Accessibility is one of the most vital things in Apples ethos, it seems to go much deeper than simply making your product available to as many people as possible. Not only including but developing accessibility for everything they produce. For the first time European Apple stores are rumoured to begin selling accessibility related accessories.
Mac Otakara reports that many Apple stores will begin stocking their shelves with new iOS and OSX accessibility options in early 2016. It is unknown at this moment what accessories will be offered but they are bound to compliment the numerous software features already in both platforms.
The Cupertino giants have long included features such as Grayscale, AssistiveTouch and VoiceOver into all of its devices. Receiving the Helen Keller Achievement Award from the American Foundation for the Blind in 2015 and 2009 for breakthroughs in accessible technology.
AFB is recognizing Apple for VoiceOver, a gesture-based screen reader that allows users to hear a description of everything happening on the display, and other features that make iPhone, iPad and other iOS devices accessible to people with vision loss.
Although it is no surprise that Apple are one of the first, lets take nothing away from such a brilliant move. It is fantastic to see such a major tech company giving retail space to help disabled people. Technology inclusion should be number one on the list for the whole of silicone valley, not as a business move – as a moral one.
Apple products have been more than just up market gadgets to me, they really have been my access to the many things most take for granted but that those of us with deafblindness, particularly struggle with. – Molly Watt
Technology that takes a simple form or a revolutionary one can allow not just accessibility but also life changing experiences. It might seem simple to you, it might seem a throw away product to you, but for some it just might be a life line.