Tutorial of Envision AI App

January 22, 2021


Envision is an app that can extract visual information from your surroundings and convert it to meaningful audio output. The functions of Envision are categorised into three tabs: Text, General and Scan & Find.

Text Recognition

All the current and future text recognition functions will be found under this tab that can be always accessed easily. Within this tab you will find the following functions:

Read Text Instantly

Tap the button and Envision will instantly read out any short text you’re pointing the camera at. Tap the button once again for Envision to stop reading.

If you intend to only read Dutch or other latin-based languages, you can turn on Offline Text Recognition from the Setting to make it even faster.

Envision can also automatically detect languages. If you tend to come across text in multiple languages in your everyday life, we recommend turning Automatic Language Detection on. If you mostly only read one language, its best if you keep it off.

Read Documents

Tap the button to activate the feature. Envision will provide audio guidance to adjust the document. It will then automatically capture a photo when all edges are visible. You can also manually take a picture by tapping in the middle of the screen. The recognised text appears on a new screen allowing you to:

• Navigate through the text using VoiceOver commands.

• Read the document by tapping the play button.

•  Share the document by tapping the share button.

• Adjust the font size tapping the font button.


Tap the button for more options like Read Multiple Pages, Import PDF or Import Image.

Read Multiple Pages

On tapping this option, you may scan multiple pages with the help of edge detection.

Import PDF

You can now import PDF right from within the app itself. Tapping on this option opens the Files app on your phone and allows you to import PDFs from there.

Import Image

Now, you can tap on Import Image option and directly select the image you want to read via Envision.

Envision Library

Envision Library allows you to save any document you would like to keep. Whether it is to just have all your documents in in one place, or because you want to read it at a later time. All you need to do is open your Library and you’ll find all your documents right there.


This function allows users with low vision to zoom into pieces of text they want to read.

This can be activated by simply using pinch and zoom on the screen or by pressing the magnifier icon on the top left corner. You can use any of the text recognition functions along with this mode. There is also an option to invert colours if you want to read texts with a higher contrast.

General Recognition

All functions that does not involve recognising text can be found under this tab. Currently, this tab offers the following functions:

Describe Scene

Tap the button to capture a photo you want to be described. Envision will speak out the most probable description for it. If you have already taught Envision faces of your friends and family, they will be included in the description.

Envision also provides description based on the scene. When you take a photo of a watch, it tell you the time and when you take a picture of a window, it tells you the current weather.

You can save these images in your camera roll with their descriptions, which can be accessed with VoiceOver.

Detect Color

Tap the button and point the camera at the object or clothing you wish to recognise the color of. Envision will immediately start speaking out the color it sees. Tap the button again for Envision to stop recognising colors. 

In the settings, you can select whether you want Envision to recognise just the standard 30 colors or the much more descriptive 950 colors.

Scan Barcode

Tap the button and point the camera at the product you want to recognise. Slowly move or rotate the product until you hear a beeping sound which means a barcode has been detected. Use the frequency of the beeping sound to bring the barcode in focus. You will hear a successful ‘ting’ once the barcode has been successfully scanned.

You will then hear the product’s name. You can also learn more about the product by tapping ‘More Information’.

Scan & Find

This tab helps you to use the real time recognition of the app to find people and objects around you. You will see the following options in this page:

Find People

Tap the button and scan your surroundings in real time. You will hear a beep sound and sense a mild vibration when Envision encounters/ recognizes a person in the frame. Envision will speak out the name of a face if you have trained, whenever that appears in the frame. You can use this function to look for a friend in a cafe or a social gathering.

Find Objects

Tap the button and select the object you want to find from a compiled list of objects. Now scan your surroundings in real time. You will hear a beep sound and sense a mild vibration when Envision encounters/ recognizes the chosen object in the frame. You can also star your favourite or most frequently searched for objects and add objects to the list by tapping on, 'Missing Something? Let Us Know.' at the bottom.

Teach Envision

Envision allows you to teach faces to the app that can later be recognised through the Describe Scene function.

Tap on the Teach Envision button, this will take you to a screen where you can start taking photos. By default, the back camera of the phone is active, but this could be changed within the screen if you are intending to take a selfie. In the 'Teach a face' option, the camera will also provide a guide to help you position your face properly.

You are required to capture at least 5 photos, but we recommend taking around 10 photos for the recognition to be more accurate. Also, it helps if you take these photos from different angles and with different backgrounds. After clicking the photos, press Done. You will be prompted to enter the name of the person. Once you do that, Envision will start teaching itself, which takes a few seconds. Once the teaching is successful you will be taken back to the Scan & Find tab.

Within the Teach Envision screen, you also have the option to Open Library. All the faces that you have trained will be displayed here. You have the option to delete any of the faces  you no longer want Envision to recognise.

Recognise Images in other Apps

Envision can also be used to read and recognise images you come across in other apps like Photos, Twitter, WhatsApp, etc. This can be done by simply pressing the "Share" button from within that app and selecting the option "Envision it" from the list of actions that show up on the action sheet.

For the first time, you will have to enable this option by tapping on the "More" option in the bottom right corner of the share sheet and adding Envision It to the actions.


Envision is a constantly evolving app and we keep on improving its functions and capabilities. So make sure you either have your automatic updates on or check for new updates on a weekly basis. We will list a number of more tips here that we have crowdsourced from our users that may improve your experience of using Envision optimally:

  • A lot Envision's feature still depend on the internet. Though we have made sure that the processing happens lightening fast, having a decent internet connection helps. We never ever store any image or information that you capture.
  • If you have any feedback for Envision, you can share it from within the 'Give Feedback option in the Settings tab. If you need any help or clarifications you can also request a call from the Settings tab and we will call you back to help you out at the earliest.
  • For all text recognition features, Envision automatically detects the language of the text by default and reads it out. However, if you mostly only encounter text in one language and don't want Envision to get confused, you can turn the Automatic Language Detection off in the Speech Setting within the app itself.
  • Within the Speech Settings, you can also adjust the speaking rate and the voice of all non-VoiceOver speech within the app. These changes do not affect the VoiceOver settings.