Tech Capabilities: iOS Voice Mail Transcriptions

Have you ever wondered how to increase independence through the various apps and devices available for the blind? Blind Vet Tech’s Tech Capabilities offers suggestions to achieve these goals.

When cellular phones first gained popularity, we never needed to worry about telemarketers hounding us. Things definitely changed as many of us solely rely on smart phones for personal to business functions. This results in telemarketers and other entities calling us. Whenever I receive a call from an unknown number or unlisted number, I quickly dismiss the call and let. It go to voice mail. Unfortunately when the entity leaves a message, I really hesitate to listen to it. Apple added a nice feature that transcribes your voice mail automatically. Yes, Google Talk offered this feature for a number of years, and even sends you an email with the transcribed message, so its nice that Apple caught up. Here is how you can listen to a transcribed voice mail message. Please note , I am using an iPhone 8 running iOS 11.

  • Lock Screen
    • Place Voice Over’s focus on the notification for the voice mail message
    • Swipe downwards with the rotor set to action to More and double tap
    • Voice Over will start reading the message automatically
  • Phone app
    • You first need to listen to the message in the Voice Mail tab
    • Place Voice Over’s focus on the number or caller’s name and swipe right twice
    • Voice will automatically start reading the message

Hope you enjoyed learning how to read a transcribed voice mail message in iOS through Blind Vet Tech’s Tech Capabilities.

Tech Capabilities: Grabbing PDF’s from Mail and Reading in Voice Dream Reader

Have you ever wondered how to increase independence through the various apps and devices available for the blind? Blind Vet Tech’s Tech Capabilities offers suggestions to achieve these goals.

PDF’s functions as the bane for every aspect of our digital lives. Whether you need to read an instructional manual, apply for a job, review research or proposals, or even apply for benefits, you cannot avoid them. Sometimes you just need to be able to grab a PDF and listen to it. Voice Dream Reader accomplishes this goal flawlessly. Even better yet, you can place a PDF in the Loader folder, and it will magically appear on your iPhone’s bookshelf. Here is how.

From your computer, make sure you have iCloud set up

Enable iCloud syncing from the Voice Dream Reader settings on your iOS device

If you do not use iCloud, just save the PDF to a cloud storage solution, like One Drive, Dropbox, or Google Drive, and and use the Add function in Voice Dream Reader

From your computer, save the Pdf into the iCloud, Reader, Loader folder

Open up Voice Dream Reader while connected to the internet and wait a moment for the PDF to download automatically

Open the PDF and enjoy listening to the PDF through your favorite TTS voice and using your headset’s controls to jump in the PDF

FYI, in iOS 11 you can fill out fillable PDF’s you download and open up in Preview, but not Voice Dream Reader

    • Hope you enjoyed learning how transferring PDF’s from your computer to Voice Dream Reader allows easy reading on the go through Blind Vet Tech’s Tech Capabilities.

      Blind Vet Tech Monthly Tech Talk for September

      This is an announcement for the Blind Vet Tech Monthly Tech Talk for September 21. This month we turn our attention towards our new conferencing platform, and what is new in iOS 11. Zoom is a highly accessible conferencing platform allowing participants to connect via their computers, smart phones, or through a dial in number, see below for how to do this and coming shortcut kets.

      Apple releases iOS 11 on September 19, and we are super excited to share what we know. Voice Over received many updates and tweaks, earning our trust and approval. The couple of updates exciting us include the ability to fill out PDF’s, recognize a bit of text in images through a built into Voice Over OCR, find facial features in Photos, and ability to drag and drop multiple items. Zoom users will enjoy the ability to place your finger on the menu bar and automatically zoom into it without Zoom on, clean up of the Control Center for easier navigation, and the easier to see Dock and app switchers.

      Participate on the call through Zoom by:

      • Thursday, July 20
      • 1900 Central Time

      Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android by clicking here

      iPhone users simply tap on the phone number below or dial:

      • (646) 876-9923,,7854091838#
      • or (669) 900-6833,,7854091838#

      Zoom enables one to control their participation through a series of hotkeys. The table below lists the possible actions and how to complete it based on your connection method:

      Action Zoom for Windows Zoom for MacOS Zoom for iOS Dial into Zoom
      Mute Alt A Command Shift A Mute Button on app Star 6
      Raise hand to prompt moderator Alt Y Option Y Raise/Lower hand Button on app Star 9

      Stay Informed

      Stay up to date with the latest news and announcements from the Blind Vet Tech team, by doing one of the following:

      If you have any questions, comments, or requests, feel free to send us an email here. All of our podcasts and other information related to Veterans, blindness, acceptance of a disability, and other resources may be found at

      Don’t miss another Blind Vet Tech teleconference, click here to see a list of our teleconferences and others we support.

      Tech Capabilities: Shopping with SeeingAI, Uber, and AIRA Through Your iPhone

      Have you ever wondered how to increase independence through the various apps and devices available for the blind? Blind Vet Tech’s Tech Capabilities offers suggestions to achieve these goals.

      From assembling a shopping list, traveling to the store, and locating each item, shopping poses several barriers for the blind. Combine Microsoft’s SeeingAI, AIRA, Uber, and your iPhone, and you can quickly get on with your day. Here is how.

      • Open Microsoft’s Seeing AI and switch to the product channel
      • Scan the various products you need to purchase, but swipe to share
      • From the share menu, select Notes and add it to your shopping list note (for extra points you can make this a checklist)
      • After compiling your shopping list, either hire an Uber to the store, or call an AIRA agent and let them handle your Uber trip
      • When you are at the store, call an AIRA agent,, and share or inform them about your shopping list to let them guide you around
      • Checkoff items on your Notes’ shopping list, checkout, and hire a Uber home

      Hope you enjoyed learning how shopping becomes easier with Microsoft SeeingAI, Uber, AIRA, and an iPhone through Blind Vet Tech’s Tech Capabilities.

      Tech Capabilities: Using Seeing AI, QR Reader, and Safari to Redeem Movies

      Have you ever wondered what is possible through the various devices and apps available? Blind Vet Tech Tech Capabilities demonstrates how to fulfill a task through tech solutions. This inaugural post will list how one may redeem a movie code for iTunes only using an iPhone running iOS 11.

      • Open up Microsoft’s Seeing AI and set the channel to Short Text.
      • Scan the various pieces of paper inside the movie case until you find the insert with the redemption code.
      • In iOS 11, open up the camera app and scan the page. You do not need to take a picture, just wait for Voice Over to announce that a QR code was located
      • Swipe to the left or go to the top of the Camera app to find the redirection link, and tap on it.
      • After Safari opens up the page, select the appropriate streaming service, i.e. iTunes, Google Play, etc…, to obtain a digital copy.
      • If the QR code cannot be located, change Seeing AI’s channel to document. Recognize the page and follow the instructions.

      Hope you enjoyed learning about your Tech Capabilities to redeem the digital copy of a movie through your iOS device using Seeing AI, Camera app (or other QR reader), Safari, and iTunes.