What are the best accessibility features on the Kindle?

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The Kindle Paperwhite is one of the best e-readers in the world. It has a brilliant E Ink display with excellent contrast, the backlight helps evenly illuminate the screen while the performance is also fast enough to not feel stuck at all times. Then it is quite affordable too.

However, few people might know that the e-reader also comes with some cool accessibility features which, as PCMag said, make it ideal for people with different forms of disabilities. Read on to find out about these.

VoiceView for screen readers

The VoiceView feature is only available for the Kindle Paperwhite and is aimed at those who use screen readers. This way the feature can be paired with a screen reader to read aloud whatever is displayed. You will need to invoke pairing mode on the Kindle to pair it with an assistive device.

  1. To do this, hold down the power button for nine seconds.
  2. Next, hold two fingers apart on the screen for a second.
  3. Once paired with a Bluetooth device, a read-aloud message will appear saying “Hold two fingers down on the screen to use this audio device with the VoiceView screen reader on Kindle”.

Amazon also offers over 12 million books that support screen reader technology, which means enough content to keep you engaged.

Word Wise for definitions

This is a great feature for those who are not fluent in English language but want to read English books. It could also be great for kids who are just starting to learn the English language. The way it works is this – every difficult word you come across comes with a simple definition displayed at the top. Tapping on the word will open another menu showing more definitions.

The point to note here is that Word Wise only supports English language at the moment.

  1. To activate Word Wise, tap at the top of the page to bring up the drop-down menu.
  2. Select the Aa icon
  3. In the option that appears, select the More option.
  4. Under More, select Word Wise
  5. You have different options here that you can select depending on the level of support you need.

X-ray

The x-ray feature provides users with a kind of character map in the book so you can get a glimpse of where in the book that particular character appears. The above also applies to images, phrases, etc. This way, readers can also get a glimpse of the plot of the story.

Activating C-Ray is simple.

  1. Just open a book and tap the three dots in the upper right corner.
  2. In the drop-down menu that appears, tap X-Ray.
  3. Support is available for notable clips, people, terms, and images.

Open Dyslexic Font

The OpenDyslexic font was specially designed for those who suffer from dyslexia. For those who may not know, dyslexia is a form of learning disability where people have trouble understanding letters, numbers, and symbols. Fortunately, there are several tools available to help people with dyslexic disorders. The OpenDyslexic font is one of them.

To enable the OpenDyslexic font on a Kindle:

  1. Open any book and press the top to launch the drop-down menu.
  2. In the menu, press Aa.
  3. From the menu options that appear, select Font Family > Font Family.
  4. Select the OpenDyslexic font from several displayed.

Increase font size

Some might simply suffer from limited eyesight. E-Reader devices can be perfect for them as one can change the font size according to their needs. Besides increasing the font size, one can also increase or decrease the word spacing or adjust the margins. Other than that, one can easily change the orientation of the display – portrait or landscape – to configure what suits them best.

  1. All font and layout options can be accessed by tapping the Aa icon.

Invoke dark mode

A Kindle’s E Ink screen is already known to be the most user-friendly screen you can have on an electronic device. They cause the least tension and provide the same feel as real paper. However, research has found that reading bright words against a dark background may be easier on your eyes and is especially true for those with sensory processing differences.

To invoke dark mode:

  1. Tap the three dots in the upper right corner and select Settings from the menu that appears.
  2. On the Settings page, select Accessibility.
  3. On the Accessibility page, toggle the button against Invert Black and White to invoke Dark Mode and Light Mode.

The point to note here is that dark mode is only available in the following Kindle versions – Kindle Paperwhite 11th Gen Kindle Paperwhite 10th Gen Kindle Oasis 10th Gen (2019).

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