Vhista App Review

Note: This app was reviewed in tandem with two other scanner apps TapTapSee, and Seeing AI.

Vhista is a scanner app for the blind and visually impaired developed by Juan David Cruz Serrano for the IOS app store , and Google Play store.

The first major issue I had was that a lot of times the camera doesn’t detect that there’s an object in front of it. This issue seems to be caused primarily by tabbing out of the app and then tabbing back in without restarting the app. While restarting the app seemed to help a little bit the detection was still pretty hit or miss.

Vhista’s biggest flaw is easily the detailed image scan which you activate by tapping the screen. Instead of actually telling you what the object is the app just spouts a bunch of guesses and hopes something lands. For example I scanned my dog (the Bulldog from previous reviews) and the app just gave me a list of dog breeds. While the first breed it guessed was the correct one, this method of object detection is more likely to cause confusion for those who are blind.

The active camera mode doesn’t fare much better. Almost every object the app managed to detect was incorrect. For example the app thought a trash can was a toilet, and that a light switch was a paper towel. While the app got both right upon scanning again, it’s probably enough for most to find a different app.


  • Voice over support
  • Subscription is only 50 cents a month


  • Does not show text for detailed scans
  • Most objects were incorrectly narrated
  • Does not do well with large print enabled
  • Requires a subscription

Conclusion: Vhista is a below average scanner app. Almost every object I scanned was incorrect and worse yet is the fact that the app didn’t detect a lot of the objects I tried to scan. If you’re looking for a proper scanner app you’re better off looking elsewhere.


Microsoft’s Seeing AI App Review

Note: this app was reviewed in tandem with two other scanner apps TapTapSee, and Vhista.

Seeing AI is a scanner app for the visually impaired developed by Microsoft for the IOS app store. The app uses an AI to narrate the world to mixed results.  The app includes nine scanner modes Short Text, Handwriting, Document, Product (bar-code), Person, Currency, Scene, Color, and Light scan.

First up is short text and handwriting. While it can recognize text semi-accurately it reads it in a random order making it an unusable mess. I tried scanning the cover of my copy of A Game Of Thrones because the text is in bold print which I thought would make it easier on the app. It ended up reading it as Martin Thrones R. R.

The handwriting mode works a little differently than short text mode. Instead of the text to speech continuously spewing word vomit, the app scans it into text which you can either read yourself if you have residual vision or have the text to speech read it to you if you’re full blind. I scanned handwriting three times and two out o the three times it was correct.

The document scan was a little more accurate than short text but was still pretty hit or miss. I scanned around three documents and only one was scanned with no typos. The other two times the words were either wrong or missing entirely. So if you need to have a document read to you I would look elsewhere.

The feature I found most useful was easily the product scanner. Each time I scanned a bar code it was able to correctly determine the product name. The only issue I could find with it is that people who are fully blind may have trouble scanning a bar code. The app is supposed to beep when a bar code is close but every time I scanned a product it failed to do so.

The person scan feature worked well enough. I scanned myself multiple times and each time the app got most of my facial details and expression right. My only issue with this feature is that it tries to predict age but ended up getting my age wrong (by about a decade) every time I scanned myself (about six times).  

The currency scan feature was surprisingly accurate, every time I scanned a bill it was able to accurately tell what the amount was. The only complaint I had was that it does not scan coins.

The biggest problem I had with Seeing AI was the general scan function or scene scan as it’s called in app . Almost every object I scanned was incorrect. So if you’re downloading Seeing AI for the general scan function don’t, there are much better apps out there such as TapTapSee.

Scene Scanner Accuracy Results:

Photo: Kingdom Hearts 3 PS4 Case

Object Subtitle: It seems to be screenshot, poster, cartoon, book, pc game, action-adventure game, action film, digital compositing, clothing, strategy video game

Accuracy: Wrong

Photo: Red Dead Redemption 2 PS4 Case

Object Subtitle: Probably a close up of a book

Accuracy: Wrong

Photo: Blade Runner 2049 Blu-ray Case

Object Subtitle: It seems to be poster, screenshot, vehicle, car, land vehicle, person, man, human face

Accuracy: Wrong

Photo: A Game Of Thrones By George R. R. Martin

Object Subtitle: Probably a close up of a sign

Accuracy: Wrong

Photo: Tazo Iced Green Tea Bottle

Object Subtitle: Probably an empty bottle sitting on a table

Accuracy:  Fairly Correct

Photo: Sun-Maid Organic Raisin Pack

Object Subtitle: It seems to be food, snack, dessert, baked goods, confectionery

Accuracy: Wrong

Photo: Red and White Cane for the Blind

Object Subtitle: it seems to be bicycle, bicycle wheel, indoor, toothbrush, stationary, writing implement, sports equipment, plastic, pen

Accuracy: Wrong

Photo: White, Grey, and Blue Converse Sneakers

Object Subtitle: Probably a group of shoes

Accuracy: Fairly Correct

Photo: Mead Five Star Notebook

Object Subtitle: Probably a close up of a computer

Accuracy: Wrong

Photo: White and Brown English Bulldog

Object Subtitle: a brown and white dog looking at the camera

Accuracy: Mostly Correct


  • Free
  • Currency scanner
  • Product scanner
  • Quick processing time


  • 3/10 accuracy for general image scanning
  • Money reader can’t scan coins
  • Face scanner can’t tell age
  • Inaccurate
  • Clunky UI (User Interface)

Conclusion: Overall Seeing AI was a mixed bag for me. For each good thing it felt like there were two caveats that came with it. However I still feel the app is worth a download for the product and currency features.


Thanks for reading, please keep an eye out for our review of Vhista as well as our round up of which of the three scanner apps is the best. If you have any suggestions of a review or topic you’d like to see us cover please feel free to leave a comment.

10 IOS Apps for the Visually Impaired

Despite smartphones being a huge part in our everyday lives not a lot of people realize that there are a ton of helpful apps for the visually impaired. With that being said here’s our list of the 10 best IOS apps for the visually impaired.


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10. Vhista

Seller: Juan David Cruz Serrano

Price: Free (In-App Purchases)

Stars: 5/5

What It Does: Vhista is an object Identification app that uses machine learning and your phones camera to narrate your surroundings. The app is also capable of describing other peoples appearances and can even predict emotions.


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9. Color Inspector

Seller: Aaron L’Heureux

Price: Free (In-App Purchases)

Stars: 3.8/5

What It Does: Color Inspector is a color identification app meant to help those who are color blind differentiate between different colors.


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8. Prizmo Pro Scanner

Seller: Creaceed SPRL 

Price: $9.99 (In-App Purchases)

Stars: 3.6/5

What It Does: Prizmo is a document scanner app capable of scanning and recognizing text based documents, business cards, and images. The app uses voice guidance to help those who are visually impaired properly position their phone to scan the document. Once scanned the app is capable of recognizing the text and reading it back to you.


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7. AIpoly Vision

Seller: AIpoly Inc

Price: Free (In-App Purchases)

Stars: 3.6/5

What It Does: AIpoly is an object and color recognition app that identifies and narrates objects in the environment to those who are visually impaired. AIpoly can recognize over 1,000 items without the subscription and does not require an internet connection to function.


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6. Talkler

Seller: Talkler Labs, LLC

Price: Free (In-App Purchases)

Stars: 4.5/5

What It Does: Talkler is a free app that lets you control your email via voice commands. The app can read your email to you, mark emails as unread, record a response, and delete emails.


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5. TapTapSee

Seller: Cloudsight, Inc

Price: Free

Stars: 4.3/5

What It Does: Taptapsee is an object identification app where you tap anywhere on the screen to take a picture and then the app’s AI will recognize the object and speak the identification back to you.


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4. Be My Eyes

Seller: S/I Be My Eyes

Price: Free

Stars: 4.8/5

What It Does: Be My Eyes connects those who are visually impaired and volunteers via video call, where the volunteer can provide assistance in completing simple tasks. 


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3. NantMobile Money Reader

Seller: IPPLEX Holdings Corporation 

Price: Free

Stars: 3.7/5

What It Does: Nant is a currency identification app that is capable of identifying 21 different currencies and then speaks the denomination back to the user. 


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2. Seeing AI

Seller: Microsoft

Price: Free

Stars: 4.5/5

What It Does: Seeing AI is an identification app that utilizes AI to narrate the world around you. The app is also capable of recognizing text and people.


Image result for bard mobile


Seller: Library Of Congress

Price: Free

Stars: 3.6/5

What It Does: BARD is the national library service for the blind and physically handicapped, which provides over 100.000 free, downloadable books and magazines, as well as musical scores to those who qualify.