ClaroRead Anywhere V10 Released

We have updated ClaroSpeak Web and renamed it ClaroRead Anywhere. We think the name change reflects how it provides the key features we know people need – speech with highlighting, OCR, PDF – just like ClaroRead for PC and Mac and Chromebook, but with the added advantage that it can be used on any modern platform – Android, iOS, Windows, Mac – without the need for installation.

Other changes in this version include:

  • Mozilla Firefox users will find that they can use installed system voices in ClaroRead Anywhere. For Windows users, this includes the Vocalizer voices that come with ClaroRead, such as Daniel. For Apple Mac users, this includes the high-quality voices provided by Apple. All of these work offline, so you do not need an Internet connection.
  • We’ve changed how taking a photograph (or opening an image file) works. Instead of simply extracting the text for you, you now get an accessible PDF version of the photo so you can see the original text in context when you play it. Much better for understanding what you’re reading.

Related

ClaroRead Cloud OCR V2 Released

ClaroRead Cloud OCR is our online OCR document conversion service. You can send it any file type you would use in ClaroRead Plus or Pro – PDF, TIFF, JPEG – and get back an accessible PDF, Word or text file, or take a photo and get the text in the picture back. It’s great for organisations big and small that want to provide OCR capability across machines and tablets and phones without having to manage the installation of ClaroRead Plus or any other software.

We’ve upgraded ClaroRead Cloud OCR to V2, and the new version features better integration with three popular Cloud storage mechanisms. Dropbox, Google Drive and OneDrive are now all supported within ClaroRead Cloud OCR: you can select any file from your account with one of these services, OCR it, and save the result back to your Cloud storage – all entirely within your browser!

Select a local file, take a photo or get a document from your Cloud storage service:
ClaroRead Cloud OCR V2 Input

Choose the accessible output format:
ClaroRead Cloud OCR V2 Output

Save to your local machine or phone, or save back to Cloud storage:
ClaroRead Cloud OCR V2 Save

All the features and simplicity of V1 are there: you can still take photos and OCR them on your phone, and convert local files from your computer, but we hope the new Cloud features make it a better fit for our users moving to Cloud-based solutions.

Try out ClaroRead Cloud OCR now by signing up for ClaroRead Cloud today and getting five documents a month completely free!

ClaroRead for Mac V6 Release Notes

What’s New in V6.0?

  • A New Integrated Optical Character Recognition engine – ClaroRead Plus for Mac now includes its own integrated optical character recognition engine which gives you the rapid Scan from Screen function to capture any inaccessible text, as well as quickly converting scanned files to accessible PDF, Word and text files.
  • New Scan from Paper feature – you can now quickly launch the MacOS Image Capture app and immediately get to scanning in physical documents and creating accessible, digital copies of them using “Scan to ClaroRead”*.
  • New Scan from PDF/File feature – using the new Scan from PDF/File feature you can convert PDF or image files to fully accessible formats, so that ClaroRead can then read aloud. You can also scan inaccessible files and create editable output formats, such as DOCX. Supported output formats are PDF, DOCX, TXT and RTF *.
  • New Scan from screen feature – with the new Scan from screen feature you can select an area of the screen to be read with your mouse and ClaroRead will quickly and accurately scan your chosen area and read it aloud. You can now instantly read anything on your screen as well as copy it to the clipboard.
  • Launch ClaroRead with PDF and image files. ClaroRead now supports opening of PDF and image files directly, so you can choose a PDF/image file, right-click and select Open With, choose ClaroRead and it will launch ClaroRead and start the file scanning process.
  • New extra app – ClaroSpeak. ClaroSpeak is a supportive reading and speaking app that read PDF files, Microsoft Word document, text files and more, aloud, with synchronised highlighting. When you open a document in ClaroSpeak, the text of the document gets copied in to the ClaroSpeak window and then you can also edit any text. ClaroSpeaks built-in text prediction and echo features can help you maintain accurate typing.

Bug fixes

  • Fixed an issue that could cause text in Microsoft Word documents to be removed when speaking them and quickly moving/switching between different documents.
  • Fixed an issue where some prediction items were being spoken twice.

* indicates features only available in ClaroRead Plus

System Requirements

ClaroRead SE/Standard/Plus for Mac:

  • Mac computer with an Intel processor
  • Mac OS X 10.8 or later
  • 850MB of disk space
  • 200MB-650MB for each voice

Recommended:

  • Microsoft Word 2008, 2011, 2016
  • Pages ‘09 (V4)

ClaroRead Pro for Mac:

  • Mac computer with an Intel processor
  • Mac OS X 10.8 or later
  • 1.3GB of disk space
  • 200MB-650MB for each voice

Recommended:

  • Microsoft Word 2008, 2011, 2016
  • Pages ‘09 (V4)

ClaroRead 7.1 Released

We are pleased to announce the update of ClaroRead for Windows to Version 7.1.

This version makes it even easier to download extra text to speech voices. It also adds “Scan from Screen” to ClaroRead SE and ClaroRead Standard, speaking any inaccessible text from the screen.

We’ve done a quick video to show the full details:


You can also read our detailed ClaroRead 7.1 Release Notes.

You can get the latest ClaroRead 7.1 SE and Standard versions by logging in to ClaroRead Cloud and entering your ClaroRead licence key. You can then download ClaroRead 7.1, any of our other Windows programs, any of our 80 high-quality text-to-speech voices in 30 languages, and even ClaroRead for Mac! If you are a ClaroRead Plus or ClaroRead Pro user you can get the free update via the ClaroUp updater program.

If you own a copy of ClaroRead but don’t have a licence key, please contact support@clarosoftware.com. Note that ClaroRead 6.5 or 7.0 keys work still – you don’t need a new ClaroRead 7.1 key if you have a ClaroRead 6 or 7 key already.

We are committed to keeping up with the latest technologies. ClaroRead 7 (and ClaroRead 6) – both support the latest Microsoft Office 2016 and Windows 10.

We are also excited to announce an update to v8.08 of ClaroRead Chrome, a Google Chrome extension that provides text-to-speech and screen tinting for any webpage in Google Chrome on Windows, Mac or Chromebook – including speech with highlighting in Google Docs, Word Prediction and more. It is currently still free in the Chrome Web Store from:

ClaroSpeak Chrome App 9 Released

We have updated our free ClaroSpeak Chrome App. The new version, version 9, now opens Word DOCX files and Adobe PDF files for reading with highlighting. You can also open the cross-platform rich text RTF format. In PDF view you get a thumbnail view, printing and full text search too.

Opening these hugely popular file types makes ClaroSpeak Chrome a powerful tool for independent reading, research, writing and proofing. It’s not a fully-fledged word processor though: if you’re looking for integration with a powerful editor like Google Docs, we suggest you check out our ClaroRead Chrome Extension – also free in the Chrome Web Store.

We’ve also added speech recognition for dictation of short passages of text in fifteen languages including English and Spanish. Speech recognition is useful but requires a little practice and good audio – a relatively quiet room, a reasonable microphone. However, it’s such a powerful tool for some users we wanted to include it.

We’ve also improved speech. You can now vary the rate of speech, and echo sentences as you type them, and highlighting is improved. Finally, our speaking dictionary now supports German, French and Spanish as well as Swedish, English and Dutch.

You can get the ClaroSpeak Chrome App free from the Chrome Web Store.

ClaroRead Chrome Extension 6 Released

We have updated our free Chrome extension, ClaroRead Chrome.

Existing users should all have been automatically updated. You can get it now from the Chrome Web Store.

Version 6 includes some new features:

Read PDFs with highlighting.
Chrome opens PDF documents in the browser just like web pages. With ClaroRead Chrome you can have these PDFs read back to you with highlighting. Click Play and the whole PDF will be read aloud, sentence by sentence. Of course, the PDF needs to be an accessible non-image PDF for this to work – you may want to check out our ClaroRead Cloud OCR Web App if you need to convert a PDF you find that doesn’t read.
Read Google Docs extensions with hover or select.
Google Docs has extensions and add-ons that help you with your writing, such as spell-checking or translation. ClaroRead Chrome will now speak these extensions – just hover over items or select text in them.
Unlock premium features
Google for Education and Google for Work admins can deploy ClaroRead Chrome to their users and unlock premium features, including best-quality text-to-speech voices.

ClaroRead for Mac V5.3 Released

ClaroRead V5.3 is now released! Update using ClaroUp. Below is a list of what’s new:

  • Fully compatible with the new Mac OS X 10.11 El Capitan operating system.
  • Prediction window size can now be adjusted (drag the bottom right corner of the window). This will increase/decrease the font size of the suggestions.
  • Updated Vocalizer Expressive voice selection. See ‘ClaroRead’ > ‘Download more Claro voices’ in the ClaroRead file menu.
  • ClaroView’s screen overlay now works over multiple monitors.
  • Other minor bug fixes and improvements.

ClaroSpeak V2.5 Released

The latest version of ClaroSpeak is now available in the App Store!

What’s New in V2.5?

  • Rich text formatting. You can now bold, italicise, underline, bullet and add images to your ClaroSpeak document.
  • New layout settings. Change the character, line, paragraph spacing as well as the page margin to view text more easily.
  • More font types. A larger number of font types are available to use in settings.
  • Claro autocorrect. We’ve compiled a list of common misspellings which ClaroSpeak will use to correct what you type.
  • Open image files. Open image files in ClaroSpeak to begin the OCR process to convert the image into text.
  • Open in. Using the Export > ‘Open in…’ option allows you to open your document in other apps on your device which are capable of handling RTF files.
  • Print. Print is now an option in the export menu. Compatible with AirPrint printers.

Follow @ClaroSpeak on Twitter for the latest news and hints & tips.

Check out The Codpasts recent review of ClaroSpeak Plus!

ClaroPDF V1.4.2 Released

The latest version of ClaroPDF is now available in the App Store!

What’s New in V1.4?

  • Photo to PDF: You can now convert photos and other images to fully accessible Text PDF files that can be spoken, searched, copied and highlighted*. Using this new feature, you can now turn paper into speakable PDF files that you can annotate.

Find out more about this new feature in our Exploring Photo to PDF article.

  • Convert to Text PDF: As well as converting photos, you can also convert any PDF file in ClaroPDF into a fully accessible Text PDF file. Along with making these PDF files speakable, it will also compress them, reducing file size.
  • *50 pages can be converted using the 50 included credits. Further credit can be purchased in app.
  • Sync with iCloud: You can now sync ClaroPDF with your iCloud account. This lets you store and synchronise your PDF files and annotations across multiple devices. Sync with iCloud can also act as a document backup so you can keep your documents safe.
  • Save as PDF app extension: Save as PDF lets you convert text, images and webpages to PDF files from Safari and almost any other app that handles text, images or webpages. When converted, these new PDF files will appear in your documents list inside ClaroPDF.
  • New voice ranges: The Acapela and CereProc voice ranges are now available to download for ClaroPDF, allowing even more accents and dialogues. These new voices are available as in app purchases.  This new version of ClaroPDF also comes with a free download of the Scottish Heather CereProc voice, which you can download from inside ClaroPDF.
  • Improved annotations import/export: The import/export annotations feature in ClaroPDF now has the standard .xfdf file format to allow greater compatibility with other applications.
  • Improved switch mechanism: The switch control in ClaroPDF has been updated to allow greater compatibility with more bluetooth switch devices.
  • Organised Settings menu: The Settings menu in ClaroPDF has now been condensed into separate section windows, with the main settings remaining on the main Settings page. This makes the Settings menu easier to read and quicker to navigate.

Follow @ClaroPDF on Twitter for the latest news and hints & tips.

Check out The Codpasts recent review of our ClaroSpeak Plus App!

Exploring Photo to PDF

Exploring Photo to PDF in ClaroPDF
We are excited to announce the new Photo to PDF feature in ClaroPDF V1.4.  This powerful new feature allows you to turn photos of papers, worksheets, books, etc into PDF files that can be spoken, searched and fully annotated.

The new Photo to PDF feature is accessed from the Open button in ClaroPDF:

Photo_to_pdf

Pressing this will allow you to choose an existing photo from your library, or take a new one using your device’s camera.  Once you have selected a photo, give your PDF file a name:

Save as name

Press Save, and ClaroPDF will create an image PDF from the photo that you selected:

photo_pdf

With your new image PDF, you can perform simple annotation drawings on it:

basic annotations

As mentioned above, this new PDF is an image PDF, this means it doesn’t yet contain any text.  If you try to press play to speak the PDF or tap the search button to search the PDF, a message will pop up informing you that this PDF is an image PDF and needs to be converted:

this is an image pdf

If you want to convert this image PDF to a text PDF, you can press Yes in this message box, or you can choose Convert PDF from the ClaroPDF Save as menu:

convert PDF

When you select this option, a new message will pop up, informing you of the amount of credits it will cost to convert this PDF file.  The cost is one credit per page:

Convert to Text PDF prompt

When you select Yes to convert your PDF file, ClaroPDF will send your PDF off to our ClaroPDF Cloud OCR server to convert it.  An internet connection is required for the conversion process.  A progress bar will appear on the top toolbar to let you know the current progress:

converting

 

The conversion is done in the background so you are still free to use ClaroPDF whilst the conversion is underway.

When the conversion has finished, you will be prompted for a file name.  Enter a name and press Save:

Save as Converted

Once you press Save, ClaroPDF will open your new text PDF and you speak it, search it and fully annotated it:

speakhighlight_1 highlght_2

There are also some new settings for this new feature to help you maximise your conversions.  The Settings menu in ClaroPDF has now been reorganised and you can find the settings for the conversions under Text PDF Conversion:

text_pdf_conversion_Settings

The main setting in here is Convert to Text PDF in Cloud.  This is switched off by default.  If you switch this on, then ClaroPDF will automatically prepare to convert your photos to text PDFs when you select one using Photo to PDF.  With this setting switched on, you don’t have to manually Select Save as -> Convert PDF… to convert your PDF to a text PDF.

text_pdf_conversion_settings_main

In the Text PDF Conversion settings, you can also view your current credits and add more if you need some.  The first time each user runs ClaroPDF, they will be credited with 50 free credits so they sample the Text PDF Conversion feature.

In the advanced section of Settings, there is a new setting called PDF image detection.  This is switched off by default.  If you switch this on, then whenever you open an image PDF, ClaroPDF will tell you that it is an image PDF.  This is useful if you are getting PDF files from external sources and you don’t know if you can speak/annotate them or not:

 

pdf_image_detection