The 4.7 and 5.5 model iPhones have larger screens and sometimes two-handed use is a necessity. So, Apple added Reachability to the iPhone's Accessibility features so that larger iPhones can be used with one hand. Here's how to enable and use it.
Audio messages, introduced in iOS 8, allow you to send short voice clips via iMessage. They're incredibly easy to use and receive which should make them a popular option when folks are unable to text. However, they can take up far more storage space than regular text-based messages. That's why you're able to edit automatic expiration settings for audio messages to suit your needs.
Grayscale mode is a new accessibility feature available in iOS 8 that allows folks with a visual impairment, such as color blindness, disable colors that make the display even harder for them to see. Since some colors are harder to pick out than others for people that are color blind, grayscale mode may make reading menus and viewing images more detailed.
Inverting screen colors is an Accessibility feature that makes the iPhone and iPad easier on the eyes for some people with a sensitivity to brightness, easier to distinguish for some people with color blindness, and easier to make out for some people with low vision. It can even be used in combination with zoom to greatly increase legibility for anyone with a visual impairment.
Note: Some people invert screen colors as a pseudo-dark theme or nighttime reading mode for when they want to greatly reduce light and glare from the display.
Switch control is an Accessibility feature designed to make the iPhone and iPad easier to use for anyone with a physical and/or motor skills impairment. With Switch control you can scan between items, use crosshairs to pick specific points, or manually select items using multiple switches, and then use an external adaptive switch, your iPhone or iPad screen itself, or even the front FaceTime camera to trigger the switch. Both hardware buttons and software interface elements can be selected and triggered with switches and a variety of options let you set them up just exactly the way you want or need them.
AssistiveTouch is an Accessibility feature that makes the iPhone and iPad easier to use for anyone with motor control, coordination, or other forms of physical impairment. With AssistiveTouch a special on-screen menu lets you easily tap or perform other gestures instead of potentially more difficult or complex manipulations like pressing the hardware Home button, pressing multiple buttons at the same time, or performing other gestures that are uncomfortable or impossible. The iPhone and iPad can even interface with third-party assistive devices to make sure that, even if they're wheelchair mounted, they remain as accessible and functional as possible for as many people as possible.
Mono audio is an Accessibility feature that makes sure, even if you're hard of hearing or deaf in one ear, you never miss a word, note, or sound when listening to your iPhone or iPad with a headset on. Typical stereo audio includes distinct left and right channels, so different ears get different sounds. Mono audio makes sure both ears get all the sound. You can also adjust the volume independently for either ear, so you everything from audio books to podcasts to songs to videos come in loud and clear.
Note: You can also use mono audio if a podcast or other audio file you're listening to has mistakenly put one panelist in the wrong channel, all panelists in only one channel, or not properly balanced the volume between channels.
Subtitles and closed captioning are Accessibility features that let anyone with a hearing impairment still enjoy any movie, TV show, podcast, and iTunes U video labeled with a CC in the iTunes Store. Subtitles and closed captioning work by layering text over the video, basically showing everything that's being said in written form. Subtitles and closed captioning on the iPhone and iPad even let you create your own display styles so you can make them as easy to see and enjoyable to read as possible.
Speak auto-text is an Accessibility feature that makes the iPhone and iPad's automatic correction tool easier to use for anyone blind or with low vision. With speak auto-text enabled, any auto-corections, including auto-capitalizations will be read to you before they're implemented. That way, if iOS has made a mistake, or you meant to spell the word the way you did, you can revert any correction or capitalization before hitting return, send, tweet, or otherwise finishing up what you're writing.
Speak selection is an Accessibility feature that reads aloud any text you've highlighted on your iPhone or iPad. It's ideal anyone who has difficulty making out text because of small size or style, have dyslexia, is just learning a written language, or for any reason just want the words spoken to improve understanding. Speak selection can even highlight words as they're read to aid in comprehension, and adjust dialect and speed so you or a family member can better follow along.
Zoom is an Accessibility feature that makes everything from text to icons to interface elements bigger and easier to see on the iPhone and iPad. Zoom magnification defaults to 200% but can be set from 100%-500% to help anyone with low vision of any level. When in zoomed mode, all the standard navigation and selection gestures — tap, swipe, and pinch — work just like normal. Zoom can even work alongside VoiceOver to provide even greater assistance for those with visual impairments.
Note: Designers use zoom as well to help check pixel-level details on-screen.
The Calendar app for iPhone and iPad provides a great way to keep track of all your appointments and events. While it's faster to use Siri to create basic events, if you need more precise control, or if you want to edit existing event details, you can also do it the old fashioned way -- by tapping your way through options inside the Calendar app itself.
If you need to quickly change the time of an event or appointment in your iPhone or iPad's Calendar, the today view gives you an incredibly easy way of doing so by dragging and dropping instead of entering into edit mode for each event you need to change. Unfortunately, the Calendar app doesn't make the option very obvious. But once you know where it's at, we're pretty sure you'll prefer it over editing individual events when it comes time to plan your day.