Connectivity Issues with Perkins Mini Braille Display

Braille on Apple Products

Hi everyone,

I currently own a Perkins/Seika Mini braille display, and it’s the first-ever braille display I’ve owned and connected with my iPhone. I’m having a problem with the Mini, and was wondering if it was a bug iOS has with displays, or if it’s my actual device.

The issue I’m having is that every now and then, I’ll pan the display to see what else is on the line as the Mini only has 16 cells. Only, it won’t work. I’ll have to hit the backward panning button and then the forward-panning button from once to a few times to even get to see the rest of the line. I am currently looking into buying the VarioUltra 20, but if buying this would not fix my current issue, I’d like to know. So…anyone using displays with iPhones, do you have this problem? Does your display ever freeze in this way? Or is the Perkins Mini just not the best at Bluetooth connectivity?

In addition to this, I have another question. Have any of you had to go into VoiceOver settings, braille, and click on your already paired device to get it to work? I’ve had my Min for a year and a half, and occasionally I’ll turn bluetooth on on the Mini and the iPhone, and I still have to do this.

Thanks for any possible answers on these questions.



Submitted by Lielle ben simon on Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Club AppleVis Member

Hi, i have a VarioUltra 40, and to me, i had no notice to this on my braille display. my unit works fine with ios and bleutooth connectivity.
sometimes it happands to me that my braille display disconnect from my iPhone, but it happands to me seldom.

Hi, Thanks for letting me know that this isn't an issue with VarioUltra, at least. Occasional disconnection I can understand, it's technology. Failing happens. I'm relieved to know that reading works as expected. :)

Submitted by Scott Davert on Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

The only thing about the VU is that you have to connect it through the Bluetooth settings on the iPhone first, and then pair it through VoiceOver after doing this. If you find my review of the VarioUltra, I cover this. I have not noticed any kind of behavior like that on even the Perkins Mini, though it's been awhile since I've used it. So maybe a bug has crept in to that specific braille driver, or it could be your braille display only. Either way, this shouldn't happen on the VU at all. Enjoy your new toy, when you get it.

Submitted by MelodicFate on Wednesday, May 18, 2016

In reply to by Scott Davert

Hi Scott, thanks for your thoughts on this. I did know about the way pairing was done on the VU, it's a bit different for sure. I'm not sure if it's my specific display or just the Perkins Mini's drivers, especially as it's not one of the popular displays and there aren't many people to ask. But I'm very, very relieved to hear two people now say they don't have these problems on the VU. It makes it even more appealing, honestly. :)

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