About the VoiceOver rotor on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

You can use the VoiceOver rotor to change how VoiceOver works. You can change the VoiceOver volume or speaking rate, move from one item to the next on the screen, and more.

Use the VoiceOver rotor

First, if you haven't turned on VoiceOver, turn it on in Settings > General > Accessibility.

To use the rotor, rotate two fingers on your iOS device's screen as if you're turning a dial. VoiceOver will say the first rotor option. Keep rotating your fingers to hear more options. Lift your fingers to choose an option.

After you choose an option, flick your finger up or down on the screen to use it. For example, if you choose Words when a document is open, a flick down or up will move VoiceOver to the next or previous word.

Here's a list of rotor options and what they do.

Options for navigating

With all of these options, you can move from one item to the next by flicking on the screen from top to bottom with one finger. You can move VoiceOver to the previous item by flicking from bottom to top.

You can review text as you type with Characters, Words, and Lines:

  • Characters: Reads one character at a time.
  • Words: Reads one word at a time.
  • Lines: Reads one line at a time. 

Move through the organization of a page or screen with these options: 

  • Containers: Moves from one onscreen container to the next. The Dock and Home screen, for example, are containers. 
  • Headings: Moves from one heading to the next. Try using this rotor in Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
  • Landmarks: Moves between banners, navigation, and buttons in HTML content (such as a webpage or HTML email).
  • Same Item: Moves from one item to the next item of the same kind. Try this with the links in the results of a Safari web search.
  • Vertical Navigation: Moves up or down with one-finger vertical flicks. Try this on the Home screen.
  • Static Text: Moves from one line of static HTML text to the next. Static text is the main text on the page—not links or button names, for example.

Move from link to link with these options:

  • Links: Moves from one link to the next.
  • Visited Links: Moves from one link to the next, but only those that you've already clicked.
  • Non-visited Links: Moves from one link to the next, but only those that you haven't clicked yet.
  • In-Page Links: Moves from one in-page link to the next on a webpage.

Here are more ways to move through a page:

  • Tables: Moves the VoiceOver cursor to the start of a table on a webpage.
  • Lists: Moves the VoiceOver cursor to the start of a list on a webpage.
  • Buttons: Moves from one button to the next in HTML content.
  • Form Controls: Moves between buttons and menus when using a form.
  • Text Fields: Moves from one text field to the next in HTML content.
  • Search Fields: Moves from one search field to the next in HTML content.
  • Images: Moves to images.

Change how VoiceOver speaks, reads, and sounds

Speech Rate: Changes how fast VoiceOver speaks. Flick up or down with one finger to speak faster or slower. Changes by 5 percent with each flick.

Volume: Changes how loudly VoiceOver speaks. This is separate from the system volume. Flick up or down with one finger to speak louder or quieter. Changes by 5 percent with each flick. 

Punctuation: Changes how VoiceOver reads punctuation. Flick up or down with one finger to switch between all, some, and no punctuation.

Sounds: Turns VoiceOver sound effects—clicks and cursor sounds—on or off. Flick up or down with one finger.

Hints: Turns VoiceOver Hints on or off. Flick up or down with one finger.

Audio Ducking: Lowers the volume of other audio content when VoiceOver speaks. Flick up or down with one finger.

Change how you type

Use the Typing Mode option to switch between Standard Typing, Touch Typing, and Direct Touch typing modes. Flick up or down with one finger to switch between modes.

Instead of using the rotor, you can go to Settings > General > Accessibility > VoiceOver > Typing Style to choose a typing mode.

Here's how to use the typing modes:

Standard Typing

Select a key on the keyboard by swiping left or right, then double-tap to enter the character. Or move your finger around the keyboard to select a key and, while continuing to touch the key with one finger, tap the screen with another finger.

VoiceOver speaks the key when you select it and again when you enter the character.

Touch Typing

Touch a key on the keyboard to select it, then lift your finger to enter the character. If you touch the wrong key, slide your finger to the key you want.

VoiceOver speaks the character for each key when you touch it. VoiceOver enters a character when you lift your finger.

Direct Touch Typing

Type the same as when VoiceOver is off. This mode turns off VoiceOver for typing only.

Options for input, actions, and zoom

Handwriting: Lets you hand write text instead of typing with the keyboard.

Braille Screen Input: Turns on the onscreen braille keyboard.

Actions: Chooses what happens when you double-tap with one finger. For example, in Mail, this rotor chooses from Delete, Activate Item, Mark Read, Flag, and others.

Zoom: Zooms in and out. Flick with one finger from top to bottom, or from bottom to top. Try this with the Camera app. This doesn't control the Zoom Accessibility feature.

Choose your options

Some of the options above are on the rotor by default, and some are optional.

To choose your rotor options, go to Settings > General > Accessibility > VoiceOver > Rotor. Then select the options you want to show up in the rotor.

Some options aren't always on the rotor. For example, Typing Mode is on the rotor only when there's a keyboard.

Published Date: Wed Jun 21 18:26:41 GMT 2017