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Apps for Independence in the Community and Orientation and Mobility

Apps for Independence in the Community and Orientation and Mobility



I have a penchant for buying apps to check which work best for various activities. Here are a few favorites that are either specifically designed for blind or visually impaired users, or are apps that work well with VoiceOver. Many are multiplatform and available on iOS via the Apple Store, Android via Google Play, and Windows Phone via Windows Phone Store.




GPS Apps:


Apple Maps and Siri (built in iOS app, free)

Apple Maps is built into iOS devices and can provide spoken location information and pedestrian directions, but it needs to tie into other apps to provide routing directions that involve public transportation



Google Maps with Google Now and Talkback (free)

Can provide location and directions with spoken information


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/google-maps/id585027354?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.apps.maps&hl=en]



BlindSquare

Terrific GPS app that is tailored to travlers who are blind and visually impaired. It integrates with other apps, such as Google Maps and Transit to provide route details with public transportation. Best value for price and features in this category.


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/blindsquare/id500557255?mt=8]



Nearby Explorer (expensive)

Full featured GPS app that is Android only and expensive but available on APH Quota Funds)


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.aph.avigenie&hl=en]



Seeing Eye GPS (expensive)

Full featured GPS app that has been developed specifically for blind and low vision travelers. Free to download but requires subscription to use. There is also a fully paid version created for the VA Program, but it is very, very expensive and things change quickly with technology so who knows what will be available as options by the time your reach the “break even” point of paying rather than subscribing.


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/seeing-eye-gps/id668624446?mt=8]



Sendero GPS LookAround (free)

Gives basic information about location and what is nearby


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sendero-gps-lookaround/id386831856?mt=8]



Ariadne

Very handy and accurate app for providing information about travel environment, such as direction of travel, landmarks, addresses, and street names, but does not generate point to point route directions.


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ariadne-gps/id441063072?mt=8]



Navigon North America (expensive)

General purpose navigation app that has pedestrian mode as well as vehicle mode with spoken announcements, relatively expensive


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/navigon-north-america/id321506742?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.navigon.navigator_checkout_us&hl=en]




Transportation and Route Planning:


RideScout (free)

Transportation planning app that includes description of route with time and price comparisons for public transit, driving, pay services like Uber and taxis, biking, etc.


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ridescout-routes-schedules/id574125726?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ridescoutapp.android.ridescout]



Google Maps (free)

Great way to have a national, in fact an international connection to travel planning. Allows user to select directions based on travel modes of vehicle, bicycle, pedestrian, or transit


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/google-maps/id585027354?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.apps.maps&hl=en]


[http://www.windowsphone.com/en-us/store/app/google-maps/7912a831-fb6e-4e48-8c97-3984d9eb03c1]



CapMetro (free)

Austin area public transit, but many transit companies have their own app that can be searched for in app store, free


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/capmetro/id787315615?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=co.bytemark.cmta]


[http://www.windowsphone.com/en-us/store/app/capmetro/ba45ef5c-4680-4f15-aece-d71e9e98adf0]



Transit (free)

Transportation planning app with large bold numbers for bus routes


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/transit-app-now-citi-bike/id498151501?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.thetransitapp.droid&hl=en]



Where To?

To find what is nearby, such as restaurants, banks, etc.; paid version seems to work best with VoiceOver


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/where-to-find-best-places/id903955898?mt=8 ]



HopStop

Transportation planning app for walking, buses, subways, rail, and taxi


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/hopstop-transit-directions/id303217144?mt=8]




Accessibility:


KNFBReader (expensive)

Text to speech by photograping print with automatic reading available and tactile guidance for aligning camera; expensive but very reliable and easy to use.


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/knfbreader/id849732663?mt=8]



Vision Assist

This app is like having a CCTV in your pocket, complete with options for zoom, contrast, reverse polarity, freeze frame, etc.


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/visionassist/id502356279?mt=8]



VoiceDream Reader

Document reader that reads many formats of documents and has high quality voice with available options for fine tuning the playback of the text. There is also a lite version which is free.


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/voice-dream-reader/id496177674?mt=8]



LookTel Recognizer

Allows user to make their own database of recognizable items and then give spoke labels, such as a favorite cereal that can then be scanned for by its box or packaging at the store. Also has a barcode reader for identifining many items without having to program them


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/looktel-recognizer/id501088555?mt=8]



Text Grabber

Text to speech using optical character recognition (OCR) by photographing text with the camera


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/textgrabber-+-translator-recognize/id438475005?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.abbyy.mobile.textgrabber.full&hl=en]



Text Detective

Text to speech using optical character recognition (OCR) by photographing text with the camera


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/textdetective/id541494875?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.blindsight.textdetective&hl=en]



EyeNote (free)

Money identifier


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/eyenote/id405336354?mt=8]



LookTel Money Reader

Money identifier


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/looktel-money-reader/id417476558?mt=8]



Color Identifier

Color identifier (choose basic colors once added unless you would like much more modern or esoteric names for colors)


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/color-identifier/id363346987?mt=8]



TapTapSee

Can take photographs and describe what is in the photograph or describe what a photograph is if it is already in your camera roll


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/taptapsee-blind-visually-impaired/id567635020?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.msearcher.taptapsee.android&hl=en]



Drafts

Basic note taker


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/id905337691?mt=8]




QR Code Scanning:


Scan

Easy QR code (quick resonpse code) reader


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/scan-qr-code-barcode-reader/id411206394?mt=8]


[https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=me.scan.android.scan]


[http://www.windowsphone.com/en-us/store/app/scan-qr-code-and-barcode-reader/c62d7a1c-c336-4394-84d0-2ea4913fc891]




Weather:


Dark Sky

Weather app that tells how long until rain is at your present location


[https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dark-sky-weather-radar-hyperlocal/id517329357?mt=8]



Submitted by Chris Tabb, TSBVI Outreach




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