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Author Topic: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!  (Read 1078 times)

Shades

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Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« on: February 06, 2016, 12:11:38 AM »
Let me begin by saying I have a simple Lumia 520 smart phone (WP 8.1 Cyan). Till 2 hours ago I was very happy with the device. It does what it needs to do and does that well. Until 2 hours ago, that is.

After finally giving in on updating some apps and system software I noticed an an option called: Narrator.
Curiosity got hold of me and I activated it. Then I forgot about it and the phone went into energy saving mode.

Now I must add that some of the hardware buttons on the phone hardly work. Not a big deal, as their functionality is covered by on-screen buttons. To get my phone out of sleeping mode I just need to double-tap the screen on my phone and it activates, then I need to scroll up to access the functionality of the phone...a measure to prevent 'butt-dialing' and similar tricks smart phones put you through.

However, with Narrator activated, scrolling is disabled. Frustration levels start to rise very quickly. Actually I don't know of any other device that can instill so much rage in anyone in such a short amount of time.

After 45 minutes of trying to get this functionality go away by trying to be fast enough, using many(!) very(!!!) explicit terms I finally arrived at this tip: use the 'Start' button and volume up button to deactivate Narrator.

Great!...that is one of the broken buttons on my phone!

Then the tip: use Cortana to gain access to the Narrator settings and turn it off.

Even better!!...My hatred for Cortana has just been surpassed by my hatred for this phone at this point in time. So that functionality was disabled from the get-go!

So here I am, looking for a way to find the creator of Narrator and shove my phone through his/her throat with all the force I can muster. To make it more of a sport, I would shove it sideways!

Cooler heads prevail, so venting pressure resulted in quite some physical distance between my phone and me. Now I start looking for a solution to fix the buttons on my phone.

Guess what, I was not the only one with broken buttons and this Narrator problem. Fixing the buttons was actually very easy and cheap.
Although the 520 isn't the only phone with this problem, it appears to be the model that is affected most by a design flaw with the hardware buttons, which can cause micro-fractures that break the contact between the hardware board and the button(s).

You can fix this by removing all the covers from your Lumia phone. Cut a piece of plastic from any kind of thin package material (slightly curved) about 5 millimeters wide and 25 millimeters long. Cut as many as you need and slide one piece of plastic over the broken button. Do this firmly, but gently. Once you are in 5 millimeter to a centimeter in, the plastic hardly goes any further.

Start pressing the previously broken button and you'll notice it works again. The piece of plastic should push the button back down on the phone's main board, recreating the connection and its function.
Cut whatever piece of plastic still sticks out (without moving it, of course)and put back your cover(s). That's it.

I didn't believe it would work myself, but this Narrator mishap made me desperate for any solution. After fixing my buttons this way, the problem was solved quickly and painlessly.

Sure hope this will help anyone else faced with the vile piece of crap that is Narrator.

4wd

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2016, 01:11:10 AM »
Wow!  After that I just got to try it  ;D

Time to fire up the 530 and see what happens ... stay tuned ...

Ath

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2016, 03:57:51 AM »
I was trying to persuade myself into buying a cheap Win-phone, to compare the experience to my Android (personal) and iOs (work) phones, but this story increased the downside with another mile or so, so it'll take a lot of upside points to compensate again :o

Stoic Joker

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2016, 07:57:41 AM »
After finally giving in on updating some apps and system software I noticed an an option called: Narrator. Curiosity got hold of me and I activated it. Then I forgot about it and the phone went into energy saving mode.

So... In your many years of experience with Windows. You never once wandered across - or afoul of - the Win + U hotkey that sets off Narrator to present the Ease of Access features that have been around since Win2k? Ouch! Damn curiosity..

x16wda

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2016, 08:30:19 AM »
Capslock + Esc will turn it off on a PC that is driving you batty... wonder if you could do that on a bluetooth keyboard? I'm not sure the on screen keyboard would cooperate.
vi vi vi - editor of the beast

Stoic Joker

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2016, 08:56:53 AM »
I'm not sure the on screen keyboard would cooperate

Nope, it wont.

Shades

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2016, 10:16:45 AM »
After finally giving in on updating some apps and system software I noticed an an option called: Narrator. Curiosity got hold of me and I activated it. Then I forgot about it and the phone went into energy saving mode.

So... In your many years of experience with Windows. You never once wandered across - or afoul of - the Win + U hotkey that sets off Narrator to present the Ease of Access features that have been around since Win2k? Ouch! Damn curiosity..


No, I did not. The Narrator appears to be for people that have very poor to no vision. And there aren't many people that have such problems in my circles. The ones I do know are usually in their golden years and solve their vision issue(s) with glasses in one form or another. So no, I am not that familiar with hot-keys for functions that allow people with disabilities to work with Windows.

If it wasn't clear from my story...there wasn't even access to the on-screen keyboard. Besides headphones (the simple wired kind without microphone) and SD-card, I don't have a need for peripherals. So there wasn't  a blue-tooth keyboard either.

Connecting the phone to my PC only reveals a window where the status of the phone (battery level, messages, storage space) is shown. And the icons that allow direct access to the phone's storage, import pictures and manage media. It is rather simple in design, but very workable from the beginning. A far better experience than I have had with any Android phone or tablet or iPad. If there would be an option to write WhatsApp/Skype/SMS/MMS messages using this window, it would have been perfect. Writing messages with a proper keyboard...ah well, there must be room to dream, right? Unfortunately, the 'Project my Screen' project isn't working nicely with my Lumia 520, but it should with model 630 and up. And there is also it's spiritual successor, Continuum.

As I said, my needs for a smart phone are very basic. Too basic for me to justify buying the Lumia 950 and necessary devices to make the Continuum concept happen. Still, people that want to do all of their computing with their phone, I will never understand. Buying every kind of peripheral, play games, play movies etc. ...it is just a phone! No matter the size of its screen, it is too small to truly enjoy a movie or other form of media. Is this a problem of me being old-fashioned or not accepting sub-par computing/media just like the rest of the world seems to be so eager to do? I don't know.

Anyway, enough ranting for the day.

tomos

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2016, 11:02:34 AM »
I was trying to persuade myself into buying a cheap Win-phone, to compare the experience to my Android (personal) and iOs (work) phones, but this story increased the downside with another mile or so, so it'll take a lot of upside points to compensate again :o

Nothing so dramatic but I did find there were a few annoying aspects to Android (only have experience with 4.4 and haven't used it in a while).

Been using a Lumia 730 for almost two months, but at a very basic level.
Writing texts is hugely better with Win.8.1 -- the keyboard is much better; tbh I still dont fully understand how auto-correct works -- it seems to replace a word when it knows what you've written is incorrect, but it doesnt always; gives a great choice though for auto-correct.

It has no concept of back-up to SD, or save contacts to phone -- everything goes online (google or outlook). Using gmail I have yet to be able to search archived emails -- this not a big deal for me atm but may be important in the future, so I hope find a solution.
Tom

Stoic Joker

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2016, 02:34:15 PM »
Still, people that want to do all of their computing with their phone, I will never understand. Buying every kind of peripheral, play games, play movies etc. ...it is just a phone! No matter the size of its screen, it is too small to truly enjoy a movie or other form of media. Is this a problem of me being old-fashioned or not accepting sub-par computing/media just like the rest of the world seems to be so eager to do? I don't know.

Hm... I'll go with old fashioned, damned if I know, and me too. :D

tomos

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Re: Windows Phone Narrator should be punished!
« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2016, 02:52:28 PM »
Still, people that want to do all of their computing with their phone, I will never understand. Buying every kind of peripheral, play games, play movies etc. ...it is just a phone! No matter the size of its screen, it is too small to truly enjoy a movie or other form of media. Is this a problem of me being old-fashioned or not accepting sub-par computing/media just like the rest of the world seems to be so eager to do? I don't know.

Hm... I'll go with old fashioned, damned if I know, and me too. :D

I think that a movie for one, or two intimately, is fine on an average size smartphone these days.
Me though, I'm afraid of going there [edit] hang on a sec, I didnt mean the intimate bit [/edit] : I enjoy having a percentage of (awake) life that is relatively internet free. Why I enjoy keeping smartphone use to a minimum.
Tom
« Last Edit: February 06, 2016, 02:58:55 PM by tomos »