“I have a relative who has trouble reading print. We’ve borrowed Playaways from the library; I would like to find something for her so we can download audiobooks from CLEVNET. “The Newton Falls Public Library staff discussed it further with the patron and discovered the newer touch screen MP3 players are not an option as the screen can be difficult to read. The patron actually needs something that works with buttons.
The staff offered the option of the free Talking Books program through the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. After the application is completed and approved, qualified users are supplied a Digital Talking Book player which plays audio versions of books and magazines. Materials are sent directly to the patron and there is no postage fee for returning the items.
Our patron still wanted to know if there was something that would fit her need and could be used to download from the library’s collection. Searching online, the staff found a couple of items for the patron’s consideration. One response to a similar question was found at answers.yahoo.com. “If you are looking for something with no screen, the previous generation of the iPod Shuffle would be a really good choice, particularly if you are visually impaired. All the buttons are on the front in a simple arrangement and it has a built-in clip . . . There is also the Creative Zen Stone which is a small screenless player that just plays music, like the Shuffle. It has a similarly simple button arrangement on the front of the player as well . . . You may also want to check out the Samsung S2 Pebble . . . or the Sony B series.”