VoiceOver Accessible Word Processor for iPad

Accessibility Advocacy

I am looking for a word processing app for the iPad that allows the student to use VoiceOver to navigate the document line by line, or paragraph by paragraph using either a keyboard or refreshabraille. For example, I email him a test and he cannot move through it question at a time and then mark his answer. He can only “read all” and not word by word or line by line. Even as a google doc, or pages document, he cannot use VO keys and arrows to navigate the document. We've even tried using the refreshabraille to navigate with the same results. I’ve tried as many word processors as I have come across and am not having any luck. Even iA writer which is “VO Accessible” will not read line by line or word by word. I get letter by letter (VO down arrow) or the whole document.

Please help! 



Submitted by Usman on Wednesday, November 19, 2014

You can try access note. Its been discontinued but it might still work under IOS 8.

Submitted by Bryan Jones on Thursday, November 20, 2014


Have you tried the current versions of Microsoft Word for iPad or Apple Pages for iPad? While I would not recommend either of these as serious word processing tools for VO Users, it is possible to perform the tasks you listed: Open an existing document, navigate by line, character or word, and insert text using a bluetooth keyboard.

Submitted by Berty on Thursday, November 20, 2014

My iPad 2 is running the latest IOS8.1.1 with the Apple bluetooth keyboard with Pages opened and I did not have any issues with navigation.

Make sure the QuickNav is turned off by pressing arrow left and right at the same time to toggle.

Hold VO keys and press arrow left or right to move between elements on Pages. When it lands on canvas, press VO plus spacebar to toggle insertion pointer start or end of document.

Use the arrow up or down to read line by line, Option Key with arrow left or right to move word by word.

Hope it helps.

Submitted by Steve Holmes on Friday, November 21, 2014

I have used the refreshabraille with latest version of MS Word for iOS and it worked pretty well. Navigation is a bit tricky to find the main edit area but once inside the edit area, just be sure to set navigation rotor to line so you can then use refreshabraille's joy stick to move up and down in the document line by line. You can use cursor routing keys on the display to pinpoint a place to continue typing or whatever. One thing to note here and this seems to apply to all edit fields in IOS and that is when moving up and down by line, the cursor will be placed at the end of each line as you go down and be positioned at the beginning of each line as you move up. It sounds confusing but if you follow this a bit and especially look at the Braille display when doing this you will eventually git it down to a science. At least this way if Word format is required by others with whoom your student might deal with, at least the document would be compatible for that purpose.