Comparing iPhone Voiceover and Samsung Galaxy Voice Assistant

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Dear all friends in the community!
Within the last recent years, the accessibility for visually-impaired people has rapidly advanced, two of which are Apple Voiceover and Galaxy Voice Assistant, the modified version of Google Talkback. From what I hear, the Galaxy voice assistant, unlike the google talkback, contains similar gestures to those of an IPhone Voice over. Up to this point, it makes me feel oscillated between the two platform. For this given reasons, could anyone tell me whether the Galaxy Voice Assistant is fully equivalent to Voice over in term of productivity? One more thing, can anyone tell me how long the lifespan of the Samsung Galaxy Flagship? Let say Galaxy S lines.
Finally, I kindly plead for understanding and apology in case of unintentional mistake.
Sincerely, Vireak.



Submitted by Nikola Jovic on Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Hi. Since I have used Samsung devices for several years now, I will try to help you in the best way possible, however if you have any questions you can feel free to ask. In comparison to iOS, of course, voice assistant is not the same. If you expect them to work in the same way, then you will in fact be disappointed. For example, iOS uses custom actions much more then Android. Where as in an app you might have a list of items with buttons on the right side to delete or edit an item, in iOS those are 90 percent of the times custom actions for voiceover while in Android that's not the case. Android uses custom actions for home screen editting, and some apps made by Google. One app that also uses them is Telegram, but since they are a recent feature of Android not many apps implement them. Another disadvantage is the integrated braille screen input. While on iOS, braille screen input is part of the system, if you want to use it on Android you will have to install 3rd party apps. Additionally, to use it, you must suspend (temporarily turn off) your screen reader when typing, which is not so hard since Samsung, just like Apple offers the triple click home capability. Both operating systems however are very accessible, it just depends on your needs. If you have any specific questions about voice assistant, you can ask and it will be much easier to help. Some basic gestures of voice assistant are indeed same as with voiceover, for example swipe left and right to move around the screen, up and down to adjust the selected option. 2 finger double tap starts and stops the current action, while 2 finger single tap stops and resumes speech. Some differences are that 3 finger single tap reads from the top, while a double tap with 3 fingers reads from the currently focused item. There is also dark screen capability which can be toggled by double pressing the power button.

Submitted by Vireak on Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Thank you for your helpful response. I see the limitation of custom action of voice assistant. I still feel skeptical about the tech editing with voice assistant, that is, whether the samsung voice assistant is feature-reached as Voiceover in tech editing area like cut, copy, share and lookup. Another important question is whether samsung voice assistant improve along with OS update as the IOS does with its voiceover? What about third party support? Oh, how long does Samsung support its device? Thank you.

Submitted by Nikola Jovic on Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Hello. About text editing, voice assistant uses something called text selection mode. Once you are in an edit field, double tap and hold with 2 fingers and selection mode is on. In this mode, swiping up and down will select previous or next character. 2 finger swipe down selects all the text, swipe up will paste, right is cut and left copy I believe but I could be inverting those slightly. For 3rd party app support, pretty much the same as Google TalkBack since they do use the same API. Most apps you would daily use are accessible and work fine. For Samsung's software support, I believe they support a flagship for 3 years after it is released.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Wednesday, July 24, 2019

When iOS releases a new iOS system, voiceover works well with it. I heard that with samsung is not the same. For example with the new iOS 13 voiceover will be updated and make sure it work well. Perhaps someone did a video in youtube?

Submitted by Maranatà on Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Hello! I too would be interested in getting to know the Galaxy screenreader, in fact my wife has a Galaxy s9. I'd like to activate it and start exploring it so I can compare it to iphone. How can I activate it? Is there a way to activate and deactivate it without the help of a sighted person? Thank you! I also heard that there are more accessible games on the Galaxy store. It's true?

Submitted by Nikola Jovic on Thursday, July 25, 2019

Hi. For updates, the screen reader often updates with the operating system just like voiceover. However, if it does not update that does not mean it wont work well with the new version. As for the activation, unfortunately the only time you can independently activate the screen reader is when you are setting the device up for the first time or doing a factory reset. You can ask any person though to go to settings, then accessibility, and depending on the Android version running you will either see voice assistand in the vision settings or just Samsung screen reader. In any case, when you do turn it on for the first time it will give you a tutorial. I recommend going through that since it will teach you the basic gestures you need.

Submitted by Trenton Matthews on Thursday, July 25, 2019

If you have a Samsung device without a home button, you turn on Voice Assistant via the key combination of ‘Volume-Up+Power.” For Galaxy phones with a home button, simply do the famous ‘triple-click-Home.”

You can also find gestures for Voice Assistant over at
, since not all of the gestures are listed among the given tutorial.

Submitted by Vireak on Sunday, August 18, 2019

Dear Everyone!
Sorry for asking the question on this Site. I am interesting in purchasing a new Samsung although I still keep the IPhone. Could anyone advise me whether I should choose Samsung Galaxy Note line Or S line? Which one is more accessible for visually-impaired people? Thank you

Submitted by Trenton Matthews on Sunday, August 18, 2019

The question ain't if which one is accessible or not (as they both are), the question in this case... "
Are the "S-Pen" and said "extra" features of the Note worth it to you?"

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Monday, August 19, 2019

I did several youtube search using the title of this but nothing good came out. It looks complicated to use and set up. Perhaps you will have a better luck doing the search that I did.