accessibility

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accessibility How Tos

iOS 15: How to Use Background Sounds to Minimize Distractions and Stay Focused

Tuesday June 15, 2021 2:41 pm PDT by
In iOS 15 and iPadOS 15, one of several new accessibility features that Apple has introduced is Background Sounds, which is designed to help you stay focused, stay calm, and minimize distractions with the help of your iPhone or iPad. The Background Sounds on offer include balanced, bright, and dark noise, as well as natural sounds like ocean, rain, and stream. All of the sounds can be set to ...

How to Turn on Closed Captions and SDH on iPhone, iPad, and Mac

Friday March 26, 2021 3:46 pm PDT by
This article explains how to turn on closed captions and subtitles for the Deaf or Hard of Hearing on Apple devices. Keep reading to learn how it works. The terms "closed captions" and "subtitles" are sometimes used interchangeably, but they’re actually designed for two different audiences. Subtitles offer a text alternative for spoken dialogue in video, while closed captions not only show ...

How to Turn On Subtitles and Change Languages in the Apple TV App

Wednesday March 24, 2021 10:25 am PDT by
Apple's TV app allows you to choose customized audio languages, subtitles, and other accessibility features on your iPhone, iPad, Mac, PC, and Apple TV. This article explains how to change subtitles and languages for videos viewed in the app on the above devices as well as smart TVs and streaming devices that feature Apple's TV app. How to Change Subtitles or Languages on Apple TV On...

How to Enable Live Captions in Chrome Browser for Desktop

Thursday March 18, 2021 5:39 am PDT by
Google includes a Live Captions transcription feature in version 89 of its Chrome browser for desktop. Live Captions uses machine learning to create a real-time transcription for videos or audio played through the browser, which can make online media more accessible for members of the Deaf community and other people with hearing loss. Once enabled, Live Captions appear in a box in the bottom ...

iOS 14: How to Enhance Speech, Movies, and Music When Listening on AirPods, AirPods Max, and Beats

Saturday July 25, 2020 9:00 am PDT by
In iOS 14, Apple continues to build out its extensive accessibility features, and here we're going to show you how you can use the new Headphone Accommodations to amplify certain sounds if you're having difficulty hearing them. Headphones Accommodations works with Apple and Beats headphones, and is designed especially for those who are hard of hearing: It's able to amplify soft sounds and...

How to Get Siri to Respond to Your Voice When Your iPhone's Screen is Covered

Friday March 27, 2020 5:22 pm PDT by
Normally your iPhone will stop listening for the "Hey Siri" command when you place your device face down on a surface or the screen is otherwise covered. In these circumstances "Hey Siri" is automatically disabled until the situation changes. If you find this automated behavior inconvenient for your purposes, you'll be happy to learn that in iOS 13.4, Apple has added an option to always...

How to Make Your iPhone Display Dimmer Than Standard Brightness Controls Allow

Thursday January 17, 2019 2:07 am PST by
If the screen of your iPhone or iPad is too bright for comfort, the usual solution is to go to Settings -> Display & Brightness and drag the Brightness slider to the left, or open Control Center and adjust the corresponding setting from there. However, if the lowest setting offered by the Brightness level just isn't dim enough for you, there are a couple of ways to make your screen even...

How to Create a Virtual Home Button in iOS Using Assistive Touch

Wednesday January 9, 2019 4:49 am PST by
After testing some apps on an old iPhone 6 recently, I started to notice the device's Home button was becoming less and less responsive to finger presses, especially when it came to double-clicking it. Sure enough, after a few more days' use, the Home button stopped working completely. In memory of the Home button Now, ordinarily this would have left me in the unenviable position of having...

How to Use the Magnifier Feature on iPhone and iPad

Wednesday November 21, 2018 3:26 am PST by
Apple includes an accessibility feature in iOS that's useful if you have a visual impairment, but can even come in handy if your eyes are simply tired or you're struggling to read something like small print, especially in poor light. It's called the Magnifier, and has several advantages over just opening up the camera app and zooming in to get a better look at something. Enabling it is ...

How to Set Up and Use Accessibility Shortcut on iPhone and iPad

Thursday March 1, 2018 11:21 pm PST by
Apple includes a raft of accessibility options in iOS 11 to meet the various needs of its users, allowing them to customize their iPhone and iPad interface in several helpful ways. To make these features quicker to access, Apple also includes an Accessibility Shortcut feature in iOS 11 that, once set up, can be invoked using a triple click of the Home button (or Side button on iPhone X). This...

How to Make Icons and Fonts Bigger on Apple Watch

Wednesday June 17, 2015 1:39 pm PDT by
The Apple Watch screen is small. So small that it can be difficult for some people to read messages and other text on the device. Also, even though the Home screen icons get bigger when they are centered on the screen, you might find yourself accidentally tapping the wrong one more often than you'd like. Apple has included a couple of accessibility features that make dynamic text larger on the ...

accessibility Guides

Magnifier in iOS 14 Gets Overhauled UI and New Features, Can Be Added to Home Screen

Monday July 13, 2020 1:38 pm PDT by
In every version of iOS, Apple adds new Accessibility features and improves others, and iOS 14 is no exception. The Magnifier tool, designed by those with visual issues who need assistance, has new capabilities in iOS 14. iOS 14 Magnifier interface on left, iOS 13 Magnifier interface on right Updated Interface The app features an updated interface that makes controls more readily available...

accessibility Articles

siri glow

Apple Still Hasn't Fixed Siri Issue That Nixed Call, Email, and Voicemail Features Used by Low Vision and Blind Users [Updated]

Monday December 6, 2021 4:23 pm PST by
With the launch of iOS 15, Apple changed Siri functionality and removed features that were heavily relied on by low vision and blind iPhone users. ‌Siri‌ commands that provide details on phone calls, voice mails, and sending emails are no longer working, and Apple has yet to fix the issue. We first shared details on this problem in September, shortly after the launch of ‌iOS 15‌. Prior to...
apple accessibility features 2021

Apple Announces New Background Sounds, Apple Watch AssistiveTouch, and Eye-Tracking Accessibility Features

Wednesday May 19, 2021 11:23 am PDT by
Apple today announced the upcoming launch of several new accessibility features that are being added to its various products and services. Apple says that these options are designed for people with mobility, vision, hearing, and cognitive disabilities, and showcase Apple's belief that accessibility is a human right. "At Apple, we've long felt that the world's best technology should respond to...
chrome live captions feature google

Google Chrome for Desktop Gains Live Captions Feature for Audio and Video

Thursday March 18, 2021 5:33 am PDT by
Google today rolled out its live caption transcription feature to version 89 of Chrome browser for desktop, as first spotted by XDA Developers. Previously only available on some Pixel and Samsung phones, Live Captions uses machine learning to create a real-time transcription for videos or audio played through the browser, making online media more accessible for members of the Deaf community ...
accessibility site

Apple Launches Redesigned Accessibility Site and New Support Videos

Thursday December 3, 2020 3:07 am PST by
Apple today is honoring International Day of Persons with Disabilities with a re-launch of its Accessibility site and a new collection of tutorial videos highlighting the accessibility features of its software. As spotted by iMore, the redesigned site is made up of four broad sections that showcase many of the accessibility features across Apple's product range, with new categories covering...
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Twitter Expands Rollout of Voice Tweets Feature for iOS Users

Wednesday September 30, 2020 4:10 am PDT by
Twitter says it's making its voice tweets feature available to more users on iOS. Launched in June for a limited number of users, voice tweets is designed to allow people to tweet with their voice, sending voice-based messages instead of text. Voice tweets can be created by opening up the tweet composer and tapping the new wavelengths icon. A screen then opens with a user's Twitter icon,...
iphoneaccessibility

Apple Accessibility Exec: 'iPhone has Become the Most Powerful and Popular Assistive Device Ever'

Monday July 27, 2020 5:11 pm PDT by
This week marks the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and to highlight the milestone, TechCrunch did interviews with several tech companies and advocacy organizations, including Apple, to discuss how technology has improved the everyday lives of people with disabilities. At Apple, TechCrunch spoke to Sarah Herrlinger, the company's Director of Global...
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Apple Celebrates 30 Years of the Americans With Disabilities Act

Wednesday July 22, 2020 9:32 am PDT by
Apple today shared a new feature celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which was signed into law on July 26, 1990. The law prohibits discrimination due to disability, and has led to significant improvements and awareness of accessibility to help disabled individuals navigate their worlds. Apple has long been a champion of accessibility in its...
google maps wheelchair accessibility

Google Maps Increases Visibility of Wheelchair-Friendly Locations

Friday May 22, 2020 4:08 am PDT by
Google is currently rolling out an update for Google Maps that aims to make it easier for wheelchair users to get information about the accessibility of locations. By enabling the app's Accessible Places feature, users can benefit from increased visibility of businesses and places of interest on the map that are marked as wheelchair-accessible, including whether a location has accessible...
accessibility day 2020

Apple Highlights Global Accessibility Awareness Day With App Store Features and New Today at Apple Video

Thursday May 21, 2020 7:49 am PDT by
Apple today is marking Global Accessibility Awareness Day with several new features across its sites and services to promote inclusion and access to technology for anyone with a disability. On the front page of Apple.com, there's a new section today with the tagline "Works the way you do" that links to the company's existing Accessibility page, which highlights a number of personal stories...
Apple accessibility

Apple's Big Push to Improve Accessibility in iOS 13, iPadOS, and macOS Catalina

Thursday June 6, 2019 12:06 pm PDT by
Apple is introducing several accessibility-friendly features with iOS 13, iPadOS, and macOS Catalina, including Voice Control, Hover Text, and Mouse Pointer Support for iPhones and iPads. After the company's WWDC keynote on Monday, TechCrunch's iOS accessibility expert Steven Aquino sat down with Apple's Sarah Herrlinger, director of Global Accessibility Policy & Initiatives, who offered...
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Apple Reveals 'Voice Control' Accessibility Feature Coming to Mac and iOS

Monday June 3, 2019 1:02 pm PDT by
As part of its macOS Catalina and iOS 13 unveiling today at WWDC, Apple announced a new accessibility feature called Voice Control, allowing users to control their Mac and iOS devices entirely using vocal commands. Voice Control supports dictation and editing in both operating systems, along with comprehensive menu navigation. On iOS, the feature utilizes attention awareness to know when...
accessibility awareness 2019

Apple Highlights Global Accessibility Awareness Day With Front-Page Feature [Updated]

Thursday May 16, 2019 7:57 am PDT by
Today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day, an event that promotes inclusion and access to technology for anyone with a disability. As it has over the past few years, Apple is marking the day by updating Apple.com in the United States and a few regions around the world with a message promoting accessibility: "Technology is most powerful when it empowers everyone." On the Apple.com front...
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Apple Highlights How iPhone Allows Blind Veteran and Surfboarder Scott Leason to Live Independently

Friday November 9, 2018 7:40 am PST by
Apple today shared a story about how the iPhone's accessibility features enable blind veteran and surfboarder Scott Leason to live independently. Scott Leason surfboards at Mission Beach A veteran of the U.S. Navy, Leason was blinded in 1993 after seven years of service. After years of adapting to his new normal, he received an iPhone 5 in 2012, along with training from Sarah T. Majidzadeh,...
Google Gboard morse code

Google Adds Morse Code Accessibility Feature to Gboard on iOS

Thursday July 12, 2018 1:53 am PDT by
Google has added support for Morse code typing to its Gboard app for iOS, providing an accessible method of digital communication for people with disabilities. The customizable feature replaces the letters of the keyboard with large dot and dash keys to enter text, and offers text-to-Morse sequences to the auto-suggestion strip above the keyboard. Google has also launched a Morse Typing...
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Live Listen Coming to AirPods in iOS 12

Tuesday June 5, 2018 2:56 pm PDT by
Apple in 2014 introduced a Live Listen feature that's designed to allow the iPhone to pair with hearing aids and then serve as a remote microphone that beams the audio the iPhone picks up to the hearing aids. As noted by TechCrunch, Live Listen is coming to the AirPods with the iOS 12 update, letting iPhone users position their iPhones as a directional mic and have the audio relayed through...
apple accessibility store

Apple Backs New USB Standard for Using Braille Displays Across Ecosystems

Thursday May 31, 2018 10:08 am PDT by
Apple has voiced support for a new Human Interface Device standard that will bring versatile support and overall improve the technology of future USB-connected Braille displays [PDF]. Set forth by the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF), a non-profit organization for the advancement and adoption of USB technology, the new standard will help make it easier for blind and low-vision users to use...
apple vision accessibility

Vision-Focused Accessibility Efforts Made by Apple, Amazon, and Others Highlighted in New Report

Tuesday May 29, 2018 9:35 am PDT by
A new article published last night by The Wall Street Journal takes a look into how accessibility-focused technology has the "potential to fundamentally change the mobility, employment and lifestyle of the blind and vision-impaired." The piece looks at advancements made by Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and other companies, including hardware and software like Amazon's Echo, Microsoft's Seeing ...
everyone can code school

Apple's Everyone Can Code Curriculum Expanding to Schools Serving Blind and Deaf Students

Thursday May 17, 2018 6:35 am PDT by
Apple today on Global Accessibility Awareness Day announced that its Everyone Can Code curriculum is expanding to schools serving deaf, blind, or visually impaired students, starting with various locations in the United States in the fall. Initial list of participating schools:California School for the Blind (Fremont, CA) California School for the Deaf (Fremont, CA) District 75/Citywide...
accessibility day 2018

Apple.com Updated With Focus on Accessibility Features of iPhone, Mac, Apple Watch, and More

Thursday May 17, 2018 6:18 am PDT by
Apple today updated the front page and accessibility section of Apple.com in celebration of Global Accessibility Awareness Day. The event is held on the third Thursday of May every year and was created to promote inclusion and usability of technology for anyone with a disability. This year, Apple is highlighting its own accessibility features right on the home page of Apple.com, stating that...
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Apple's Accessibility Efforts Highlighted in New Interviews Ahead of Global Accessibility Awareness Day

Monday May 14, 2018 6:45 am PDT by
Thursday, May 17 is Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and ahead of the event CNET has spoken to individuals with disabilities, accessibility advocates, and Apple's own director of global accessibility policy and initiatives, Sarah Herrlinger, to discuss the company's efforts in this field. Showing off the wheelchair workouts on Apple Watch, two-time U.S. Paralympian Austin Pruitt explained...