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for the Blind

Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss

What’s On Your iPhone Home Screen?

Date: 2/17/2018

by Bill Holton, AccessWorld correspondent

Did you recently start using an iPhone? You’ve learned to make calls and send and receive text messages, but now you’re wondering, what about all that “there’s an app for that,” you keep hearing about? Your family and friends have doubtless already told you about the Facebook app, and how apps make banking and shopping much easier than standing in line to complete your various transactions. But did you know there is also a treasure trove of apps that are either designed specifically for the visually impaired or more traditional consumer apps that can make use of your new iPhone with VoiceOver easier and more productive?

Let’s take reading, just as an example. Those talking books you now receive on cartridges and play in your NLS player—there’s an app for that. It’s called BARD mobile, and using it you can download and play any Talking Book in the library nearly instantly. While on the consumer side, Audible.com offers an app that plays any of more than 200,000 commercially-recorded titles, including the latest best sellers.

Whenever you start your iPhone that very first screen is known as your Home Screen. It’s where you put the apps you use most often, and you can arrange the apps any way you like. Here’s how:

Select the app you wish to move. Perform a one-finger double tap and hold gesture, which is to say tap once, twice, but on the second tap continue to hold until you hear VoiceOver say “Started editing.” Now, one-finger swipe up or down until you hear the “Drag (name of app)” option. One finger double tap there. Next, move to the place where you wish to relocate your favorite app to, either to a new position on a screen or to another screen by using the three finger swipe left or right gesture to move from screen to screen. Now, perform another swipe up or down until you find the option you wish, either placing the app you are moving to a position just before or just after the highlighted app. One finger double tap one last time and voila! Sounds complicated, but follow along, and you will see just how easy it is. And you only have to do it once—once rearranged, your screens will retain their new app positions.

As mentioned, you can have any number of screens containing app icons, but the default, Home Screen is the most convenient, so it’s where you will wish to put your most use apps. Perhaps Phone, Message, and Facebook? What else should you put on your Home Screen? We’ll take you on a tour of some of our favorite “must-have” access apps in the February issue of AccessWorld!

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