Spoken AAC

An adult women and a little girl smile at each other while each touching their chins in a speech exercise.

Today we’re going to look at a simple, yet elegant AAC app that could be very helpful for individuals who struggle with speech, processing, social interactions, and more. Spoken AAC is an augmentative and alternative communication app that is available for iOS and Android. It requires no specialized hardware and instead harnesses the power of your smartphone to do what it needs to do.

And while there are some cons to not having a dedicated piece of standalone hardware to communicate with — less support, less features, ties up your phone — most independent adults would rather use their smartphone for the same purpose if it meant not being identified as being different.

Spoken strikes a great balance between utility and anonymity, giving you everything you need to communicate while still allowing you to feel like any other smartphone-carrying student or employee. Not only does it feature some very helpful accessibility features and preferences, but the app even features some especially novel approaches to communication.

Unlike many other AAC apps or devices, Spoken offers a couple of alternatives to the traditional tap method of selecting words or phrases to be spoken aloud. Handwriting mode allows users to cursive write words and letters on screen and drawing mode allows drawn images to be translated into text. While testing the app in drawing mode, I drew a crude cat, and the app instantly recognized it as such.

The app also boasts some very useful accessibility features, such as:

  • Large Print
  • Dark Mode
  • Show Keyboard on Start
  • Show Word Dividers
  • Attention Light
  • Attention Sound
  • Speak Each Word as I Enter It
  • Delay Audio for Bluetooth
  • Use Haptic Feedback

As we always say, if you or someone in your life is struggling with the challenges that we’ve mentioned today, please reach out to the New Brunswick Association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists for a proper diagnosis and expert recommendations.

The features mentioned above are available as part of the initial premium trial that will automatically begin after opening the app. Once the initial trial period is over, the premium version of the app will be available for purchase for around $10 CDN per month. To learn more, click here.

This post originally appeared on the AT Help Desk website.

Tags: apps, assistive technology, AT HelpDesk, Atlantic Regional Office

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