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VoiceOver is Awesome

I think that developers can underestimate how awesome UIAccessibility is. The iPhone has amazing potential as an accessibility tool, and it’s used by a majority of visually impaired smartphone users. Well-designed apps really can offer meaningful improvements in peoples’ everyday lives. But mobile isn’t like other platforms where users can hack together scripts to improve the accessibility of poorly designed apps. It’s up to the application developer to provide adequate support for all users, and it’s unfortunately common to see apps where VoiceOver interaction is broken.

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Apple has made UIAccessibility pretty easy to support, but it does take some intentional effort and an understanding of the tools and usage patterns. In this talk, my goal is to give you basic familiarity with the accessibility tools as a user uses them, basic familiarity with the UIAccessibility API, some UX intuition for users with visual impairments, and some simple helpers and tools to make implementation easier.

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About the content

This talk was delivered live in June 2016 at AltConf. The video was recorded, produced, and transcribed by Realm, and is published here with the permission of the conference organizers.

David Sweetman

David Sweetman is a Lead Developer at Smashing Boxes. In 2011 when he realized he loved programming, iOS was the first platform he started hacking on, so he doesn’t notice anything particularly odd about Objective-C syntax. Before he got into programming, he provided in-home and in-office training for visually impaired computer users, and he believes accessible software is an extremely powerful tool to raise the quality of peoples’ lives.

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