhone and iPad operating system called iOS 7. iOS 7 has a brand new look and a slew of new features that is available for the iPad 2 and newer, iPhone 4 and newer, and the 5th generation iPod Touch. (for a full list of supported devices visit http://www.apple.com/ios/whats-new/) As with the last few OS updates Apple has added a handful of new accessibility features and here are our three favorites.
Setup Your Switches
Switch Control supports most of the Bluetooth iPad switches/switch interfaces available on the market (we tried the AbleNet Blue2 Switch, RJ Cooper Bluetooth Switch, and the AirTurn page turning switch and they all worked great)
Wired Switch interfaces are more limited. A handful of USB based switch interfaces plugged into the Apple USB Camera Connector Kit work, just ignore the warning about the device not being supported. WARNING: Of the interfaces we tested only a few worked. The Quizworks USB Switch Interface and the StealthSwitch Interface worked without issues but the Don Johnston Interface Pro 6, and the Hitch Switch Interface did not. Be sure to check with the manufacturer before making any purchases.
Choose What Your Switch Does
Adjust Your Scanning Settings
- Choosing between Auto scanning or step scanning
- Adjusting scanning speed
- Creating a press and hold activation delay
- Adding audio feedback
- Changing the scanning cursor size and color
- And more…
First you have the option of changing the system font to a bold typeface, making the letters thicker and easier to read.
The other new adjustment is called Dynamic Type. Moving the slider in the Larger Type section of Accessibility will increase the size of the font in apps that support Dynamic Type. For example the iOS Calendar, Notes, and Reminders all support Dynamic Type. Increasing the font size of the text in these apps isn’t new but allowing developers to use Dynamic Type in their apps is.
- New enhanced quality voices for VoiceOver and Speak Selection
- Increase contrast on some backgrounds for better legibility
- Visual Labels for On/Off buttons
- Turn off the motion of the parallax effect (that is the 3D effect you see when tilting your device back and forth in the main menu)