In June 2009, Apple changed the accessible smartphone market forever with the announcement of the VoiceOver screen reader on the iPhone 3GS. The device was officially released to the public on Friday, June 19, 2009; five years later, I thought it would be fun to take a look at my own early experiences with the iPhone, reflect on how much VoiceOver has changed (hint: more than I realized), and offer some thoughts on—and hopes for—the future.
In what could soon be coming as the first of its kind, Humanware appears to be developing a new braille display and app for synchronizing notes with iDevices. In late April, an app hit the App Store called Brailliant Sync. According to the description by Harpo, the app is designed "for synchronizing notes between Gmail, IMAP and similar servers and Brailliant 14 Braille devices." This tells us 2 things.
We are pleased and excited to announce the six people who have been invited to join our newly created AppleVis Blog Team. Each brings with them a unique mix of interests and experience, and we are sure that they will help us to make our blog an even more powerful and respected voice in the space that we occupy.
Rather than attempt to summarize each team member's unique backgrounds and qualifications, we felt it would be better to let each person introduce themselves:
Over the last couple years, I’ve come to a conclusion about life as a blind person: it isn’t the physical lack of sight that’s the biggest difficulty I face; but rather, it is attempting to overcome peoples’ negative stereotypes and misconceptions about what I can—and cannot—do that is the real problem.
At its annual Worldwide Developer's Conference this week, Apple previewed some of the new features coming to its iOS, watchOS, tvOS, and macOS platforms later this year. At this point, it's worth noting that this software is still in beta form, and not all features--particularly, the specifics of how they will be implemented--are finalized. With that said, below is what Apple has told us will be coming for users of accessibility features:
If you're into words, you're always on the lookout for the best and the most decent vocabulary titles, word games, puzzles, and, last but not least, dictionaries. And you might want to take your treasury of words with you -- regardless of the OS you use. A good dictionary is the bread and butter of every logophile and having access to what many scholars deem authoritative is of utmost importance.
During the past week there has been a series of small reminders of how accessibility sits at the very heart of Apple’s ethos and practice.
The first of these came in one of the videos shown as part of the keynote presentation at last week’s Worldwide Developers’ Conference (WWDC). Featured prominently was a piano app for the iPad being developed by the Ludwig Project, which will seek to bring music to the hearing impaired by enabling them to sense music through vibration.
Apple Releases iOS 8.1 With a Number Of Fixes And Improvements For Blind And Low Vision Users
Following a short beta testing period, Apple today released iOS 8.1 to the public - the first major update to iOS 8 since its release last month. Along with the introduction of a number of new features, iOS 8.1 appears to include a number of accessibility-specific fixes and improvements.
In late April, Apple began offering the opportunity for users to explore and experience Apple Watch's accessibility features at try-on appointments. After confirming that my local Apple Store had a Watch set up and ready (all stores should now have Watch units available for accessibility demonstrations, but my appointment was at the beginning of the rollout), I went into the store to check the Apple Watch out for myself.
At the end of each month, we at the AppleVis Editorial Team take a look at all the apps that have been posted to the site during that month—either for the first time, or where there has been a significant update—and decide which of these we think is the most noteworthy.
AFB have just announced the forthcoming release of AccessNote, their note taking app for iOS.
With many of us already using mainstream apps that offer more functionality than appears to be present in the initial release of AccessNote, it will be interesting to see where it will fit in the iOS marketplace. At $30, some might anticipate that it will sit rather uncomfortably.
The "Time Flies" Event
On September 15, Apple held its second all-digital major press event of the year, calling it "Time Flies". Ordinarily, the September event is where we get to see the latest iPhone, among other products. Even Apple isn't immune to the craziness of life in the year 2020, however; it seems we'll have to wait a bit longer for the new iPhone. Instead, today was about Apple Watch and iPad. It wasn't all hardware, though.
Only a few weeks ago, Apple held a media event where it announced the latest iPhones and Apple Watches. Where, people wondered, were the iPad and Mac upgrades? The answer: right here.
At today's event, Apple introduced the latest iPad Pro, Apple Pencil, MacBook Air, and Mac Mini. Yes, the poor Mini was finally updated. The company also released iOS 12.1, with a range of features and fixes.
Below is a list of the major highlights from today's Apple Special Event keynote, compiled from the twitter feed of AppleVis and other sources as linked to on this page.
Apple held its annual fall media event today, announcing new iPhones, Apple Watches, and Apple TV. As usual, we’re here to recap what was shown off, so you know just how close to all your money Apple will be getting this year.
Apple has today made available a wealth of specific information regarding the implementation of accessibility features on Apple Watch. While it was recently announced that the watch would contain support for VoiceOver, Zoom, and Dynamic Type, there have—up until this point—still been many questions about how these features would be implemented.