Skip to content

Call our free helpline

0800 048 7642
How to use speak screen in iOS 10 for iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch

How to use speak screen in iOS 10 for iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch

Once ‘Speak Screen’ is enabled, all text on the screen is read aloud by simply swiping down from the top of the screen with two fingers.

To enable ‘Speak Screen’:

  1. Tap the ‘Settings’ icon on your home screen. Fig 1.
    Fig 1 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 1
  2. Tap on ‘General’. Fig 2.
    Fig 2 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 2
  3. Tap on ‘Accessibility’. Fig 3.
    Fig 3 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 3
  4. Under the ‘Vision’ section, tap on ‘Speech’. Fig 4.
    Fig 4 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 4
  5. Tap on the toggle switch next to ‘Speak Screen’. Fig 5.
    Fig 5 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 5
  6. When ‘Speak Screen’ is turned on you will see an option for ‘Highlight Content’. Fig 6.

Highlight Content’ highlights the text that as it is being read aloud. You can choose to have ‘Words’, ‘Sentences’ or ‘Words and Sentences’ highlighted.

  1. Tap on ‘Highlight Content’. Fig 6.
    Fig 6 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 6
  2. Tap the toggle next to ‘Highlight Content’. Fig 7.
    Fig 7 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 7
  3. The following options will be displayed:
    • Words
    • Sentences
    • Words and Sentences

    Tap on an option to select it. Fig 8.
    Fig 8 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 8

Note: You can customise the voice used for ‘Speech’ and the speed at which text is read aloud. See the article:  Speech Settings - iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch on this website for more information.

When you are happy with your settings, either tap the back button in the top left of the screen to return to the main ‘Accessibility’ settings screen or press your device’s ‘Home’ button to return to the home screen.

Using ‘Speak Screen’

  1. If you would like to hear the current screen of your device read aloud, swipe down from the top of the screen with two fingers.Alternatively, you can ask ‘Siri’ to do this: Launch ‘Siri’ (by pressing and holding the ‘Home’ button or by saying the “Hey Siri” command) and say “Speak screen”.
  2. When ‘Speak Screen’ is active, a controller will appear on the screen. In our example with have activated ‘Speak Screen’ while viewing the Notes Fig 9.
    Fig 9 - Speak Screen – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch iOS 10
    Fig 9

    The controller allows you to:
    • Play / Pause speaking. Fig 10 (1). 
    • Move Forwards/Backwards to the next/previous paragraph or list item. Fig 10 (2). 
    • Adjust the speech rate – tap the ‘Tortoise’ icon to slow speech down, tap the ‘Hare’ icon to speed speech up. Fig 10 (3).
    • Turn ‘Speak Screen’ off. Fig 10 (4). 
    • Minimise the controller by tapping the arrow button. Fig 10 (5).  

Note: You can also reposition the controller by pressing and holding your finger on the controller and dragging it to another part of the screen.

Fig 10 - The buttons on the 'Speak Screen' controller enable users to: * Play or  pause speaking, move forwards or backwards to the next item, adjust the speech rate
Fig 10

More information:

To change the voice used for ‘Speech’ and the speed at which text is read aloud, see the article:
Speech Settings - iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch on this website.

If you would like to be able to select what text is read aloud rather than the whole screen, see the article:
Speak Selection – iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch on this website.

Need some more help?

Call our free helpline 0800 048 7642 or email enquiries@abilitynet.org.uk

Need free IT Support at Home?

If you are older or disabled and need IT support at home, you can book a free home visit.