Accessibility shortcuts, large text, VoiceOver, zoom function, display accommodations, magnifier, audio descriptions.

iPads have many accessibility features to support your vision.

Using accessibility shortcuts

You can quickly turn on or off many accessibility features using the Home button 

Using the Home button

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Accessibility Shortcut, then select the features you use the most.

Use Accessibility Shortcut

Triple-click the Home button.

Large, bold, and high-contrast text

Display larger text in apps such as: 

  • Settings
  • Calendar
  • Contacts
  • Mail
  • Messages
  • Notes

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Larger Text, then turn on Larger Accessibility Sizes. Or, use accessibility shortcuts.

Display bolder text on iPad 

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility, then turn on Bold Text.

Increase text contrast where possible

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Increase Contrast. You can choose to reduce transparency and darken colors.


VoiceOver is a gesture-based screen reader that lets you use an iPad even if you don't see the screen. Add VoiceOver to Accessibility Shortcuts to enable it wherever you're in iOS.

VoiceOver tells you about each item you select. The VoiceOver cursor (a black outline) encloses the item and VoiceOver speaks its name or describes it.

When you touch the screen or drag your finger over it, VoiceOver speaks the item your finger is on, including icons and text. To interact with an item, such as a button or link, or to navigate to another item, use VoiceOver gestures.

When you go to a new screen, VoiceOver plays a sound, then selects and speaks the first item on the screen (typically in the upper-left corner). 

Zooming in and out

Many apps let you zoom in or out on specific items. For example, you can double-tap or pinch to: 

  • look closer in Photos
  • expand webpage columns in Safari

There's also a general zoom feature that lets you magnify the screen no matter what you're doing. You can: 

  • zoom the entire screen (Full Screen Zoom) 
  • zoom part of the screen in a resizable window and leave the rest of the screen unmagnified (Window Zoom)

You can use Zoom together with VoiceOver.

Turn zoom on or off

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility, then turn zoom on or off.

Zoom in or out

With zoom turned on, double-tap the screen with three fingers.

Adjust the magnification

Double-tap with three fingers, then drag up or down. This gesture is similar to a double-tap, except you don't lift your fingers after the second tap—instead, drag your fingers on the screen. 

You can also triple-tap with three fingers, then drag the zoom Level slider in the zoom controls that appear. 

Zoom in on your typing without magnifying the keyboard

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Zoom, then turn on Follow Focus.

When you zoom in while typing (in Messages or Notes, for example), the area immediately around the text you type is magnified while all of the keyboard remains visible. 

Turn on Smart Typing, and the entire window (except the keyboard) is magnified.

Display the magnified part of the screen in grayscale or inverted color

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Zoom > Zoom Filter, then choose an option. 

Or triple-tap with three fingers, then tap Choose Filter in the zoom controls that appear.

Display accommodations

If you have colour blindness or other vision challenges, you can customize the display settings to make the screen easier to see.

Automatically adjust the screen brightness

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Display Accommodations, then turn on Auto-Brightness. iPad adjusts the screen brightness for current light conditions using the built-in ambient light sensor.

Invert the screen colors

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Display Accommodations > Invert Colors, then choose Smart Invert or Classic Invert. Or use accessibility shortcuts. 

Smart Invert Colors reverses the colors of the display, except for images, media, and some apps that use dark color styles.

Reduce the intensity of bright colors

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Display Accommodations, then turn on Reduce White Point.


Turn your iPad into a magnifying glass to zoom in on objects near you.

Set up Magnifier

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Magnifier, then turn on Magnifier. This adds Magnifier to accessibility shortcuts.

To turn on Magnifier, use accessibility shortcuts.

To adjust the magnification level, drag the Zoom Level slider.

To add more light, tap to turn the flashlight on or off.

To lock the focus, tap. Tap again to unlock the focus.

Freeze the frame

Tap . To adjust the magnification, drag the Zoom Level slider. To save the image, touch and hold the image, then tap Save Image. To unfreeze the frame, tap again.

Apply color filters

Tap. Tap the different color filters to preview their effects. 

To adjust the brightness and contrast, drag the sliders. 

To invert the colors, tap. 

To apply the selected filter and return to Magnifier screen, tap again.

Turn off Magnifier

Click the Home button.

Audio Descriptions

Audio Descriptions provides an audible description of video scenes. If you have a video that includes audio descriptions, iPad can play them for you.

Hear audio descriptions

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Audio Descriptions, then turn on Prefer Audio Descriptions.

Speak Selection, Speak Screen, and Typing Feedback

Even if VoiceOver is turned off, you can have iPad speak selected text or the entire screen. iPad can also provide feedback and speak text corrections and suggestions as you type.

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Speech, where you can:

  • turn on Speak Selection
  • turn on Speak Screen
  • choose whether content is highlighted as it's spoken
  • turn on and configure Typing Feedback: you can configure typing feedback for software and hardware keyboards and choose to have iPad speak: 
    • each character
    • entire words
    • auto-corrections
    • auto-capitalizations
    • typing predictions
  • adjust the speaking rate

Hear selected text

Select the text, then tap Speak.

Hear screen content

Swipe down with two fingers from the top of the screen. Use the controls that appear to pause speaking or adjust the rate.

Ask Siri

Say “speak screen.”

Hear typing feedback

Start typing.

Hear typing predictions

Go to Settings > General > Keyboards, and turn on Predictive. Then, go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Speech > Typing Feedback, and turn on Hold to Speak Predictions. Touch and hold a prediction to hear it spoken.

Contact us
Sensory Support Service
Elmfield House
Greystoke Avenue
BS10 6AY

Phone: 0117 903 8442
Text: 07407 814 763