Smartphones

Affordable digital access of real interest to seniors

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Media Access Australia (MAA) was a sponsor of the Australian Seniors Computer Clubs Association (ASCCA) annual conference that kicked off in Sydney on 8 November. MAA was also exhibiting at the event, with a focus on the content-rich Affordable Access website and downloadable resources.

Philip Jenkinson at the MAA stand at the Computer Seniors Conference

 Philip Jenkinson at the MAA stand at the Computer Seniors Conference

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GoDigi National Year of Digital Inclusion Expo

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The GoDigi National Year of Digital Inclusion Expo, presented by Infoxchange, is being staged on 16 November at the Australian Technology Park in Redfern, Sydney. The event aims to help create a society where everyone can innovate, and Media Access Australia will be there, showcasing free Affordable Access resources.

Image of 2016 National Year of Digital Inclusion Expo banner

2016 National Year of Digital Inclusion Expo

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Some replacement Galaxy Note7’s still too hot to handle

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In September 2016 Samsung globally recalled more than 2.5 million of their flagship Galaxy Note7 smartphones due to safety concerns. Now there are growing reports of incidents of replacement models catching fire too, and production has ceased.

Two Samsung Note7 phones

Two Samsung Note7 phones

The phones, which include a lot of useful accessibility features and have been a popular choice in Australia for those people with a disability, were recalled and a replacement program put in place due to multiple cases of exploding batteries and spontaneous combustion. Yet the problems continue.

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USAA’s new banking app allows voice-guided cheque depositing

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USAA, a Texas-based Fortune 500 diversified financial services group, has recently demonstrated that banking and accessibility can easily go hand in hand with each other. This was proved in a recent update to their banking app which will mean that individuals who are blind or have a vision impairment will hear the benefits – literally.

USAA logo

This system offers verbal cues to guide a vision impaired customer to be able to properly position a cheque to deposit it. They use commands like ‘push out’, ‘pull in’, ‘move right’, ‘lift device’, ‘hold steady’, ‘image captured’, and more.


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Governments are toughening up on public sector web accessibility

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State and Federal Governments around the globe are toughening up on public sector web accessibility. The latest case is the Alaskan Juneau School District, which felt the wrath of that state’s Government because of a complaint from the public that their websites aren’t inclusive for all needs.

close up of a man writing on some documents

After receiving the disability discrimination complaint, Alaskan authorities undertook a rigorous investigation and found out that ten other schools, educational groups, and institutions (including the Montana School for the Deaf and blind) also had accessibility issues on their websites.


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Apple wins award for accessibility advances

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The American Council of the Blind (ACB) has awarded Apple the coveted Robert S. Bray Award for their continued accessibility innovations, which will be presented on 4 July during the ACB’s annual conference and convention in Minneapolis, USA.

Close up of an iPhone 6 being used by a woman

The Bray Award is given to a person or business that has improved or expanded the level of accessibility of communication technology or devices for people who are blind or have a vision impairment, therefore allowing greater inclusion for all.


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Curtin University receives grant to investigate the impact of mobile apps on people with a disability

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An investigation by researchers at Curtin University into how mobile apps can support individuals with a disability has been awarded the 2016 Dr Louisa Alessandri Research Grant.

Someone using their smart phone maps app outside surrounded by leaves on the floor


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Uber's new accessibility features create job opportunities for Deaf and hearing impaired drivers

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Uber has recently improved its app’s accessibility for drivers who are Deaf or hearing impaired, removing communication barriers so that they can have an equal opportunity to become an Uber driver.

A man holding a phone with the Uber app displayed, standing in view of a busy road

What is Uber?

Uber is an online transportation network that allows consumers with smartphones to submit a trip request which is then routed to Uber drivers who use their own cars.


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Snapchat adds closed captioning support for Discover videos

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Social messaging app Snapchat has added closed captioning support for videos shared within its Discover section, allowing major publishers to share accessible video content with broad communities of smartphone users without access to audio content.

Right hand holding an iPhone 6 with Snapchat Discover displayed on screen. Image credit: Snapchat


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