ReachDeck information and help page

What is ReachDeck?

ReachDeck is a digital inclusion toolbar (from Texthelp). It used to be called Browsealoud.

ReachDeck provides speech, reading and translation support tools which can help make information on websites easier and more accessible for people.

Features include:

  • text-to-speech: click on or select any text to hear it read aloud
  • translation: written and spoken translations in multiple languages (translates text into 99 languages and can read aloud in 40 languages)
  • text magnification – enlarges text and reads it out loud
  • mp3 generation – converts selected text into an MP3 audio file
  • screen mask: blocks distractions on screen with a tinted mask
  • web page simplifier – removes clutter from the screen, displaying only the main text
  • settings: customize options to suit individual needs or preferences

How do I get ReachDeck?

To launch ReachDeck click on the dark orange box at the top left hand side of the page:

 

You will see a dark toolbar appear along the top of the page.

Example of this is shown here: 

There are several icons (images) on the toolbar. Each button does something different. If you click on the ? icon on the toolbar it will bring up a list of what each icon on the toolbar doe

 

How can I learn more about how to use ReachDeck?

If you would like to know a bit more about what each icon (image) on the toolbar does, please see below. 

 

 

How to get website text read aloud  

ReachDeck reads text on a webpage out loud. There are 2 options, ‘Hover to Speak’ (the first icon) and ‘Speak the Current Selection’ (the second icon).

Click on Hover to Speak then click at the beginning of text you want read aloud. The square button stops the speaking. 

If you prefer, you can press the second button then highlight the writing on the page that you want read aloud.

 

Translation  

ReachDeck can translate website pages into 99 languages and can speak aloud in 40 languages, in a high quality, natural sounding native voice.

Try it out for yourself…Click on the orange ‘speak’ button that you can see at the top of the website page.  This will launch the ReachDeck toolbar along the top of the page- which if you click on the icon  in the toolbar, it will allow you to select a language and will convert all the website into that language. If you want it to read that language out loud press the  icon.

Picture Dictionary 

This icon, will display pictures related to text that is selected on the page.

 

MP3 Generation   

ReachDeck converts any text that you select from a web page, into an audio file that you can then listen to at a later date at home, or on the move.

 

Screen Mask                    

This feature allows you to apply a colour filter to your screen.  A semi-opaque mask extends across the screen, leaving a letterbox reading window clear – this allows you to focus on a few lines at a time.

 

Text Magnification  

With ReachDeck you have the option to magnify the text (make it bigger) as it’s being read aloud.  You can personalise the font, size and colour to suit your needs by going to the settings icon (last icon on the toolbar).

 

Simplify  

This feature removes the clutter and distractions, such as pictures and adverts, allowing you to focus on the text you want to read.

 

Settings 

By clicking on the settings icon, it will take you to a settings menu. There you can personalise the features to suit your own needs.  You can personalise the following:

  • Highlight colours for text to speech and text magnification
  • Set text magnifier on as default
  • Select the size of the magnified text
  • Switch hover to speak off
  • Select voice speed
  • Set the simplify feature on as default
  • Identify links on a webpage  

Video that explains how to use ReachDeck

This video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9uxDRpISUI&t=4s introduces the toolbar, what each icon does and how to use it.