Accessibility Update

Laetitia Thompson from Centre for Accessibility Australia

Apple Announces New Accessibility Features Coming Later This Year

By Laetitia L. Thompson, Senior Digital Content Editor at the Centre for Accessibility, Australia.

In a recently released announcement, Apple revealed that they will be introducing new accessibility features to their devices, set to be released later this year. 

Among the upcoming features is Assistive Access, a special mode on iPhones and iPads designed to simplify the screen for people with cognitive disability. Instead of overwhelming users with numerous apps and buttons, it focuses on the most essential ones. Users will also have the option to customise the appearance, choosing between big icons or text-based layouts.

Apple is also introducing two new speech features. Live Speech enables users to type what they want to say, and the device will read it out loud, providing assistance for users who are non-verbal. Personal Voice allows users to record their own voices saying different phrases, ensuring they can communicate using their own voice.

For individuals who are blind or with low vision, the Magnifier app will include a new feature called Point to Speak. By pointing their devices at objects with text, such as microwave buttons or cookbook recipes, users can have the text read aloud to them, offering a helpful assistant-like experience.

Users can look forward to exploring these new features upon their release later this year, opening up new possibilities for accessibility of Apple devices. For more information, please read the Forbes article on Apple’s announcements.