Kurzweil and Read & Write are popular assistive technologies with versatile apps fit for many users. The following breakdown will give you insight into what each app does best and how they differ.
Studying doesn’t come easy to everyone, especially students with various learning or reading disabilities. Fortunately, assistive technologies have evolved to the point where they can significantly improve people’s studying experience.
Kurzweil and Read & Write are popular assistive technologies with versatile apps fit for many users. The following breakdown will give you insight into what each app does best and how they differ. The best assistive tool might not be the one you expected.
What is Kurzweil 3000?
Kurzweil 3000 is a tool that can help students with dyslexia, dysgraphia and other reading difficulties. It uses OCR technology to transform digital text from physical documents into audio files with accurate narration. It works for students who seek audio in English and many other languages.
The software enables college students to read and listen to digital text simultaneously and access a wide range of file formats. Users have the option to use Kurzweil 3000 online and offline. Therefore, their studying isn’t dependent on an internet connection. It even offers some compatibility with Dragon Naturally Speaking speech recognition software.
What is Read & Write?
Read & Write is a Texthelp-developed alternative assistive technology and special education support tool for users of different age groups. It can help the listener understand unfamiliar words, improve the user’s vocabulary, proofread original work and study from various digital materials.
The software offers multiplatform and multilingual support. It caters to a large audience and can benefit teachers as much as students. Programs similarly designed with students in mind include Bookshare, which offers a braille display for books, among other features.
Kurzweil 3000 vs. Read & Write – A comparison
Kurzweil 3000 is an app that focuses on organizational writing and provides users with specialized templates. You can benefit from text to speech and speech-to-text and configure the software to do graphic organizers such as mind mapping with a few simple clicks on the toolbar.
Both apps have good word prediction integration, but only Read & Write has full writing support for Microsoft Word and Google Docs. The additional formatting options in the word processor can be valuable to students working on papers.
If you want to open a file, you can do it directly in the Kurzweil 3000 app. Logging won’t cause you to lose track of your progress, and document navigation is intuitive. Tutorials are available with more information.
Texthelp Read & Write has a PDF reader that can open documents from local and cloud storage. Both apps have built-in dictionaries for efficient processing and bookmarks and offer text highlighting so you can annotate text and take notes. Think of these as sticky notes for your virtual library.
Because it’s essential to have access to hard copy text in a digital format, Kurzweil and Read & Write developers integrated OCR technology. This feature enables the scanning of documents directly into the apps and the reading of text from images.
This can be a useful functionality for reading illustrations and technical textbooks.
Kurzweil 3000 and Read & Write come with desktop apps for Windows and Mac computers. However, the range of features these apps offer differs greatly.
For example, Kurzweil has a limited browser platform with many missing features compared to its mobile app version.
In contrast, Read & Write offers full functionality on every platform with one caveat: Users must install several browser plugins to unlock the app’s full potential. Its mobile versions don’t need additional plugins and tools.
Aside from interface differences, there are a few other ways these platforms differ. For instance, Kurzweil 3000 uses a specialized dyslexia font, while Read & Write lacks this feature.
Read & Write has integrated math tools and a text summarization feature, whereas Kurzweil 3000 doesn’t. The latter compensates by including an integrated content-sharing function and One Drive cloud storage.
It’s also worth noting that Kurzweil comes with word magnification. This makes a massive difference for people with various forms of visual impairment and can improve their spelling skills.
Perhaps the most significant difference lies in platform compatibility.
Read & Write works on any platform and comes with dedicated apps for Android, iPad, Windows, macOS, etc. Kurzweil 3000 has great iOS support but lacks a specialized Android app. Users without iPhones and iPads must use a mobile browser to benefit from Kurzweil 3000, which isn’t ideal.
Kurzweil doesn’t have a limit.
Try Speechify – The text to speech platform that does it all
Although Kurzweil 3000 and Read & Write are capable solutions for learners with disabilities, there is a better alternative. Speechify is a text to speech document and screen reader capable of high-quality dictation from HTML, Word, PDF, web pages, screenshots, epubs, PowerPoint presentations and other digital text files.
The app is available as a Chrome extension, has an Apple-friendly version, and works on Android and desktop devices. When it comes to software programs that can improve reading comprehension through different reading strategies, Speechify delivers.
Its adaptive AI voice generator helps users with low vision, high school students, college students and even youth. It offers one of the best OCR integrations, seamless navigation on all mobile devices, and MP3 and WAV file conversions and download options.
If you want a more affordable alternative to enhance your studying and sharpen your language comprehension skills, try Speechify today. You’ll notice improvements rapidly.
What is the difference between Kurzweil 1000 and Kurzweil 3000?
Kurzweil 3000 has more features that help users with reading disabilities such as definitions, word tracking and notetaking. Kurzweil 1000 has multiple app integrations and functions designed for visually impaired users.
How much does Kurzweil cost?
The Kurzweil 3000 literacy support software costs $1,065 for a single license. Group deals of 30+ and 50+ licenses offer significant discounts.
How much does Read & Write cost?
Read&Write Gold costs $99 per year per student subscription. Teachers can use the app for free.
Yes (Android & iOS)
Yes (40+ languages)
Number of Voices
Take a Photo and Read
Cross device syncing to continue
reading where you left off
Textbook photo support
DSA availability in the UK
Advanced natural sounding AI voices
Exporting notes from documents