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February 29, 2024

Remember when cell phones were used to make calls and a round or two of Snake? Today’s cell phones are professional-grade cameras, PDF scanners, and even car keys.

I keep a digital copy of my driver’s license on my phone because it’s so convenient. Here’s how to do it.

It’s also very easy to pay with your mobile phone. party? I have a setup guide.

Your phone can do more. Many of these features can be found in the accessibility settings. Developers create them for people who need extra help using their phones — but they’re handy for just about anyone.

1. Add captions to your video calls, podcasts, or phone calls

Not every video chat takes place in a quiet space—or maybe your hearing isn’t great. no problem. You can get real-time subtitles for video chats, podcasts, calls, music, and videos.

On iPhone:

  • go set up > Accessibility > subtitles and subtitles.
  • Next to Closed Captioning and SDH toggle the switch to exist Location.

To turn on Live Caption on your Android phone:

  • go set up > Accessibility > subtitle preference.
  • tap show subtitles Open it.

Amazon might start offering mobile service to your phone. (CyberGuy.com)

I scoured all tech news so you don’t have to. Get my smart free newsletter and read your favorite 5 minutes a day.

2. Translate conversations in real time

Although I promise myself every year to learn a new language, it never materializes. The next time you meet someone you can’t communicate with, pull out your phone to help. No, you can do this without paying anything.

On iPhone:

  • Open translation app. It comes pre-installed.
  • click arrow Next to both languages, select the language you want to translate between.
  • click on one of the languages Start typing or speaking into the microphone. notes: The input language icon appears next to the language you are translating to.
  • To switch the input language, click the other languages.
  • Both languages ​​will display what you say or type on your phone.

A map buried in your phone reveals where you’ve been and the photos you took there

On Android, Download the Google Translate app. free.

  • Open the application.
  • tap dialogue and allow the app to record audio.
  • choose car. When you talk to each other, your phone will show the translation.
  • You can click speaker icon Have your phone read translations aloud.

On the computer? The tool claims to be six times more accurate than Google Translate.

3. Alert you if the dog is barking, the child is crying, or the glass is broken

Depending on your hearing and the layout of your home, some sounds may bypass you. Your phone can help. You shouldn’t rely on it to babysit or keep your pets safe, but it’s a great fallback in case the need arises.

man smiling at his smartphone

Man sitting on a bench outside and smiling at his phone (Cyberguy.com)

To turn on voice recognition on iPhone:

  • go set up > Accessibility > voice recognitionthen slide the toggle right.
  • tap sound and turn on the sound you want your phone to recognize.

To turn on sound notifications on your Android phone:

  • go set up > Accessibility > sound notification.
  • tap Turn on sound notificationsThen Open. You need permission to record audio.
  • click gear icon. You can choose which sounds to be notified and how.

Have an Amazon Echo at home? It can enhance your home security. Here’s how to set up Alexa Guard.

4. Acts as a makeshift hearing aid

Live Listen is designed for people with hearing problems, and you can set it up if you have a pair of AirPods or Powerbeats Pro wireless earbuds paired with your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

The range of AirPods combined with Live Listen is debated, but the consensus is around 50 feet. Conversations can be heard through walls at close range, but the quality may be reduced depending on the material of the wall. No, I’m not encouraging you to snoop.

First, add the mode to the control center:

  • go set upthen tap control center.
  • scroll down until you reach hearing then click green + sign.
  • click return key Save Settings.

To use live listening:

  • Open control center then click ear icon.
  • click live listening icon.
  • Hold your device in front of the audio source you want to listen to.

Once everything is set up correctly, you will see the headphone audio level as the conversation takes place.

Android’s Sound Amplifier feature works similarly.

  • go set up > Accessibility > sound amplifier.
  • choose Turn on the sound amplifier. From here you can add icons to your application list if desired.
  • Choose whether you want to amplify the sound coming into the microphone or the media playing on your phone.
  • Connect your headset and follow the on-screen instructions.

More wisdom: 10 iPhone tricks I use every day and you will too

5. Read or describe what is happening on the screen

You can tap an item on the screen and hear it read or described to you. You can also do this for the entire screen. To turn on spoken content on iPhone:

  • go set up > Accessibility > spoken content.
  • Open say choice Get a speak button when text is highlighted.
  • Open read screen. Swipe down from the top of the screen with two fingers to hear the screen.

How to Go Paperless by Turning Your Phone Into a Portable Scanner

Android phones can do the same. Even cooler, you can point your camera at text or a picture and have it read or describe it aloud. To turn on Select to Speak:

  • go set up > Accessibility > choose to speak.
  • to turn exist Select the Read aloud shortcut. NOTE: You need to give it full control over your device.
  • click shortcut Use it on screen.

Your phone is a mess. Here’s how to quickly clean up your photo library.

maintain your technical knowledge

My popular podcast is called “Kim Komando Today. “It’s a solid 30 minutes of tech news, tips, and tech questions for callers like you from around the country. Search it wherever you get the podcast. For your convenience, click the link below to get the most recent episode.

Podcast Picks: The Miracle Cure for PTSD and the Apple Watch

Your Apple Watch is more than an everyday accessory; it’s a partner in the fight against PTSD. In this special episode of “Kim Komando Today,” I explore NightWare, an app that turns your Apple Watch into a defense against PTSD-induced sleep disturbances.

man smiling at his smartphone

Man happily looking at his Android phone (Cyberguy.com)

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Listen to the podcast here Or wherever you get podcasts. Just search for my last name “Komando”.

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