article by Graham Page
One of the uses of smartphones that excite many visually impaired people is undoubtedly the ability to read paper-based text documents. Previously KNFB reader was acknowledged as being among the best around, despite its high price of £100 or so.
With the release of version 3.0 however, the accuracy remains but reading scanned documents has become difficult and it’s hard to recommend KNFB reader at the price. There are however some decent alternatives.
Voice Dream Scanner
One of the most promising of these is Voice Dream Scanner, from the same developer as the well respected Voice Dream Reader. I find it very accurate and quick. I find it more accurate than KNFB Reader in fact.
The main drawback at the moment is that it will only read text as though it is in a single column. If there are multiple columns the text is often read as though it were one column. I am told this is to be fixed in an upcoming release.
For many purposes though, Voice Dream Scanner is great and at the price of £5.99, it’s a bargain. If you also have Voice Dream Reader you can use the Voice Dream Scanner from within the Voice Dream Reader app. If you use Voice Dream Reader you can also perform OCR on images such as PDF files that are pictures of documents. This is now my OCR app of choice for the iPhone.
Voice Dream Scanner available on Apple Store on your phone