The ClaroSpeak text-to-speech App now brings the 'Capture Text From Photo' option and Google Drive to all ClaroSpeak users.
ClaroSpeak is the first assistive technology app from Claro Software, available on iOS for iPad or iPhone. ClaroSpeak is a high-quality text-to-speech reader capable of speaking any accessible text with a range of human-sounding high-quality voices. ClaroSpeak offers the option of visual highlighting in-sync with the spoken words, a great range of colour and font settings to allow for optimum reading and word prediction to help with writing. ClaroSpeak is a quality app for proofreading text through listening, helping with reading and literacy development and creating audio files from any text.
Import documents and PDFs into ClaroSpeak from apps such as Mail, or import PDF, Word, Pages and other files directly from Dropbox using ClaroSpeak's Dropbox integration. Hear the contents read out with a choice of four high-quality Nuance Vocalizer voices included in ClaroSpeak. Make the voice speak faster or slower to suit. The voices are installed within ClaroSpeak, so they work when not online and do not use up any expensive data allowance.
Type text or use Apple's speech recognition to dictate text directly into ClaroSpeak and hear it spoken back, helping you to check text and proofread quickly and easily. The Apple spellcheck works in ClaroSpeak, further helping to increase the accuracy of documents.
Access up to 55 voices in 27 languages and even more accents through In-App Purchase in ClaroSpeak.
ClaroSpeak's Word Prediction takes account of word frequency and previous words. There is an initial Word Prediction list loaded on startup, and ClaroSpeak can learn new words as they are typed. The predicted words appear on a Word bar above the keyboard. Swiping left on this row will show more predicted words, if available. Train prediction dictionary or create a new one from a current document. It is possible to switch Word Prediction on or off, as well as choose the prediction dictionary to use and set whether prediction learns from what is typed.
Learn and vocalise a second language with ClaroSpeak. Use a French or a Spanish voice to hear text in a foreign language spoken aloud and listen back to text as it is typed - great for learning how to pronounce correctly. Buy more voices via In-App Purchase.
Choose a photo, screen shot or an image with text and have this text extracted into ClaroSpeak.
Coordinate reading and listening via text highlighting as the text is read back. Pick the colour and style of highlighting required.
Choose from one of four highlighting modes: None, Word by Word highlighting, Word Trail highlighting or Sentence highlighting. The Word Trail feature makes words colour progressively as they are spoken by ClaroSpeak.
Change the font size, foreground and background colour, and use a more-readable font to maximise ease-of-reading.
Convert any text into an audio file with any of the high-quality voices. Listen to text on the move and proofread on the go.
ClaroSpeak will continue to read or play an audio file after the Home button is pressed. This allows continued listening to a document whilst using other apps.
Text created within ClaroSpeak can be emailed, sent via SMS, or copied and pasted into another app, like Safari - great to help ensure everything is right. The Apple spellcheck works in ClaroSpeak too, further helping accuracy. Sending to Facebook and Twitter lets you join in with social media (available on devices running iOS 6.0+).
Open documents and eBooks stored in Dropbox or Google Drive directly in ClaroSpeak. Save text and audio files directly back to Dropbox or Google Drive.
For all technical support
tel: +44 (0) 1772 978096
- Pinch over the text area to increase/decrease font size
- Tap the top toolbar while playing = Stop
- Shake device = Clear text
In normal view mode:
- Swipe from left to right = Play
In paged view mode:
- Swipe from left to right over the page toolbar = Play
- Swipe from left to right = previous page
- Swipe from right to left = next page
- Swipe from right to left with two fingers (if you have a PDF file open) = show original PDF file
- Swipe from left to right with two fingers (if you have a PDF file open) = hide original PDF file
Different versions of ClaroSpeak contain different high-quality voices, it depends on the version you buy from the App Store. You can see the included voices in the product listing in the App Store before you buy. Additional voices are available to purchase from the in-app store. If you need to read texts in different languages, you will need the corresponding voices in order for the text to be read out correctly (for example, you need a Greek voice to read Greek text.)
Some text will sometimes cause the highlighting to get confused – for example, foreign characters or mathematical symbols. Stopping and starting speech will fix things, or switching from word highlighting to sentence highlighting.
File Sharing lets you transfer files between the iPad or iPhone and your computer, via a USB cable (or wirelessly if setup) using iTunes. You can share files created with ClaroSpeak and saved in the supported format (.txt for Text and .wav for audio). Apps that support file sharing appear in the File Sharing Apps list in iTunes. For each app, the Files list shows the documents that are on the iPad or iPhone.
Transfer a file from an iPad or iPhone to your computer:
In iTunes, go to your device’s Apps pane. In the File Sharing section, select ClaroSpeak from the list. On the right, select the file you want to transfer, then click 'Save to'. You can also 'drag and drop' the files.
Transfer a file from your computer to an iPad or iPhone:
In iTunes, go to your device’s Apps pane. In the File Sharing section, select ClaroSpeak, then click 'Add'. The file is immediately transferred to your device for use with the app you selected.
Delete a file from ClaroSpeak on the iPad or iPhone with iTunes:
In iTunes, go to your device’s Apps pane. Select ClaroSpeak, then select the file in the Files list in the File Sharing section of the Apps pane, then tap the 'Delete' key.
All the settings for ClaroSpeak are accessed by tapping on the Information icon and selecting 'Settings'.
You must be online to open email attachments in ClaroSpeak.
The attachment will be displayed in the email. Tap and hold on the file, a pop up window will appear, select 'Open In..' this will open another pop up window here you can select to open in ClaroSpeak.
ClaroSpeak can only use accessible text, so text from a locked PDF document or text within an image can not be imported by ClaroSpeak.
You will need to access the Settings from the home screen on your iPad or iPhone. Once in Settings select 'General' from the left. Once in General scroll down and select 'Keyboard', in the Keyboard settings select 'International Keyboards'. Select 'Add New Keyboard' to choose the keyboard you wish to use.
Return to the iPad or iPhone home page and select ClaroSpeak tap in the work area, the keyboard will pop up to change the keyboard tap the 'Globe' icon to select your chosen keyboard.
If ClaroSpeak has stopped speaking you will need to close and restart the app. To close the app, return to the Home screen and then click the Home button twice. Tap and hold on the app icon. When the app starts to jiggle tap on the Close button to close it. Once done, click the Home button twice and re-open the app.
Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad.
Requires iOS 5.0 or later.
Supports Pages 4 and earlier
ClaroSpeak US can certainly be considered among the best available text-to-speech apps. There's not a lot of overt instruction, tutorials, or visual cues, but that's likely because the developer wanted to create a clean, sparse user interface to make it visually easy to work with. For tutorials, users have to go to the "i" tab and from there, exit to the developer's website for the user guide. For users who want a lot of customizable options, including highlighting, frequent playback of content, and Dropbox compatibility, ClaroSpeak US is an excellent option.
This review of ClaroSpeak US was written by Dana Villamagna