Voice Cam Version 1.1.0

On May 8, Voice Cam 1.1.0 was released. There is now voice guidance to
help with camera position and other improvements. Again, I tried this app
with and without the StandScan on pages of plain text. Occasionally,
I got a few garbled words but mostly it said “no words detected.”

There is a YouTube video called
Voice Cam: App
for Blind and Visually Impaired
showing a demonstration of the
Android version. It is reading dry cleaning instructions, signs, and that
sort of thing. I found a link to a similar one for the iOS version
but the video had been “removed by the user.”

If anyone is having success with this app, please post a comment
and let us know how you are doing it.

TapTapSee Version 2.1.6

  • Version described in the book: 2.1.2
  • Date of latest version: March 25, 2014

As far as functionality, this app is essentially the same as
described in the book. However, what has changed somewhat is
their pricing structure. They now offer a 50-picture pack for $4.95;
a 100-picture pack for $7.95; one month of unlimited pictures for $9.95;
and three months of unlimited pictures for $24.95.

Olloclip Now Has a Quick-Flip Case

For those who find it inconvenient to remove the iPhone’s case to
attach their Olloclip lens, now Olloclip has a case with a flip-out
corner. The corner of the case rotates back over the top of the phone
clearing the corner for attaching the lens. The hard plastic
case is one of those that grips the sides of the phone but is completely
open at the top and bottom.

A very cool thing about this case is that the part of the case
that flips away from the lens corner, rotates all the way to the other
side of the phone. It lands just right so that the edge of the
rotated piece can press directly on the volume up button. When the
phone is in landscape orientation, this piece becomes a shutter
button and is very convenient to press with your right index finger.

The case is available in models for the 5 and 5s and for the 4
and 4s. It comes with an adapter for the corresponding iPod. It also
comes with an accessory allowing the user to attach the case to a
tripod either horizontally or vertically.

The Olloclip website has more information about the
Olloclip Quick-Flip Case.

Prizmo Version 3.1.5

  • Version described in the book: 3.1.1
  • Date of latest version: March 18, 2014

The What’s New notes for the latest version of Prizmo indicate that
it fixes a Voiceover issue that prevented photos from being selected
in the photo album. Everything about this app is still exactly
as I described in the book.

TextGrabber Version 4.3.1

  • Version described in the book: 4.1
  • Date of latest version: March 18, 2014

TextGrabber now requires iOS version 7.0 or later. Although the layout
of the main screen is exactly as I described in the book, curiously
though, if you flick through the elements on the screen, the order is not
the same as the screen. The Viewfinder is now first instead of
being between the rows of buttons as it is physically. I don’t think
it was this way in earlier versions.

Scanning iTunes Gift Cards

Recently, a friend asked me if I covered scanning itunes gift
cards in my book. I could only say, nope. Actually, it never occurred
to me. So we began digging a bit to see what we could find out about it.

Beginning with iOS 7.0, it is now possible to scan iTunes gift
cards with your device’s camera. This can be done from the itunes Store
app or the App Store app. Just select the Featured tab and there
will be a Redeem button. After pressing the Redeem button, you will
be prompted to log in with your Apple id. You will then find
a Use Camera button and also a text box where you can write in the
number the old-fashioned way.

Applevis has a podcast
that gives a great demonstration of the whole process. You can’t
use all iTunes gift cards. It has to be one with a black box
around the code number.

Voice Cam Version 1.0.0

  • App: Voice Cam
  • Publisher: INFOGP
  • Category: Health and Fitness
  • Price: $2.95
  • Version: 1.0.0
  • Size: 8.2mb
  • Requires Internet: No

Voice Cam uses the iPhone’s video camera to detect text and speak
it aloud. It can speak in five different English-language accents
and the output can be set to one of three reading speeds. The
Developer says it will be useful for blind and visually impaired persons.

I have tried this app with and without the Standscan. While it
has been able to say a few words, I do not believe that this app
is sufficiently developed to be usable.

iOS 7.1 Brought a Small Change to the Camera App for the iPhone 5s

iOS 7.1 has brought a small change to the default Camera app but
only for the iPhone 5s. An “auto” mode has been added to HDR. Instead
of just saying “Selected” when HDR is on, this control now reports its
state as “HDR On,” “HDR Off,” or “HDR Auto.” If HDR Auto is on, the
camera app will use HDR if it detects both bright lights and deep
shadows in the same picture.

When you double-tap the HDR control, a small menu will pop up that
will have three options: HDR Auto, HDR On, and HDR Off. Tapping one of
these and waiting a few seconds should select it. But I am
finding that Voiceover doesn’t always detect the menu and tapping
the desired option doesn’t always change it. Try it a few times,
eventually it will work.

RedLaser Version 5.1.0

  • Version described in the book: 5.0.0
  • Date of latest version: March 26, 2014

The latest version of RedLaser brought enhancements related to
creating and sharing grocery and gift lists; added more pricing and
availability info; added more coupons and deals; and included
performance enhancements. But in its basic ability to scan barcodes,
little has changed. This continues to be my very favorite barcode
scanning app. I use it often at the grocery store with great success.

Sending Greeting Cards

In September 2013, Apple discontinued support for its Cards app.
This was very unfortunate because that app was very accessible and also
really terrific.

Recently, I tested more than a half dozen apps for sending greeting
cards or postcards. They were all ones that allowed the sender to include
a photo from the camera roll or the app provided an opportunity
to take a new picture. Then, somewhere the card was printed and mailed
to the designated recipient.

I tested Ink, Go Cards, PaperWoven, Cartolina, JustWink, and Card2You. By
far, the best one I tested was Touchnote. The app is fairly
accessible, with most buttons labeled and there is some description
of the card designs. My recipient said the printing was on high-quality
paper. It’s not quite up to Apple’s Cards app but it did get the job done.

The Giraffe Reader

A new device is now available to assist with scanning text using
an iPhone. Called the Giraffe Reader, the device is similar to the
Standscan in that it holds the phone a precise distance from the text.
However, it does not include any lighting. It is quite a bit smaller
than the Standscan and unfolds very quickly. It was developed for blind
users by its creator Sam Jewell in the United Kingdom. Currently,
it sells for $45 U.S. You can get more information at
Giraffe Reader.

About this Site

The Book, Get the Picture: Viewing the World with the iPhone Camera was published by National Braille Press in Febuary 2014. It provides a great deal of information to help people who are blind use the camera on an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad to perform many daily tasks such as identify currency, recognize objects, even take pictures for a Facebook page. The book is available from National Braille Press in embossed braille and several electronic formats.

Since the world of iDevices is changing by the minute, this site provides an opportunity for readers of the book to share their experiences, inform each other about new and updated apps, and much more.