I can’t remember the last time I opened Cydia and felt genuinely excited about a tweak or modification that had been uploaded to one of the repositories. The platform contains so many packages these days, with more and more being added or updated everyday that it sometimes becomes a bit of a chore to filter through the recent changes and actually find something worth downloading or purchasing. However, this does not apply to a recently submitted tweak from a developer known as K3A which adds a whole new dimension to incoming application notifications.
The tweak, know as SpeakEvents, supplies incoming device’s notifications with a voice, allowing the iDevice to not only display a text-based notification but also convey it back to the user through spoken words. The official website provides the following information about the tweak:
SpeakEvents will make your iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad speak! You will no longer need to manually check who is writing you a message. It’s a good companion to Siri, but Siri is not required.
We have seen previous tweaks on the Cydia store which offers the magic of spoken words, but most of these have been used to announce the caller ID of incoming phone calls and to the best of my knowledge, nothing else exists either officially or unofficially which will read out all incoming notifications for users. After installation, the tweak hooks into the native notification system and offers enhanced functionality without encroaching on the default behavior. Notifications can still be selected as normal through the Settings panel meaning that SpeakEvents in any way does not prohibit any native behavior.
The tweak also seems diverse in what it can do from a notification point of view. One of the main benefits to users is the fact that it can read out incoming text and iMessages as well received emails. This functionality is further enhanced by the fact that the message body of the email or text can be toggled on or off. The tweak is also intelligent enough to auto detect the language of the incoming message and use the relevant built-in language for reading it back. A number of languages are supported right away with more coming in future updates according to the developer.
The tweak seems even better for value for money when you consider that it also allows playback of most application notifications and comes with a comprehensive settings panel which allows:
- Applications to be chosen for speak events to occur.
- Whether or not the message body of incoming emails and text messages should be read.
- Whether or not the tweak should attempt to auto detect the incoming notification language.
- Whether to audibly announce device battery levels.
- Announce the time every hour, in similar fashion to how Mac OS X performs.
- Whether or not to respect the silent mode function.
SpeakEvents is available as a free of charge download from the BigBoss repository, but requires a license to be purchased from the settings application before it can be used. The license is available at a cost of $1.99 AUD.
You will obviously need to jailbreak your device to install this tweak. For jailbreaking iPhone 4S and iPad 2, you can simply follow our step by step guide posted here to jailbreak iOS 5.0.1 using Absinthe on Windows or Mac. For those of you with iPhone 4, 3GS, iPad 1, and iPod touches can use Redsn0w or Sn0wbreeze to untether jailbreak on iOS 5.0.1.
You may also like to check out: