Digital technology

Media Access Australia reviews the access features of the new Apple iPad

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The Apple iPad is the most talked about new media device launched recently. It seems that everyone wants one, including current owners of the quite accessible iPhone. The general world has been abuzz discussing the pros and cons of the iPad and the disability world is no exception. 

To help you learn more about the facts, the talk and the mythology of accessibility and the iPad, we have put together a summary of the reporting from around the world. 

 


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iPad US release sparks discussion on accessibility features

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The Apple iPad has now been released in the US, and a CNET hands-on review, which looks at its accessibility features, has been published online.

Official reviewers and individuals alike are talking about the iPad and about their impressions of the accessibility features of the iPad.  Anikto LLC who specialise in universal design, web accessibility, virtual technology and social media have posted a good summary of iPad accessibility features with interesting insights and recommendations for future research and development.


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ABC's iView now has captions

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From today, all primetime ABC1 and ABC2 programs available on the iView player can be watched with captions. The captions are in a very readable font, and are activated by clicking on a ‘CC’ tab in the right hand corner of the screen.

Programs currently screening on iView include Four Corners, Australian Story, Lateline and Q&A, as well as overseas programs like The Wire and The Daily Show. The captions are the same as those shown on the original television broadcast of the program, so programs captioned live will still have those live captions on the iView.

This is a significant step forward in making online video content accessible in Australia.

 


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Adobe plans major upgrades to accessibility support in Flash Player

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Adobe has announced that future upgrades to accessibility support in Adobe Flash Player will enhance accessibility across the three major operating systems: Windows, Mac and Linux. Mac users will particularly benefit from this upgrade, which will result in the ability to access Flash content using VoiceOver, Apple’s inbuilt text-to-speech application.

In a blog post, Andrew Kirkpatrick, Senior Product Manager for Accessibility at Adobe Systems, states that, “[t]he Flash Player will employ IAccessible2 from the Linux Foundation and the WAI-ARIA specification from the W3C to address user and developer needs and to ease interoperability with assistive technology vendors.”

Upgrades are expected to start with the next major release of Adobe Flash Player (following Flash Player 10.1).


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