Text to Speech with Speak Selection Even Better in iOS 6 – Highlights Words as they are Spoken

Speak Selection may have been the most widely appreciated accessibility feature in iOS 5. I wrote about it in November of 2011. Speak Selection reads aloud any selected text on an iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch. Now there is the option of having each word highlighted as it is spoken. This can make it easier for the reader to track what he or she is reading.

As is the case with all accessibility features in iOS, the highlighting must be turned on. To turn it on, the user must go to:

 Settings – General — Accessibility — Speak  Selection

3 thoughts on “Text to Speech with Speak Selection Even Better in iOS 6 – Highlights Words as they are Spoken

  1. I am hoping this might help students with tracking and improving reading “stamina.” There are many super programs attached to a hefty fee which are more comprehensive, with note taking capabilities, etc., but this is in the realm of universal access – love it.

  2. It’s good to see Apple’s commitment to helping those with disabilities to be able to use the iPad in the fullest way possible. The disabled aren’t the only ones who benefit from this commitment, though. I have a chronic illness that affects the way I usually do things and so take advantage of the Speak Selection feature. I find, though, that the changes in iOS6 to the Speak Selection feature require a big adjustment, at least in my case. In iOS5, text could be selected and then you could choose from the menu to either have the text spoken, copied, or defined. Now it’s either-or: either you can turn on the Speak Selection feature and have text spoken or you can turn the feature off and use the copy/define options, but not both at the same time. Additionally, after you turn off Speak Selection and go back to using the Copy/Define menu, the copy function will then only work for one word at a time. In order to restore the copy/define menu so that multiple words or sentences can be selected and the appropriate task performed, you will have to exit the app and reopen it. I enjoyed using Speak Selection in iOS5 but right now I’m more frustrated that the changes are problematic. Hopefully, Apple will reinstate the ability to choose what you want to do, right in iBooks (and other apps) in the very near future.

  3. Pingback: Useful iOS features for teachers (iPad specific) « Making things… Learning Things

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