Singing the tune of ooTunes Radio

Member of the AppleVis Blog Team

It's comforting to know that a mainstream application we're purchasing is accessible; however, it's more outstanding to know that the developer of such an application is just an email away, ready to listen to our concerns and make the necessary modifications. The other day I was using ooTunes Radio and noticed that the Back button in various windows cannot be pressed using the two-finger Scrub gesture. Not a big deal, but I thought I'd mention it. In addition, I couldn't find the fantastic NPR Worldwide station which is for non-US listeners. For your information, it's and FM channel in Berlin which broadcasts the NPR Worldwide stream and is the only channel whose schedule exactly mirrors that of NPR's flagship and live programs. It's also without local or state-oriented segments interspersed among the main content.

Anyway, I emailed the developer, Steven Woolley, and mentioned both issues. Much to my surprise, he promptly replied and told me that he's aware of the Back button issue though fixing it might be complicated.

What's, however, more interesting is that he managed to add NPR Worldwide to the list of available stations though he lives in the USA and can't himself tune into the channel. It took him 2 efforts in 24 hours to make ooTunes Radio the only application to provide access to this great channel on a mobile platform -- even NPR's own application hasn't done that for international listeners.

So, once more, kudos to Steve for having made such a popular mainstream application accessible! Such developers make a tangible difference in the way the visually impaired can interact with their iDevices.