Scanning pens – What you should know before you buy

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    The ultimate guide to scanning pens — Everything you should know before you buy and more.

    Scanning pens – What you should know before you buy

    Scanning pens are handy tools for reading printed text. You’ll agree that reading is an important aspect of an individual’s life, from the early stages of childhood to older age.

    People struggle with reading for many reasons, and these devices are used to scan printed text which is read to the user through speakers or headphones. A scanning pen is especially helpful for individuals with visual impairment, learning disabilities such as dyslexia, or learning a new language.

    No matter the reason for having trouble reading, scanning pens make it possible to enjoy books or learn from printed textbooks without missing a single word.

    There are many options for scanning pens, and there are a few things you should know before buying one or looking for a potential upgrade.

    Scanning pens and how they help improve the learning experience for Dyslexics

    The primary function of scanning pens is to help those who have trouble reading. These devices use a small camera that scans printed text and transforms it into an audible sound. 

    The function of scanning pens allows people with impairment to read printed text easily. When the text is read loudly and clearly, people with various disabilities can use books for learning or entertainment.

    Most scanning pens feature English as the primary language, but different markets have the readerpen in other languages, such as Spanish. Users can adjust the reading speed, which is vital for those suffering from dyslexia to process information easier. 

    The features provided by this assistive technology help dyslexics improve their learning experience significantly by allowing audio playback.

    Pros of using scanning pens 

    Using a scanning pen has a lot of positive sides, as you can see when browsing websites such as www.scanningpens.com or watching webinars about the product. Whether you’re using it for reading English or Spanish, a c pen reader will assist you in many ways. 

    One of the most significant advantages of using scanning pens is that they’re discrete and portable. That means you can take your c-pen reader anywhere without using too much space. In short, they make reading convenient no matter where you are.

    Another benefit of using a scanning pen is that it helps with improving reading fluency. Learning a new language is difficult. However, this tool can make learning how to pronounce certain words much easier, especially if you’re learning a new language without a tutor.

    A scanning pen helps people with visual impairment or dyslexia, which is another benefit of using these assistive technologies. Scanning pens can make reading a more manageable and enjoyable experience for people who struggle with reading for any reason. Today’s scanning pens are much more accurate than before, recognizing up to 99% of written words. 

    Lastly, using a scanning pen reduces strain on the eyes. An exam reader is a great tool for those who read a lot or have reading difficulties. Excessive reading can easily lead to eye strain, which can, in turn, cause the need to wear glasses. Even then, reading a few hours a day can cause issues. With a high-quality exam reader, one can easily swipe through chunks of text, listening to the printed words through earphones or speakers. Simply ensure the pen has been charged using its USB cable prior to long scanning sessions.

    Cons of using scanning pens 

    No matter how much technology has improved in the last couple of years, there’s still much room for improvement. Some of the things that can be considered as cons of using scanning pens include issues with specific types of fonts and the fact that using this type of assistive technology requires a steady right hand and strong motor skills. 

    Not every printed text is made with the same font, and certain scanning pens might have issues recognizing specific words or signs. The only way to avoid this issue is by using books with simple and clear fonts.

    When using a scanning pen, it’s essential to swipe through the entire paragraph, which requires a steady hand. For some people, keeping their hands as steady as these devices require is extremely difficult.

    Lastly, the price of some of these devices can be pretty high, depending on the features and options it offers. 

    Most recommended reader pens

    Today, there are countless options when it comes to scanning pens. It can be challenging to make the right choice for someone just starting to look into these assistive technologies. That is why we’ll list a few of the most recommended reader pens on the market. You can easily find these on Amazon or similar websites.

    Scanmarker Air Pen Scanner

    The Scanmarker Air Pen Scanner is more than just an exam reader. This scanning pen offers a range of useful features, such as scanning up to 3000 characters per minute text to speech, and translating over 40 languages, including English, Spanish, and many more.

    Using built-in Bluetooth, this device will allow you to scan the text and send it to your chosen device. Aside from being a beneficial device for those with dyslexia and visual impairment, this device is extremely helpful for learners who like taking notes digitally instead of using a traditional highlighter.

    WorldPenScan X

    The WorldPenScan from PenPower is a powerful device that scans, reads, and translates printed text in real time. The great thing about this text reader is that it can scan an entire line of text in a second and is ideal for students and professionals. 

    WorldPenScan X recognizes languages such as French, Spanish, Japanese, and others. Aside from helping students and professionals, this device is also used as an aid by dyslexics and visually impaired individuals as it can read aloud the scanned text in real time.

    PenPower WorldPen Scan Go

    The PenPower WorldPen Scan Go is a great device used not only for scanning printed or digital texts but also for transcribing. It can also scan and translate text written in 50 different languages, and many use it as a voice recorder, among other things.

    This reading pen is compact, elegant, and an excellent investment whether you need it for work or as an aid in learning or reading. It’s 98% accurate and can scan text from printed media, screens, labels, and more. It also offers a text to speech function, which is essential for people with visual impairment, dyslexics, and students. It’s compatible with 112 languages. 

    Birgus Reader Pen

    The Brigus Reader Pen is among the top-rated scanning pens on the market. It’s 98% accurate and can scan text from printed media, screens, labels, and more. Much like the PenPower WorldPen Scan Go, the Birgus Reader pen is also compatible with 112 languages, making it a go-to option for dyslexics, students, and those with visual impairments.

    More assistive technology to help with reading disabilities

    Aside from scanning pens, there are other assistive technologies that help people with reading disabilities. These include text to speech software, screen readers, speech recognition software, magnification software, and Braille displays.

    Text to speech software does the same thing as scanning pens. However, text to speech software can be easily used straight from your laptop, and certain apps like Speechify work with both digital and physical text. On the other hand, screen readers only read text that’s visible on the screen, although still helpful for those with visual impairments when they wish to use a PC or laptop. Magnification software and Braille displays are pretty self-explanatory.

    Let’s explore the top text to speech software options.

    Speechify’s TTS 

    When it comes to text to speech software, Speechify is one of the leading providers of this service. The reason why it’s worth using Speechify is that it offers a wide range of features that help individuals with visual impairments and dyslexia read written materials. 

    Speechify’s text to speech platform features include customizable reading speed, a user-friendly interface, several voice options, support for several languages, and availability across multiple platforms such as Windows, mac, or android devices. Additionally, Speechify has more humanlike narrators than most other text to speech platforms.

    NaturalReader

    NaturalReader is a text to speech software used for personal, educational, and commercial use. It’s compatible with a large number of text formats, including Word documents, PDFs, and much more.

    Although it has a limited number of languages it’s compatible with, it provides basic features that help visually impaired individuals, students, and professionals go over written text more quickly and more easily.

    eSpeak

    eSpeak is open-source text to speech software that provides basic features. Aside from text to speech, another OCR feature of eSpeak is spell checking which can come in handy, especially if the original text is written incorrectly. The best feature of eSpeak is that it’s free and open-source.

    FAQ

    Do scanning pens work?

    When scanning pens became available on the market, their functionality left much to be desired. As the technology evolved, these devices became much more sophisticated and elegant. An ordinary c-pen reader pen can assist someone in seconds with almost perfect accuracy in a wide range of languages.

    Are scanning pens worth it?

    Whether or not scanning pens are worth it depends on the user and how much value this device can provide. When it comes to people with visual impairment, these pens can significantly increase their living standards, making them an essential tool. When it comes to students and professionals, a scanning pen can also provide great value, but it depends on the features it provides.

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman is a dyslexia advocate and the CEO and founder of Speechify, the #1 text-to-speech app in the world, totaling over 100,000 5-star reviews and ranking first place in the App Store for the News & Magazines category. In 2017, Weitzman was named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list for his work making the internet more accessible to people with learning disabilities. Cliff Weitzman has been featured in EdSurge, Inc., PC Mag, Entrepreneur, Mashable, among other leading outlets.

    Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify

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