Googles Reading Mode App For Android Can Save You From The Worst Of Web Design

Googles Reading Mode App For Android Can Save You From The Worst Of Web Design
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The Google Reading Mode app for Android can save you from bad web design

The Google Reading Mode app for Android can save you from bad web design


A relatively new accessibility feature makes it easier to read content on websites full of pop-ups, notifications, auto-play videos and ads.

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Wow, readable site on your phone! Who knew this was possible?
Wow, readable site on your phone! Who knew this was possible?
Photo by Dan Seifert/The Verge

We've all experienced this. someone just sent us a link to an interesting article on our social media or group chat, but when we click on that link and it opens in our phone's browser, it's almost impossible to read because there are so many ads. Popups, "chat us" jingles, and other annoying pranks. Most of the time I just give up and close the browser without knowing what the issue is.

But since I have the Google Reading Mode app installed on my Android, I can quickly bypass all that nonsense by swiping with two fingers and reading what I just clicked on the link.

Released late last year, Reader Mode is designed as an accessibility feature that makes it easier for visually impaired people to read content on their phone. You can adjust the font, font size, colors and spacing to optimize the appearance of the text. It can also use Google text-to-speech transcription to read content aloud, allowing you to switch between different voices and adjust the speed. Best of all, unlike the Reader Mode built into some browsers, the Reader Mode app works with almost anything your phone displays, whether it's in Chrome, the app browser, or the app itself.

Turn this unreadable mess into this. Unfortunately, it cannot turn bad results into good ones.

Of course, like many accessibility features, Reader Mode can benefit anyone who uses their phone for reading, which I suspect is everyone with a phone. It removes all non-text elements – images, links, ads, pop-ups, videos, etc. – and presents only text in the modal tab, making it easier to see and use. It also shows how long it takes to read a particular article. Enabling Reader Mode also disables notifications and other system pop-ups, so you can take a quick break from the distraction of your phone to read what you're reading.

(I'm sure some of you are loudly saying that you hate the design of The Verge and use things like this to make it readable. I say yes, please go ahead if it works. That makes it easier for us. you read it. It doesn't bother me at all :)

Before I found this app, I sent almost every link I found on my phone to a read-later service like Pocket, which converted the content into human-readable form. But then I had to remember to go back there first so I could read what I wanted to read. It's not a complete replacement for those types of services, but for short articles that I need to read later and can read right away, it's great. It can also make things like recipes easier to read on my phone because I get to the point of the content.

After installation, there are several ways to enable reader mode. However, I prefer the two-finger swipe from the bottom of the screen, which works reliably and doesn't require a floating virtual button to be visible all the time. To set everything up.

  • Download the Reading Mode app from the Google Play Store. Compatible with Android 9 or newer, it should cover most devices in use today. You can use it with content in English, French, Spanish or Italian.
  • After installing and opening the app, it will guide you to set it up on your phone. You'll be taken to your device's accessibility settings, where you'll need to accept a request for the app to display what's on your device's screen.
  • By default, reading mode is activated by a virtual button that is always on your screen. Click on it and the application will be activated. You can also boot by holding both volume buttons. If you click the More options link under Shortcuts options, you can change the virtual button to a two-finger swipe gesture from the bottom of the screen to activate it.
  • If this is your first time using Reading View, you'll be familiar with its features and settings. Clicking the gear in the lower left corner brings up options to customize the text and sound, while the button in the lower right corner gives you quick access to adjusting the font size. Click the middle play button to activate audio playback. Tap the Reading View bar or swipe up and down. It will disappear and show the content that was underneath.

And that's basically it. now you have a systemic way to improve the readability of your phone.

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