Archives for posts with tag: iPhone

Four years ago I got an IPhone 5S and have been happily using it about an hour a day. Catching up on news, Facebooking, checking email and playing Trivia Crack keep me enlightened and entertained.  Occasionally I use it as a phone when I’m away from the landline.  But the phone is getting stiff; imagine trying to double tap on a small spot with hammer-like intensity. There are rumors that 5S won’t be supported after July, so I reluctantly bit the bullet and decided on a IPhone 8.

For me there are the extra steps of reading about which phones work best with the voiceover technology I use and getting a Speed Dots screen protector to mark where the letters are for quicker typing. The typing is agonizingly slow but better than dictating when accuracy is required, like filling in my email address on a form.

Having read up on the transferring data from old to new phone process, I had my phone all backed up in the cloud and all my passwords in hand as I ventured to the Verizon store with a sympathetic friend. After confirming my choices, the young Verizon man put the phones near each other and told them to talk.  In a few minutes, it was done.  The new phone is a little bigger and has touch ID, so I only have to sign in by typing occasionally.  The ease of getting into the phone and more powerful and better sound are the main improvements I notice. Maybe all those improvements in the chip make it a little faster, but my typing speed still slows me down to the speed of a fast-walking tortoise.  I’ve got four times as much storage as I used to. I will probably load up with books to read when I get tired of gaming and Facebooking. There wasn’t a huge learning curve except having to reenter passwords on several apps. I thought the Cloud knew everything, but passwords didn’t transfer.

All this tech for less than a buck a day for the next two years. It is truly amazing, but I did get misty eyed as I surrendered my old IPhone to be wiped and reused somehow.  I hope its next owner loves it as much and gets as many hours of fun out of it as I did.  Goodbye sweet 5S!

Advertisements

I love word games and trivia. I’m not saying I’m particularly good at either, but let the games begin. Especially when the temperatures are below zero!

For a trivia game on my iPhone to be accessible, it must read questions, read answer possibilities and be untimed. Ideally it would also tell me whether I got the question right and what the right answer is. Free would be nice too, but once I’ve ascertained it is accessible, I might even part with a few bucks to play.

So far, Trivia Crack and Knowledge Trainer are kind of winners. Trivia Crack is a multi-player game and doesn’t voice the right answer. Knowledge can be played by oneself and at least says “wrong” when you are. I have an email out to the developers of Exquizit to ask before I plunk down $.99, but have received no answer in a week. I decided to make the big purchase and it turns out that the questions read but not much else. Hiss!

Word games must voice the letters and be simple to fill in. Dragging and dropping is too hard in my opinion and so is remembering a Scrabble board display full of letters. I want to develop my mind, not blow it. Best option so far is Clever Clues which is free. Seven words is fun, but the one that is accessible costs. Braingle is free and has all sorts of word, logic, math and other fun puzzles. Little Riddles is fairly accessible.

So I’ll hunt down friends to challenge on Trivia Crack and hope my addiction doesn’t leave Luna waiting too long for her next meal or walk.

Why play? I learn something, like what a Catherine wheel is—a kind of fireworks. And I’m doing what other folks are doing for fun. About half the third graders in a class I spoke to said they liked Trivia Crack and I just read three million people are playing it. I did not compare scores with the third graders!

The title of this blog could be the Six Days War, but I think that term has already been used in the Middle East. Because it was half price (a new one is coming out next week), I decided to take the plunge and buy an iPhone 5s. Here’s the report from the front lines:

Day 1:
Bought IPhone 5S from salesperson who didn’t know how to turn on the voiceover when we started. By the end he was excited about the possibilities as am I. My goal for today was learn to make a call on iPhone and I’ve done a couple. I also got the weather app to tell me about tomorrow’s weather. For the apps that involve much typing I’m going to wait for the speed dots which I ordered. They will give me some tactual orientation on the screen. So far so good. It stopped talking once but I toggled a switch and it started babbling again. I’m getting tired so better quit before I break it.

Day 2:
I woke up in the middle of a horrible dream about being totally lost in a graduate program in philosophy out east. Even I can figure out where the totally lost part of that dream came from. My Facebook friends sent lots of encouragement about tackling IPhones and one guy even sent links to tutorials.
I think my computer got jealous! I was reading on the Internet about the wonders of Siri and suddenly Internet Explorer wouldn’t work any more. Four hours later including a long session over the phone with the computer help desk at school and I have a new version of Internet Explorer which fixed the problem. After taking a nice walk between storms with Luna, I got back to work.
I sent myself a message, which Siri does fine, but she won’t delete the messages. It took me a while to paw around and find the delete button but I got the job done. I told her to find a recipe for baked corn fritters and she did nicely. I just told her to wake me in ten minutes, so we’ll find out how the alarm works. Tomorrow’s job is to skim an iPhone for seniors Bookshare book. Yes I can. The alarm rang and eventually stopped whether because I found and hit the delete button or because it got tired who knows.

Day 3:
My goal for today was to get so I could dictate to fill out forms instead of trying to type on their keyboard. Luckily I had to go to church and farmers’ market and cook corn for tomorrow’s brunch so I did accomplish something today. A neighbor figured out there was “dictate” as an option for messages and notes but not in apps like BARD and Newsline where I need it. A listserv of blind people got me two responses but their solutions didn’t work. Apple Care Support was closed by the time I called. I submitted the question on Applevis website. So all avenues were explored, but goal was not achieved.

Day 4:
I am making some progress today. Took my first two pictures, Luna’s hindquarters and a selfie that makes me look 100 pounds heavier mean and exhausted. That’s what fighting technology will do for you! No useful help from Applevis or listserv, just people saying “dictate” works for them. So I called Apple and talked to a pleasant woman who got to where she understood my question and then put me on hold for a half hour after which I hung up. While on hold I managed to get the dictate option to show up on Google search, but not on either of the blindness apps. Go figger!

Day 5:
Labor Day I labored a bit to use Newsline and WI Public Radio apps. Successfully enough to feel comfortable using them if I was away from my computer which is still easier to use. Then I did some practicing with the phone and message apps. Still a bit of panic when the phone rings to figure where to poke to answer. Then I signed up to receive emergency campus notifications by text. I think that will include storm notifications. Enough laboring for one day!

Day 6:
To check Verizon minutes and data usage, you have to have a second level of security created by picking an image (no link provided even if I knew what the image was to pick it). But under accessibility I did find a phone number where I could check usage. I asked Siri to check my usage and she said she couldn’t and corrected my pronunciation of Verizon. So now I’ve been corrected by Siri. I succeeded in downloading the Kindle app downloading a book and starting to read it. Whew! Buoyed by this success I signed into the BARD (books for the blind from NLS) app which thankfully one only has to key in email and password once to do.

So after six days, I can do what I want to do on the IPhone but often it’s slowly, very slowly. Now on to the next phase of learning, figuring out things to do where this technology will be a plus for me. That’ll involve trying a lot of apps and practicing tasks so they become easier and quicker. Siri and I aren’t best friends yet, but I do plan to go to that movie about a guy who falls in love with Siri, called “Her.”