Braille Institute iTech Classes

Gestures. (for buttons guide scroll to the bottom of this page).

Gestures to remember in Zoom:

  1. 1-finger Tap – enables/activates apps
  2. 1-finger Slide – scrolls the screen
  3. 3-finger Double Tap – toggles between magnification and normal size
  4. 3-finger Swipe (in magnification) – moves the screen
  5. 3-finger Double Tap Swipe up/down – increases/decreases magnification

Gestures to remember in Voice:

  1. 1-finger Flick left/right – moves between apps & items
  2. 1-finger Tap – reads current app
  3. 2-fnger Singe Tap – Shuts up voice
  4. 1-finger Double Tap – activates apps & other item

Special gestures for VoiceOver – iPad accessibility feature

VoiceOver uses a series of simple gestures to interact with the iPad. They include the following:

Tap once to select an item onscreen and hear a description of it. Selected items appear with a black rectangle around them, called the VoiceOver cursor.

  • Double-tap to activate it.
  • Drag your finger to move between items onscreen.

You’ll hear a click as you move off one item and onto another, and VoiceOver will begin reading the next item.

  • Flick left or right with one finger to move between items.

Can’t find an app or a menu choice? You could search for it by dragging your finger around the screen, but you can also simply flick left and right to move the VoiceOver cursor to the next or previous available item.

By flicking, you can make precise choices without having to physically find an object onscreen.

For example, imagine you’re trying to find a specific e-mail in your e-mail app. Keep flicking, and VoiceOver will read each   e-mail down the list until you find the one you want. Double-tap anywhere on the screen to open the e-mail.

  • Use a two-finger double tap to play or pause (music, video, speaking).
  • Use a three-finger tap on the home screen tells you how many pages of apps there are and which page you’re currently on.
  • Flick three fingers left or right to move between your different home screens.
  • Flick three fingers up or down to scroll one page at a time.
  • Flick two fingers up to read everything on the current screen, including menus and buttons.
  • Flick two fingers down to read everything from the current position forward.
  • Use a three-finger double-tap toggles between VoiceOver speech off and speech on.

Triple-tapping the Home button can be set as a quick and easy way to toggle VoiceOver on and off. You’ll you find the option to turn on Triple-tap Home at the bottom of the Accessibility page.

You might think of Setting VoiceOver to be activated with a triple tap of the Home button enables you to easily call on a digital reading companion whenever you can’t read yourself.

Apps you should know:


Siri, Apple’s intelligent assistant, helps you do the things you do every day.1 All you have to do is ask. Say something like “Tell Jay I’m running late” or “Remind me to make reservations for Saturday.” Siri can send messages, place phone calls, schedule meetings, and even turn on and off VoiceOver, Guided Access and Invert Colors. And because Siri is integrated with VoiceOver, you can ask where the nearest sushi restaurant is and hear the answer read out loud.

How to enable and use “Hey Siri” hands free mode in iOS 8:

If you go into the settings for Siri (Settings > General > Siri). From there, simply ensure that the switch for “Allow ‘Hey Siri'” is turned on. You will now find an option called Voice Activation. Turn this on, and you can yell at Siri without ever having to touch your phone. As this feature would eat your battery for lunch, it is only active when your iDevice is plugged in to a power source – so be sure to plug your phone in before you start yelling.

Speak Screen

If you have a hard time reading the text on your iOS device, use Speak Screen to read your email, iMessages, web pages, and books to you. Turn on Speak Screen and swipe down from the top with two fingers, or just tell Siri to Speak Screen and have all the content of the page read back to you. You can adjust the voice’s dialect and speaking rate, and have words highlighted as they’re being read.


Dictation lets you talk where you would type. Tap the microphone button on the keyboard, say what you want to write, and your iOS device converts your words (and numbers and characters) into text. So it’s easy to type an email, note, or URL — without typing at all.

Name That Song

Siri can now listen to a song playing and tell you what it is. Just ask Siri something like, “what song is this?” and Siri will listen for a few seconds, then try to figure it out. If Siri can identify the song, it will tell you the name and artist – then offer to let you buy the song on iTunes. This is great for when you are listening to a song on certain radio services or stations where the song information is not accessible to those who are blind. It can also come in handy when at a store or restaurant and you hear a song you like, but you have no idea what it is.

“Hey, Siri” works in any situation as long as the iPhone or iPad is plugged in, even if the screen is locked or if an application is open and running. Users can simply speak naturally, and do not need to pause after saying “Hey, Siri.”

In addition to the new handsfree mode, will Siri also tap into the HomeKit features Apple has baked into iOS 8. As new applications and third-party accessories hit the market, users will be able to use Siri to accomplish tasks like adjusting the temperature in their home, closing the garage door, or even locking the front door.

Explore and work with these apps:


  • Open & learn main interface of calendar. Look at each tab
  • Pull up a certain date on the calendar.
  • Have them add an event to the calendar.
  • Edit an event
  • Delete an event.


  • Open and learn clock. Open different tabs.
  • World clock
  • Alarms
  • Stop Watch – Use it!
  • Timer – Use it!
  • Add an alarm
  • Add a clock for another time zone i.e. London England; Odessa Ukraine J


  • Open notes app
  • Try different areas in Note and learn it
  • Type in some text
  • Add a new note
  • Find where note’s list is
  • Delete a note

Reasons to learn:

  • Helps one keep track of your lives’ events.
  • Management of medication, when to take it – Diet, Doc appts, etc.
  • Keep track of washer and drier with the timer.
  • Use timer when baking or cooking.
  • Calendar, keep track of birthdays, anniversaries and any special event in one’s life.

Contacts App

  • Learning about Contacts app:
    • Used to maintain an address book
    • One can store:
      • Names- First and Last and Company Name
      • Phone numbers, home, work, mobile and many others.
      • Email addresses
      • Physical addresses
      • Websites
      • Instant messaging names
    • Depending on the device one has, on a iPhone you can make phone calls, and on a iPad you cannot, you can make face time and face time audio calls from either one
    • If a physical address is in the contacts, one can tap on it and get a map and driving/walking directions.
    • Contact App Orientation
    • If in portrait mode, the list of contacts is on the top half of the screen and the contact details is on the bottom half.
    • If in Landscape mode, the list of contacts is on the right side of the screen, and the contact details is on the right half.
  • Adding a contact [TASK]
    • To add a contact, tap on the add button which is a plus ‘+’ sign. It is found at the bottom of the contact list pain, at the bottom right.
    • Follow the fields you need to fill out. Just tap, or double tap depending on your access technology.

Mail App

  • The mail app split up into pains. Look at the pains, sides, find how they fall depending on landscape and portrait modes.
  • Look at the mail list pain and study it.
  • Try to read a message, how it comes on the right pain when tapped on.
  • Try to delete, reply and forward.
  • Try to access the different mail boxes.
  • Try to compose a new message.
    • Either type an email, or select a contact from the contact app.
    • Study and try compose screen.

Magnifying Glass with Light

  • Magnifying Glass with Light (US Top 25 in Biz Category)
  • Passport Photo Booth (US Top 50 in Travel Category)
  • Ultimate Photo Browser
  • Compass with Light
  • My Eyes – Eye Prescriptions Safe Box
  • Photo Time Lock – Time Delay Image Lock
  • Ultimate Photo Browser Lite
  • Magnifying Glass with Light Pro

This free magnifying app may be very useful for people with low vision when print is too small or the room is just too dark. And also, can be very handy when you find yourself in a dimly lit restaurant or store where the print in the label is too small. Helps to read the contents rather easily.

Just point the iPhone/iPad camera at whatever you need to magnify, move the on-screen slider, and the full screen display will enlarge whatever you are looking at up to 5X. If it is dim or dark, the iPhone/iPad LED light can be turned on with an on-screen button to light up the object being viewed.

Digital Magnifier with Flashlight

The features in this magnifying app include:

  • Image Capture
  • Auto-Focus Lock
  • Magnifies from 1.0X to 5.0X & Lighted View and can be controlled by a slider or a pinch to Zoom In/Out
  • Portrait or Landscape orientation.
  • Support Front Camera
  • Full Screen User Interface
  • Auto turn on built-in light in low light condition
  • A light level control (onscreen slider) allows the user to adjust the brightness of the magnification.
  • Shake it to hide/show all control buttons.

This app works with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad only.

Buttons on iPad: 

Using the Apple iPad is fairly intuitive, but if you want to save time, have a look at the following iPad buttons that you’ll use frequently:

  • The sleep/wake button: This button is on the top of your iPad, and you use it to put your iPad’s screen to sleep or wake it up.


  • Home button/Touch ID sensor (iPad 2 and iPad mini only): No matter what you’re doing, you can press the Home button at any time to display the Home screen on your iPad. If you have an iPad Air 2 or iPad mini 3, your Home button doubles as a Touch ID sensor, and you can use your fingerprint (or a passcode) to unlock your phone and authenticate purchases.

  • App icons: Each icon shown on the touchscreen launches an iPad app. Twenty apps come with your iPad, and you can add more (many are free) by downloading them from the App Store.

  • Front camera: The front camera comes in handy when you’re FaceTime chatting. It’s not particularly good for taking still photos.

  • Rear camera: iPads have a better camera (than the one in front) on the backside, just below the sleep/wake button. The iPad 2’s rear camera captures decent video at 720p and shoots fair-to-middling stills; all other iPads have rear cameras that are better than the front one and shoot superb HD video at 1080p as well as take very nice stills.


  • Volume up and volume down buttons: The upper button increases the volume; the lower button decreases it.


  • Ring/silent switch: When the switch is set to silent mode — the down position, with an orange dot visible on the switch — your iPad doesn’t make any sound when you receive new mail or an alert pops up on the screen.

    Note that the ring/silent switch doesn’t silence what you think of as “expected” sounds, which are sounds you expect to hear in a particular app. Therefore, it doesn’t silence the iTunes or Videos apps, nor will it mute games and other apps that emit noises. About the only thing the ring/silent switch mutes are “unexpected” sounds, such as those associated with notifications from apps or the iPad operating system (iOS).

    If the switch doesn’t mute your notification sounds when engaged (that is, you can see the little orange dot on the switch), look for the following little screen orientation icon to the left of the battery icon near the top of your screen:


    If you see this icon when you flick the ring/silent switch, you’ve selected the Lock Rotation option in the Settings app’s General pane.

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