Saturday, February 22, 2014
@Voice Aloud Reader
This is a short review of the Android app @Voice Aloud Reader (VAR). VAR is a great tool for reading webpages and news articles aloud. When looking at a webpage or a news article on Zite, you can transfer the text to VAR to be read aloud. But let's look at how to set up VAR.
After installing VAR you will be presented a series of controls at the bottom of a page of text. There is an arrow button to start and stop reading. A left and right arrow to advance or backup the text being read. Then there is a little up arrow. This up arrow brings some significant controls. There are three sliders to adjust the the rate of the read aloud, the pitch and the volume of the voice. The best part of these sliders is that you can set the reading speed exactly to your preferences.
When you are at a webpage or in an app and you wish to read something, you look for the share page icon. On most Android devices and on the Kindle Fire this icon looks like three dots forming an arrowhead. Tap the arrowhead and you will be presented with the choice of sharing the page with VAR. Once selected the main article will be extracted into VAR. Once there the article will be read aloud. Sentences are highlighted as they are read. For easy reading VAR has both a day and night mode. I prefer to read with night time mode (see the picture). This is so slick and quick that choosing to read things aloud is very natural and a breeze.
If the print is too small for you simply make a small swipe down with your finger. This will bring up a line with a plus or minus magnifying lens. Tap on the plus or minus sign to adjust font size. You can also start reading at any particular point by double tapping with one finger. Additionally if you open VAR settings, you can choose to follow what has been copied to the clipboard. In this manner you can read any text that can be highlighted and copied. This is helpful for reading email aloud. To sun up VAR is simple and easy to use. It makes reading items aloud a quick and seamless process. Best of all @Voice Aloud Reader is free in either the Google Play Store or the Amazon App Store. @Voice Aloud Reader works with both Android tablets and the Kindle Fire.
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