ia play

the good life in a digital age

various commentators on the iPad and accessibility

After some of the frustations with the accessibility of the iPhone when first launched,  I wondered what people were saying about the accessibility of the iPad.  There’s not masses of commentary yet and doesn’t seem to be any from anyone with any first hand experience (unsurprisingly).

This didn’t stop abledbody being unimpressed with the accessibility of the announcement:

“In Apple’s rush to debut the new iPad tablet it forgot one little piece of marketing: Accessibility. Apple has an accessibility page but it didn’t bother to add the iPad before launching it yesterday at its headquarters. And even though Steve Jobs’ keynote was likely prepared, Apple didn’t bother to add captions for deaf or hard of hearing reporters, nor did it add captions to the 46-minute video broadcast of Jobs’ speech or the video “demo” of the new tablet.”

But they do go on to say that the iPad has the same accessibility features as the iPhone including VoiceOver, screen zoom, mono audio and closed-captioned support.  They believe the size and weight are a good thing, as are the built in speakers.

Not so good is the shortage of captioned content to actually watch, and the inability to plug in alternative input devices.

abledbody: news, insights and reviews on disability and assistive technology » Hey Apple, What About iPad’s Accessibility?.

AccessTech News is pleased with the external keyboard, white-on-black display and the  cognitive simplicity but mentions that less languages are supported for VoiceOver.

Accessibility and the iPad: First Impressions « AccessTech News.

Mac-cessibility Network comments that “iWork for the Mac is almost entirely accessible, and Apple has made it a point to have good access to its AppStore offerings. We expect iWork for the iPad to be accessible, but this is not confirmed.”

They also have content concerns:

“To date, electronic book stores, such as Amazon’s Kindle store, have not provided books in an accessible format, owing to DRM restrictions. We hope Apple may be able to pave the way for the visually impaired and their access to content with the iBooks application and store. If VoiceOver does indeed have access to the content in these publications, it would be a tremendous step forward for access to printed media.”

The Mac-cessibility Network – News [Lioncourt.com]

Written by Karen

January 29th, 2010 at 5:32 pm

Posted in accessibility