This is Shalin Shah — the creator of Voice. For those of you who don't know me, I’m a senior studying computer science at the University of California, Berkeley. Voice has been a project of mine since I was in high school, and I’ve been working hard to make it better over the last 6 years.
Voice was hand-crafted for people like you. It can help you quickly read items like product labels and magazine pages in your day-to-day. But you can also use it for more advanced reading like mail or books. Here's the link to the app: [https://apps.apple.com/us/app/voice-ocr-document-reader/id903772588](https://apps.apple.com/us/app/voice-ocr-document-reader/id903772588).
My goal with Voice was to create the most simple and intuitive interface to help you read things. I’ve built some new features in this version that I'm really excited to share with you today.
- Voice’s OCR engine is perhaps one of the best in the world. You don't need to worry about low lighting and bad focus, Voice corrects it automatically and gives you pixel-perfect accuracy every time. Voice can even read scribbles and handwritten text with incredible accuracy.
- The simplest way to use Voice is by simply tapping the button labeled “Camera. Button.” This will take a picture. Then tap the button labeled “Next. Button.” and Voice will perform OCR on your image and read it aloud.
- You can also control the app using your voice if you find that tapping buttons shakes your camera. Simply say “capture” to snap a picture, and “read” to start processing the image.
- Batch mode is enabled by default. To read more than one page, just keep taking photos using the “Camera. Button.” or by saying the word “capture” many times. Voice will read all the documents one after another.
- Good OCR detection does not depend on the corners of a document to be visible. But if corner detection is important to you, Scan Tone plays a tone when it sees all 4 corners visible. A louder scan tone means better visibility of your document.
- Voice also supports real-time scanning. Toggle this on, then simply hold your phone in front of any document with text and Voice will read it out loud in real-time. Voice also automatically turns on flash when it detects sub-par lighting and turns it off for objects that would glare.
- Voice supports 47 languages and offers 180 reading voices. 52 voices are the standard iOS voices, and 128 of them are premium AI-generated voices with extremely fluent intonations.
- Photo library picker lets you pick multiple images at a time from any of your albums with full VoiceOver capabilities.
- Voice now completely works without wifi. If privacy is a concern, you can use Voice in offline mode.
- Once your document has been scanned, it takes one tap to copy your detected text to clipboard, export it as an accessible PDF, or export it as a Text file.
- If you have “save photos to camera roll“ toggled on in Settings, then all the photos you snap will be added under the "Voice OCR" album in your phone’s photo library.
- Voice allows you to import both images and PDFs from other apps. It automatically detects the document format and performs OCR.
- The entire app was crafted with VoiceOver in mind, so everything is fully accessible.
- Voice is only 6.9-megabytes, which is 34 times smaller than Seeing AI, and 11 times smaller than Voice Dream Scanner.
- I have made some changes to the pricing model. Previously, the app cost $4.99 on the App Store and there was an additional subscription that cost $4.99 per month and unlocked access to premium reading voices. Now, the app is free on the app store and the pricing model is a subscription. Basically, you get 20 free scans per month. Once those 20 scans are up, you can purchase the Elite plan for $9.99 per month or the Believer plan for $99.99 per year. You save $20 a year, or 17%, by upgrading to the Believer plan.
- Feel free to reach out to [firstname.lastname@example.org](mailto:email@example.com) for any questions, feedback, or concerns. You can also text me at any time on my personal phone number: +1 949-939-6619. Critical feedback and ideas are super welcome, so please reach out!
Here is what's on my To-do list for the next version of Voice:
- The ability to scan a barcode and have Voice read out the product information.
- The ability to do object detection for all objects.
- The ability to play and pause with gestures when Voice is reading a document.
- Gamify the experience, so using the app feels more delightful to use.
- Reduce the app size even more so people get a faster app download time and it takes up less storage.