ClaroRead Chrome Extension 8 Released

A new version of the ClaroRead Chrome extension is now available from the Chrome Web Store. Of course, if you already have it installed in Google Chrome or your Chromebook, it will automatically update.

  • If you have the (paid-for) version of ClaroRead Chrome then you also gain the ability to scan from the screen. This speaks any text in your browser, including text in images and inaccessible displays. For example, you can speak text from pages in Google Books, even though you cannot save or select the text.
  • You can now change the colour of text highlighting when you use the “Click and play” option. Just click on the “Text Highlight Colour” option in settings and choose the colour that you find most comfortable and vivid to follow as you listen to ClaroRead Chrome reading a document aloud.
  • We’ve introduced word prediction in a floating window. Just check “Use Word Prediction” in settings and type and you will see up to five suggestions appear. Click on a suggestion to have it complete the word you have started. Hover over a suggestion to hear it read aloud (if you have “Speak under mouse” checked.) This can help you get the right word, and make sure it is correctly spelled, when you are writing.
  • You gain the ability to speak comments aloud in Google Docs documents – just select with the mouse or hover (if these options are turned on in settings!

Install ClaroRead Chrome for free now on your Windows PC, Apple Mac or Chromebook and check it out!

“DYSboxing 8: ClaroRead Text-to-Speech Software Review”

Another short but really useful video from the great Codpast blog goes through the stand-out features of ClaroRead for Windows PC. Proofing, reading, positioning the floating toolbar, shortcut keys, saving text to audio, spellchecking and homophone checking are all demonstrated in double-quick time.

Want to try ClaroRead out yourself? Download a free 15-day ClaroRead trial to try on your computer.

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.

ClaroSpeak Web 9 Released

We have updated our online cross-platform Web App, ClaroSpeak Web, to Version 9. ClaroSpeak Web is designed to work on any modern browser on any platform – Windows, Mac OSX, iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Chromebook. It gives you text-to-speech anywhere.

In this new version:

  • You were already able to paste in text from web pages and documents, or open text, HTML and PDF files to read them back. Now you can open Microsoft Word DOCX and Rich Text RTF files directly in the browser. If you are online you can also open and Microsoft Word DOC, OpenOffice/LibreOffice ODT and Apple Pages documents (using our servers to process them – hence the need to be online.) Formatting that is suitable (e.g. boldness and size, not floating text boxes) is retained and you can play and edit the text at will.
  • We’ve added support for OneDrive to the existing Google Drive and Dropbox cloud storage systems, so you can open PDF and DOCX and other documents from your OneDrive account.
  • The speaking dictionary now supports French, Spanish and German words. Switch to a French, Spanish or German voice to look up the selected word and hear its definition read aloud.

See also the ClaroSpeak Web Release Notes. ClaroSpeak Web is available through ClaroRead Cloud site licences and individual accounts.

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.

Claro Software at Bett 2016

We are pleased to be exhibiting at the Bett 2016 educational technology show in London, UK, from Wednesday 20 January to Saturday 23 January 2016. We will be at Hall/Stand H410 and are showing the latest features and cloud services of ClaroRead for Windows, Mac, Chrome and Cloud, as well as iOS Apps ClaroPDF, ClaroSpeak and Claro ScanPen. Do come visit!


Bett 2016 Show

ClaroRead for faster and more accurate assignments

Sarah, a student at Hereford Sixth Form College, UK, and ClaroRead user

‘I have problems reading black text on a white background,’ said Sarah. ‘It tends to go blurry and I need a blue overlay. I’ve got really poor handwriting. I am quite a good reader but I am very slow and my spelling is atrocious!’
Sarah is a student at Hereford Sixth Form College. Last year she took some extra GCSEs and this year is studying A-level history and AS Health and Social Care. She has problems keeping pace with the reading required and getting her assignments finished on time. Learning Support Assessor Shaneagh Moriarty suggested that she try ClaroRead software which is freely available to any students at the college.

‘I was introduced to Claro my second year at the college and I use it on a laptop. I’m using it to read web pages, college handouts and any work that I have written. If I hear a voice reading my essay back to me, I can see if it makes sense.

‘I have been using it for about 18 months now and I’m noticing a big difference. I can finish my work faster. I hold more information in my head and it’s even helping me with my spelling as I hear the word and see it written on the screen at the same time.

‘I can’t praise ClaroRead enough!’

ClaroRead

ClaroRead 7 Released

We have updated ClaroRead for PC so it runs more smoothly and easily than ever. We’ve improved features, including spellcheck, reading and scanning. But we have kept it as simple as it always has been to get on with reading and proofing and working. ClaroRead 7 has been shipping in the UK since August and is now generally available for download world-wide.

You can get the latest ClaroRead by logging in to ClaroRead Cloud and entering your ClaroRead licence key. You can then download ClaroRead 7, 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 own a copy of ClaroRead but don’t have a licence key, please contact support@clarosoftware.com to get one. Note that ClaroRead 6 or 7 keys work just the same – you don’t need a new ClaroRead 7 key if you have a ClaroRead 6 one 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 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. It is currently free in the Chrome Web Store so get it now:

We’ve also done a quick video to complement the full release notes: