ClaroSpeak iOS 3.0 Released

Version 3 of our ClaroSpeak for iOS app was released towards the end of May 2018 and brought with it lots of great new features and improvements.  For a complete list of these changes, you can check the release notes here: ClaroSpeak 3.0 release notes.

One of the biggest changes gives everyone access to all of the iOS system voices, free of charge.  This means you can now choose male and female variants for different voice languages, as well as accessing higher-quality versions and the Siri voices.

Another change saw the font and colour options now being accessible from the keyboard:

font and colour button

font and colour button

This change not only lets you change these settings more quickly, but it also lets you see the changes as they are applied, so you can be sure to choose the right settings for you:

settings in real time

settings in real time

One of the best new features in V3 is the addition of the “Read with ClaroSpeak” web extension.  This lets you choose a webpage from Safari, or other browsers, and then have that web page read back to you with highlighting.  You can access this new extension from the Share menu in your browser app:

accessing "Read with ClaroSpeak" button

accessing “Read with ClaroSpeak” button

You can then tap on some text to set the start point and tap the play button and the text will be spoken back with highlighting so you can follow the text as it is being spoken:

speech with highlighting

speech with highlighting

Read more

 

ClaroSpeak V2.6 Released

The start of May 2017 brought a big update to our ClaroSpeak app.  Read below for more details.

iCloud and Locations integration

You can now open and save files directly from your iCloud Drive and other locations on your device.

This new feature gives you the ability to import or export your files from any app on your device, without ever having to leave the ClaroSpeak app.

Four free voices

The existing voices that came shipped with ClaroSpeak have been removed and you can now download 4 free voices in the language of your choice. This means you can get the exact voices in the languages that you need, to match your requirements.

App containers

ClaroSpeak can now share its documents with different versions, so Free, Standard and Plus versions of the app can all access the same documents.  This is useful if you’ve just upgraded: you no longer have to manually transfer over documents.  It can also act as a backup incase you need to remove a version of ClaroSpeak: if you have another version of the app installed, your files will be remembered.

Settings cleanup

The settings menu has been streamlined and reorganised to make it easier to navigate. There is also a new speech rate slider that is more accurate and lets you select more precise values.

Integrated with the Audio controls on the iOS control centre

ClaroSpeak audio can now be controlled using the iOS controls on the control centre, allowing you quickly stop. play and skip through, without having to enter the app.

Support for Google SignIn

Full support for the new Google Authentication, so you can access Google Drive in the app.

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.

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!

ClaroSpeak V2.4 Released

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

What’s New in V2.4?

  • ClaroSpeak now uses the latest Nuance Vocalizer Expressive voices.
  • ClaroSpeak UK now includes Scottish Fiona as standard.
  • ClaroSpeak UK no longer includes a Spanish and French voice as standard, however, you can use any of the iOS system voices which allow you to have foreign text read back to you. You can download an enhanced version of system voices, we have written a support article on how to do this.
  • The in-app purchase voice store now contains more voices to purchase. These are high-quality Nuance Expressive and Acapela voices. Click to hear samples of all the available voices.
  • When viewing recorded audio files you can now export them via Airdrop or Messages as well as email.
  • ClaroSpeak Plus Nordic and Netherlands are now available in the corresponding App Stores. ClaroSpeak Plus Nordic includes Acapela voices as standard as well as OCR.
  • Minor bug fixes.

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

ClaroSpeak New Release

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The ClaroSpeak text-to-speech App now brings the ‘Capture Text From Photo’ option and Google Drive to all ClaroSpeak users.

With ClaroSpeak’s advanced ‘Optical Character Recognition’ (OCR), users can easily photograph a document or screen-shot an image with text, and have this text extracted into ClaroSpeak.

The ClaroSpeak update now includes Google Drive and Google Docs. Easily save, load and open files to your Google Drive account or open Google Docs in ClaroSpeak.

ClaroSpeak is a quality text-to-speech App for proofreading text through listening, helping with reading and literacy development, creating audio files from any text and scanning any document to convert the text into editable text. ClaroSpeak offers the option of visual highlighting in sync with the spoken words – and a great range of colour and font settings to allow for optimum reading.

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ClaroSpeak Reviews And Quotes

ClaroSpeak “This App is absolutely brilliant! I’m currently doing a degree & have M.E, so at times I am unable to read when experiencing a relapse. I have the PC version of ClaroSpeak, I thought i’d try the App version, so glad I did. I am able to upload all module notes & open to Claro via Dropbox. This App has really helped me with my studies. I have it on my iPad & iPhone, I just listen, make notes where necessary, even on the go.” PhonexRising78 (App store)

Events and Exhibitions March 2014

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Claro Software will be attending the Barry Bennett Workshop event in Reading and the BDA International Conference in Guildford, at the end of March.

The annual Barry Bennett Workshop event at Wokefield Park in Reading is being held from the 27th to 28th of March. The workshops bring together key suppliers of assistive technology, hardware and software and those who support SEN students in secondary and higher education.

 

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The BDA International Conference is taking place at the G-Live Conference Centre in Guildford on the 27th to 29th March. This years conference theme is – ‘Creating an Impact through Innovation’, in other words, that innovative research can make a real impact on educational practice. This really gets to the heart of what is special about this conference in particular…’ . Dr Julia Carroll: IC Conference Chair

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At both these events Claro will be showing all the latest text-to-speech software including PC, Mac and App versions of our assistive software range. Visit our stand for a live demonstration, or sign up for free copies of our text-to-speech Apps.

Get Claro On Multiple Devices

ClaroRead for PC and Mac are the ideal solution for students struggling with reading and writing. With Claro students can now get text-to-speech software on multiple devices including desktop computer, mobile or iPad. This is easily achieved with our assistive technology iPhone and iPad Apps.

Our Apps are fully integrated with our desktop software, using DropBox integration. Scan documents with ClaroRead Plus and listen to, proof or edit documents on the go with ClaroSpeak and ClaroPDF.

ClaroSpeak is a high-quality text-to-speech reader capable of speaking any accessible text with a range of human-sounding high-quality voices. ClaroSpeak offers the option of visual highlighting in-sync with the spoken words, a great range of colour and font settings to allow for optimum reading, word prediction and completion to help with writing. ClaroSpeak is a quality App for proofreading text through listening, helping with reading and literacy development and creating audio files from any text.

ClaroPDF is an accessible, professional and user-friendly PDF viewer, reader and annotator. View text PDF files and listen to them with a human-quality voice and synchronised highlighting. Create audio annotations and place them anywhere on a PDF. Annotate and mark up text or image PDF files with full compatibility with other popular PDF Apps and programs in Windows and Mac. ClaroPDF is designed as an accessible productivity, reading and study PDF tool for all.

Software Reviews And Quotes

ClaroRead “I think programs like ClaroRead are absolutely invaluable. For me, it is like putting on a pair of reading glasses. When I switch on my computer, I always use ClaroRead. It’s critical.” David Edwards, Birmingham, Dyslexic

ClaroPDF “It is one of the best apps we’ve purchased and we have over 500! It is on my “top ten” list and one that I always install on an iPad when we send them out for loan!“ Wendy Kay Alameda

ClaroSpeak “This app is absolutely brilliant! I’m currently doing a degree & have M.E, so at times I am unable to read when experiencing a relapse. I have the PC version of ClaroSpeak, I thought I’d try the app version, so glad I did. I am able to upload all module notes & open to Claro via Box & Dropbox. This app has really helped me with my studies. I have it on my iPad & iPhone, I just listen, make notes where necessary, even on the go.“ App Store review

ClaroSpeak – Predict and Complete

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Our latest ClaroSpeak update brings Word Prediction and Completion free to all ClaroSpeak users. Word Prediction and Completion can speed up typing, help with choosing the right word and let users use words without worrying about how to spell them.

Word Prediction and Completion in ClaroSpeak takes account of word frequency and previous words. There is an initial Word Prediction list loaded on startup, and ClaroSpeak can learn new words as they are typed. The predicted words appear on the keyboard and can be spoken. Train the word prediction dictionary or create a new one from a word list.

ClaroSpeak with Word Prediction and Completion is now available in 14 languages. For a full list of our language and voice list available through in app purchase through ClaroSpeak click here.

ClaroSpeak is a quality text-to-speech app for proofreading text through listening, helping with reading and literacy development and creating audio files from any text. Advanced features make proofing and editing more accurate and users more efficient. ClaroSpeak offers the option of visual highlighting in sync with the spoken words – and a great range of colour and font settings to allow for optimum reading.

Find out more on iTunes.

Education app of the week: ClaroSpeak for iPad

There are plenty of reading and text dictation apps out there, but the best one we’ve found for dyslexia sufferers, SEN and pupils with reading difficulties has to be ClaroSpeak. With a load of customisation and import options, here’s why we’re recommending it to schools…

What is ClaroSpeak?

On the surface, ClaroSpeak (Claro Software Limited, £3.99) is a reader/text dictation app that will read out loud any text you import into it in what Claro call “human-sounding high-quality voices”. Where it gets interesting is the level of customisation – it allows you to import a text file, set up a wide range of font types and sizes, colours and backgrounds, and then have the text read to you, with each sentence highlighted in a choice of colours as it’s read. It also allows you to edit the text and then export it as text or as a spoken audio file.

How could it benefit the classroom?

The place we could see this making the most impact is with pupils with reading difficulties, be it SEN, dyslexia or even ESL – having English language text read aloud does wonders for those learning English as a second language. As you can customise the backgrounds and styles, you can make the text a lot less cluttered and busy, so that it’s easier to read, and the actual speaking voices are really quite accurate. There are male and female British English voices and, intriguingly, French and Spanish as well. The ability to load a piece of French text, and have it read back in a good French accent, while highlighting the spoken text might make this interesting in Modern Foreign Languages too!

What’s the best feature?

One of the most remarkable features of ClaroSpeak is that you can open text directly from Dropbox. This might not sound like a massive thing, but many apps like Evernote require you to export from Dropbox, rather than importing from within the app. That means a lot less hassle when sharing documents with pupils, as you can send out files via Dropbox, then open them up within ClaroSpeak, without having to exit the app and open up the Dropbox app.

What’s also interesting is that Claro have just updated ClaroSpeak to make it read out loud in the background. Now, you can exit the app and get on with other stuff like taking notes, while ClaroSpeak still reads the document back to you from the dock.

Where can I get it?

You can download ClaroSpeak (Claro Software Ltd, £3.99) either from the App Store on your iPad or from iTunes. It’s not free, but if you’re buying more than 20 instances of the app, you can get a 50% discount under Apple’s Volume Purchase Programme, making it just £1.99.

More Information