Phone & tablet screens
Magnify websites, use colour-blindness filters and increase font size
Zoom anything on a website
The pinch-to-zoom magnifying gesture is widely used, but it doesn’t work all the time. You can’t, for example, pinch to zoom phone and tablet home screens, while many ‘mobile’ websites disable this feature. But there are hidden tricks that’ll let you zoom anything, anywhere.
In IOS, open Settings, then tap General, followed by Accessibility. Tap Zoom, then tap the switch to On. From now on, using three fingers to double-tap the screen will zoom into anything, including your device’s home page and any website. To move around the magnified image, tap, hold and drag with three fingers. To change the zoom level, double-tap then drag up or down.
In Android, open Settings, tap Accessibility, followed by ‘Magnification gestures’, then switch the setting on. You’ll now be able to zoom with a singlefigure triple-tap. Adjust the zoom level with a standard two-finger pinch gesture, or pan the view by dragging two fingers.
On Kindle Fire tablets, swipe down from the top, tap Settings, Accessibility, then switch Screen Magnifier to On (see screenshot below left). The gestures are the same as on an Android device.
Disable ‘adaptive brightness’
Do you sometimes feel your screen is brighter or dimmer than you’d like? This is down to the adaptive-brightness feature, which uses the device’s ambientlight sensor to automatically set the ‘ideal’ brightness level. Great in theory, but all too often very unreliable.
To disable it on an ipad or iphone, open Settings, tap ‘Display & Brightness’ then switch Auto-brightness off. In Android Settings, tap Display then switch off ‘Adaptive brightness’.
Set the screen for your particular colour blindness
Millions of people see screen colours differently because they have a colourvision deficiency – commonly known as colour blindness. Colour filters can help you distinguish colours if you suffer from this condition.
In IOS, tap Settings, Accessibility, then Display Accommodations. Next, tap Colour Filters, tap the switch to On, then below that tap the type of colour blindness that’s relevant to you. For example, choose Protanopia if you struggle to distinguish blue or red from green (see screenshot below).
In Android, tap Settings, Accessibility, then scroll to the bottom and tap ‘Colour correction’. Switch it to On, then tap ‘Correction mode’, followed by the relevant filter.
Make screen fonts bigger
If you’re struggling to read what’s on your screen, you can increase the size of the font used in IOS and Android. In IOS, tap Settings, Accessibility, then Larger Text. Drag the slider to increase the font size. If you need to go larger still, extend the slider by switching Larger Accessibility Sizes to On. On Android devices, tap Settings, Display, ‘Font size’, then tap to choose a larger size. If you have a Kindle Fire, swipe down from the top of the screen, tap Settings followed by ‘Display & Sounds’, then tap the plus (‘+’) button next to Font Size.