From speeches to podcasts, using a teleprompter can enhance the quality of your presentations. Once only a commercial accessory, the benefits of teleprompters are now widespread among consumers by way of the tablet computer. Choose from dozens of apps that will allow you to display and scroll your custom text.
What is a Teleprompter?
A professional-style Teleprompter is a device that shows the words of a speech projected onto a special piece of glass that shows a reflected view of the words for the speaker on one side and a transparent view on the other so that no one else can see what's being read. The words scroll at controllable speeds, usually by a separate operator. Teleprompters help you deliver your speech with confidence, eliminating the fear of memory slips, and minimizing stutters.
Teleprompters are used by speakers in live events as well as on broadcast TV, and typically cost around $10,000-$20,000 (not including the salary you have to pay for someone else to operate it). That's fine if you have a presidential or network television budget, but fortunately for the rest of us, there's a much cheaper solution: Tablet Computers.
Using an iPad or Tablet for a Teleprompter
To use a tablet or as a teleprompter, you need:
- An app that makes the tablet behave like a Teleprompter
- A tablet holder and stand
- A tablet controller
Here are a few teleprompter apps of dozens available to check out:
iPad Teleprompter Apps:
Android Teleprompter Apps:
You can also purchase many add-ons to make your rig like the pros with mirrors and projectors and more. AirTurn can get you started with the basic accessories.
Holding your Tablet or Phone for Teleprompting
For a basic solution for holding your tablet or phone like a teleprompter, check out the AirTurn TechAssist. It's a universal tablet holder and portable stand for tablets, meaning that it will accommodate everything from a phone to an iPadpro.
Your needs may vary, so there are many accessories available that compliment the AirTurn MANOS Universal Tablet Holder. You can mount the tablet holder with a side mount clamp so you can have a mic or mic on a boom on top or put the tablet on top and the mic on the side!
Controlling Your Teleprompter
Instead of hiring that teleprompter operator, you can get a set of silent, wireless Bluetooth pedals like the AirTurn DUO or AirTurn PEDpro and control the teleprompter apps yourself hands-free. The most basic two-pedal models will give you the option to play and pause the scrolling script.
With the 4-pedal model, the AirTurn QUAD 200, you can assign various functions to each pedal (depending on the app) so that you can speed up, slow down, or jump to various points in the script. Some apps even let you video record as you scroll through the script so you can create vlogs and podcasts all from one device.
If you are not in a live setting, such as recording voice-overs or podcasts, you may wish to use a handheld control. The AirTurn DIGIT III provides a solution that is programmable for up to five commands.
There are many applications for teleprompters, some of which are on MAC or PC. Some will allow macro or special keyboard commands to handle many different ways to control the actions of the app. These can be programmed onto any AirTurn controller currently being sold using the AirTurn Manager app available for iOS, macOS, and Android. Check the app store to download your free copy.