Vision Gadgets: Share What You Use

By: tel-editors. Updated: November 11, 2020.

Do you use any vision gadgets — like magnifiers, special lighting, or apps that help see things in various situations?

The Longevity Explorers are exploring vision gadgets. We are interested in the inputs of the broader Tech-enhanced Life community too.

Share what you use. Join the discussion.


Add Your Vision Gadget Opinions

Are you interested in magnifiers, apps for seeing better, task lighting, or other vision  gadgets?

If so, tell us about what you use, and how you have found it. Add your inputs as a comment below.


We plan to synthesize your inputs, and what our explorers are learning — to create something to help others in a similar situation.






from Barbara Whittaker (unverified) at September 15, 2020

I find it very helpful to use "Ott Lite" when doing any close work - reading, machine sewing and especially hand sewing.


from Barbara Patterson (unverified) at September 15, 2020

I use an iPhone and downloaded an app called 'Glasses' that does a great job of magnifying anything.


from Mindy Renfro (member) at September 15, 2020

 I often use my apple phone camera to take a picture and then blow it up to read small print or check what is stamped on pills to identify them properly. 


from Emily Canter (unverified) at September 15, 2020

Develop magnification app as regular part of camera setting AS WELL AS with separate, clearly understood app & icon. App should have large, clear “buttons” with different automated magnification levels along with ability to enlarge to any size by spreading fingers.

Should also have option for lighted magnification using flashlight app at time as enlargement app to further illuminate subject if needed.


from Nadine Lada (unverified) at September 15, 2020

I use a classic-style magnifying glass for small print on medication and any directions.
I occasionally adjust the font size on my Kindle.
I use task lighting when called for.
My apartment walls are all white.
I turn on all the lights when it's a cloudy day.


from J. R. Klau (unverified) at September 15, 2020

I find all of the previous comments helpful. I keep glasses with a 1.50 magnification in several places around my apartment, but they never seem to be where I want them, and for pill bottles and directions on microwaveable food, only a strong magnifying glass will do.


from Roberta Choma (unverified) at September 15, 2020

I like this Easy purse magnifier.


from Bruce O'Connor (member) at September 16, 2020

I have to have help in almost all situations. I use: high optic-quality magnifying glasses and prescription reading glasses situated at various place around our home, workshop, and vehicle; the "Flashlight" app on my iPhone, various small LED flashlights and headlamps similarly situated; the Pocket Glasses on my iPhone and iPad; various accessibility settings on my iPhone, iPad and MacBook Pro computers, and a second high definition 24" monitor connected to my MacBook, to better see screens; and task lighting wherever I read. And, I guess a lot.


from Lenora Kirby (unverified) at September 16, 2020

I purchased a clear acrylic magnifying ruler from "Mighty Bright" on Amazon. it has measuring scales on either edge but ALSO has a red line in the center.
I find it very helpful to use the red line down the page when reading or reconciling bills, etc - to keep entire line straight and not skip or get confused. NOT "high tech" at all, but I love it!

You can see it here on Amazon.


from John Kanagy (unverified) at September 16, 2020

I’ve found my iPhone camera very useful for magnification and it is usually with me. On the SE model one has to touch 2 fingers on the screen and spread the fingers as you do to enlarge text to get the magnification. You can then take a photo or not. Some devices require you to first turn on this feature in “Settings”, under Accessibility.


from Marian (unverified) at September 21, 2020

In restaurants in order to read the menu I use the flashlight on my iphone. I have also used the magnifier on the iphone. With the new ios 14 update I can now double tap the back of my phone and the magnifier comes up instantly. I also use an Android tablet for reading my ebooks. I really like that you can easily adjust the font size as needed.


from BasketCase24 (member) at September 21, 2020

My wife does lots of fiber arts activities, some of which require great light and some require magnification. She has a lighted magnifying glass that is on a heavy stand which can be locked into position above your lap or whatever, from Daylight corporation. I mostly use it for removing splinters, and it works great! She also has an Ott-lite for more natural lighting. We both use our iPhones occasionally for magnifying things, or taking photos and enlarging them to read small or hidden print.


from Peter Reque (unverified) at September 21, 2020

I have magnifying glasses scattered around for the fine print of instructions on so many packages. They also help with low contrast printing.


from Julie Freestone (unverified) at September 21, 2020

I find if I turn on the light over the stove and use a magnifying glass, I can sometimes read the TINY print on medication and instruction manuals. And of course the ability to enlarge the font on the Kindle and have back lighting make it possible for me to read the newspaper and books.


from Linda Hoffman  (unverified) at September 21, 2020

I have macular degeneration and wear glasses for up close work. Use a hand magnifier. Use my iPad and can made letters large enough to comfortably read. Need good light to read and eyes tire easily.
I understand that a reader Zoom 12 is portable and magnifies up to 3x. I have not seen it but my local low vision chapter will have a show and use the next time we can all meet together.


from Leni Silberman (unverified) at September 21, 2020

I have found that while many web pages will allow you to ramp up the font size, others will not. On my iPad, if I encounter a page that will not allow me to enlarge it, I copy it from my default browser, Chrome, and paste it into Safari. Suddenly the same page let’s me enlarge the font. I get The NY Times electronically, because they provide a few font-size settings, but the biggest isn’t big enough for me. So, I copy the article’s title, search for it in Safari, and read it there. Has anyone investigated this more?


from Warren Dear (unverified) at September 21, 2020

I wanted to mention the App BeMyEyes, which connects a visually impaired person and a sighted person who can see things for them. This article on their website talks about the different things the App can do for people: 100 Ways to Use Be My Eyes


from Pete Kopcsak (unverified) at September 21, 2020

I use my iPhone magnifier that comes up if I triple click the home button and I activated bold text on my iPhone that makes it more readable in sunlight and at night. At my desk, I have a lighted two lens iMagnify to read small print medicine labels. In my bathroom is a battery operated LED make up mirror with plain mirror on one side and 10X on the other side so I can see my face clearly. I have small LED lights (like E2D Executive Defender) at many places around our apartment so I can light up the thermostats, light up the back of the TV for cable hook ups, etc. I find that the high intensity lights help a great deal in seeing more clearly. I use the Command+ buttons on my keyboard to enlarge many documents I want to read online. I have nightlights in many electrical outlets so we can walk around the apartment at night without turning on lights. On our concrete stairs we have thin white lines painted n the edge of each step so they really stand out when walking down the steps in low light conditions. I use the light on my iPhone a lot. I tired yellow glass lenses as a test when driving at night and did not find them helpful.


from Robin Hall (unverified) at September 22, 2020

I use 3.5 strength reading glasses but recent,y have found they are not enough so I also use a magnifying glass and intend to buy stronger glasses.


from Edna Shochat (unverified) at September 22, 2020

Mag. Light – the free app combining the iPhone's camera with the flashlight is a most useful tools. Edna Shochat.


from Marty H. (unverified) at September 24, 2020

I had to assemble a grocery cart from Home depot and the instructions were minute. I enlarged them in my printer copier 250% and printed out instructions I could use. Usually i just use a magnifying glass around the house and a pocket flashlight for menus in the darkest restaurants.


from SongOfRuth (member) at December 02, 2020

I use drugstore glasses as general reading glasses. For tiny print, I just pop on a second pair. ;)

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