In this podcast, Thomas Domville introduces us to Dolphin EasyReader, a FREE accessible reading app for readers with dyslexia, low vision or blindness. Browse & download from the World's largest collection of talking book and newspaper libraries. Or copy text from anywhere on your phone & hear EasyReader read it back to you. Experience perfectly synchronized text & audio. Or for text only titles, EasyReader can add a human sounding voice of your choice. Boost comfort or contrast - choose colours, text size and highlights to suit your visual needs.
Dolphin EasyReader on the App Store
Thank you for this very informative and nicely done podcast, Thomas. I'm using the app and enjoying it. I will share this information with others.
After listening to the podcast, I'm also starting to use the app. I like the Gutenberg project very much. But I found two things which I feel "maybe need another app" kind of feeling:
1. I don't see any place where I can get books from one device to another. I mean, I have a collection of offline PDFs, and I hoped that this app would also be capable of taking care of these. But, I believe it's not able to do that?
2. Not all voices are working with the device. Mainly, the Siri voices. Also, the sliders can't be finetuned. So, I can't make Ava speak at 54%, but I can only make her speak either at 50% which is too slow for me, or 60% which is too fast.
But despite these, this is a great app! And I can pull books off Gutenberg, which I like very much.
Gary, I am glad to hear that you like the podcast and you are now using the Easy Reader! Yes, spread the word about the app to others. It may not offer all the features like other similar apps but does a pretty decent job for being free but I'm glad you like it.
Thanks for reaching out and of the kind words!
Firstly, thanks for listening to the podcast and glad you are liking the Dolphin Easy Reader.
Secondly, below is a response that Hazel (Dolphin Easy Reader Team) has left for another user that had a similair question that you have mentioned to me above. Here is what they said.
"Hi, Affirm - thanks for the positive feedback. As you say, now the voice rate slider (in the voice settings) only goes up/down in increments of 10%. It was designed like this for more efficient speed changes, but I can log a suggestion to decrease this. Your other suggestion about loading content from Dropbox and other cloud storage locations is already on the development schedule - we totally agree - this would be a great addition and would instantly broaden the audience. Thanks again for the feedback. Hazel"
That should answer two of the questions you had asked. No, currently we are not able to grab books from other Cloud Services at this time. We only have the options that they have presented to us. Those are the number of services that we can download the books. The other is that at this time we can't increment the voice rate other than 10% at a time but it sounds like they will be making those adjustments for us in future releases.
Lastly, you ask if one could use the Siri voices? No, you can't use the built-in Siri voices. I'm not sure why but I'm sure there is a good reason why it can't be used. My recommendation is to hop over to the Dolphin Easy Reader App Entry page found at:
On that page you can either leave a Comment of the question that you asked me. Hopefully, Hazel will reply with an answer of why the Siri voices can't be used. The other options are to contact Hazel herself. Just find one of the Comment left by Hazel and click on her name. From there you can use the Contact to send her a private email.
I don't know if it is just me but I noticed a significant battery drain when using this app. It used quite a bit more than voice dream reader does. Does anyone els notice this?
Thanks for answering the questions. I don't have other cloud services, but all my offline collections is on my PC. I was saying that I found that I couldn't use iTunes' file sharing option to pull files into the Easy Reader. I personally think this one is better than Capty (that app always crashes on my iPhone SE). Anyways, it would be great to see how the app will continue. As for the Siri voice, yeah, I'll follow your suggestions to contact with Hazel directly. Thanks for helping!
Hi folks, I am having some ifficulty navigating between saved bookmarks within a bookshare title I have downloaded to the app. Perhaps I missed this portion of the podcast. Any thoughts helpful.
Hi David - thanks for the feedback on EasyReader.
1. We're just in the very final stages of testing an update to EasyReader that will allow you to load and read DAISY, text and epub books that are stored on your iphone/ipad or on the cloud etc. This update should be out in the next week of so.
2. I've passed the feedback about fine tuning the sliders over to the developers for their consideration - as mentioned earlier in this thread, there seems to be some appetite for greater granularity.
Keep the feedback coming. Many thanks. Hazel
Hi - Good news, I have given the feedback to our app developers about the voice sliders being too limited. They have made some tweaks to the next update (1.5) and you should then be able to adjust the voice speed by 5% intervals. The new update is due out in the next couple of weeks - let me know if you think this is an improvement.
Thanks Hazel for the message. Yeah, I'm sure I would greatly enjoy this update when it comes out. And I'd love to use it as my document reader of choice on the phone. If one day we can use the Siri voices, it would be a breakthrough! Great job! :)
EasyReader does use the Siri voices that are built into iOS. Therefore make sure that your iPad's system voices are working. If they don't work on your system, then they won't work in EasyReader either. So go to your iPad’s Settings ->Accessibility ->Speech ->Voices, see which of your system voices currently has a check mark next to it, select that voice, and then press its “Play” button icon in order to hear a sample of that voice. If that works, then give your selected voice a slightly bigger test by going to your iPad’s Settings ->Accessibility ->Speech ->Typing Feedback, and enable the Characters option. Then go to any text box on your iPad, like the Search box, and type some letters. If you can hear the letters you type then that voice should also work with the EasyReader app. Let us know if your system voices work, but EasyReader is still not speaking. If your system voices are not working then you will need to contact Apple support. Let me know how you get on. Hazel
Thanks for this great walkthrough. I just read an item about this app in today's issue of "Top Tech Tidbits," but the link provided by them was broken. So I went directly to Dolphin's website and found their page for the app. I have not yet downloaded it, but it sounds like another must-have app. And you cannot beat the price. So many great apps and so little time, lol! Also for the commercial ones, not enough money. At least I don't think so anyway, lol.