Best apps for people with disabilities

So many terrific apps, so little time! To help you navigate, here is our pick of the best apps for accessibility that help you communicate, learn new skills and live your best life.

For the millions of Australians with a disability, apps designed specifically for improving accessibility have been a real game changer.

To help you make the most of your smart phone or tablet, we’ve hand-picked some of the most impressive apps that can assist you with anything from communication, to learning new skills, to making daily routines simpler.

Download button at the ready!

Apps for vision loss

Be My Eyes (Free)

Be My Eyes does exactly what it says – and it’s brilliant. The app connects people with vision loss who need assistance with sighted volunteers via a video connection.

Say for example you wanted to find your way around a suburb you’ve never been to before – simply connect to a volunteer via live video call in the app, and they’ll direct you to that café with the amazing croissants in no time.

App Store | Google Play

Seeing AI (Free)

Seeing AI is a free app that narrates the world around you. It uses AI and your phone’s camera to give you a description of things you’ve snapped, such as what’s written on the street sign, how much money you’re holding in your hand, or what colour the building is in front of you. Cool, huh?

App Store

Voice Dream Reader ($22.99)

Voice Dream Reader is a most excellent accessible reading tool. It features advanced text-to-speech functionality and a screen layout that can be customised to suit any audio or visual reading style. There are also 36 voices to choose from, and an impressive 27 languages.

App Store | Google Play

Apps for hearing loss

Rogervoice Caption Calls (Free)

This nifty app helps those with hearing loss by captioning their phone chats in real time. As a person talks, text will appear on the screen to read along. If you also have difficulty speaking, this app also allows you to write your response as text, and the app will then read it out to your friend.

App Store | Google Play

RIDBC Auslan Tutor: Key Signs (Free)

This free app allows you to learn 150 common Auslan signs using such as ‘please’, ‘thanks’, and ‘how are you?’, as well as the Auslan Alphabet. To learn each sign, you’ll follow a step-by-step process that includes pictures and videos. Once you’ve mastered the basics, the paid version includes over 500 signs.

App Store | Google Play

National Relay Service (NRS) App (Free)

The NRS app helps people with hearing loss make phone calls. It features various call options, such as the ability to text and read speech, speaking to your friend but reading their responses on your screen, and signing your conversation over Skype to be translated by a Relay Officer.

App Store | Google Play

Apps for learning

Sheechify Text Reader (Free)

Speechify is a terrific app that turns anything you want to read into an audiobook to help you focus and retain more info. The developers say the app was designed to help people disabilities such as dyslexia, ADHD, and low vision and “now helps hundreds of thousands of people to consume their reading content with ease”.

App Store | Google Play

Khan Academy Kids (Free)

This free app uses fun games and adorable visuals to help your child develop their skills in reading, writing, and maths. Though it wasn’t designed for children with a disability in mind, the app is more visually engaging than many other learning apps, which can help keep your child’s attention and aid their learning.

App Store | Google Play

Todo Maths (Free)

This award-winning app can help your child improve their maths skills through fun and visually engaging games. It contains over 2000 fun activities to help them learn counting, addition, subtraction, multiplication and much more. Todo Maths also features an OpenDyslexic font option, simplified keypad, and eight language options.

App Store | Google Play

Apps for communication

Proloquo2Go ($399.99)

This highly popular app helps thousands of people who have difficulty speaking (and there are over 100 voices to choose from, depending on your mood!). The app allows you to construct and speak sentences by tapping on symbols or by typing words. It’s a little pricey but definitely worth the investment.

App Store

Predictable ($159.99)

Predictable is another terrific text-to-speech app that learns from your patterns of use, predicting what you will type next and speedily converting it to speech. The app has some impressive functions such as allowing to generate your own personalised voice, using face gestures to make a selection, and – our favourite – a bank of customisable emojis to choose from!

App Store | Google Play

Speech Tutor ($19.99)

Speech Tutor is a speech therapy app that takes you on a journey inside the mouth to learn exactly how sounds are made. You can choose from over 130 animations of word pronunciation from either “front view” or “side view” and at three different speed levels. Open wide!

App Store

* App prices were correct as of August 2020 and does not include in-app purchases.

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