Tips for Using This Blog

To read these pages most efficiently with a screen reader, use heading level navigation.

• At Level 2 are post dates, archives, subscription info, recent tweets, Good Stuff (a collection of pages), and More Information on Android and Accessibility (a compilation of related links).

• At Level 3 are post topics and subtopics.



For a chronological list of posts, check the archive dropdown list, or use the Topic List link under the Good Stuff heading.

To submit a post, contact AccessAna.

Monday, March 7, 2011

How do I Develop an Accessible App?

If you are reading this blog for the first time, you are probably a developer wondering how to make your app more accessible to screen reader users. This post explains how you can test your app for accessibility, what you can do to make it more usable by blind and visually impaired people, and where you can find more information to help you develop accessibly.

Understanding Android Accessibility

When developing for Android, you must keep three things in mind:

1. The touchscreen is not accessible, so blind and visually impaired users find and activate controls using the d-pad or trackball.
2. Web views are not accessible, so blind and visually impaired users can not read information presented in this format, unless it is web content that can be accessed via the user default browser, in this case the Ideal Web Reader.
3. End users have very basic control over the information that is spoken, so long explanatory screens aren't helpful because the information generally cannot be repeated or spoken in its entirety.

Testing for Accessibility

To find out how accessible your app is for eyes-free users, simply turn on accessibility, activate a free screen reader, and try to use your own app without looking at the screen. Odds are you'll be sailing a stormy sea.

To turn on accessibility, do the following:

1. From the Android Market, install a free screen reader. Current options are Talkback and Spiel. Choose one.
2. Go into Settings/Accessibility, and check Accessibility and your screen reader.

The phone should start talking within a second or two. If it doesn't, you may need to install a free TTS library like SVox Classic or ESpeak.

Developing with a Screen Reader in Mind

Google has published a set of best practices for designing for accessibility. These boil down to a few key concepts:
• The UI should be navigable using a directional controller.
• Widgets should provide content descriptions.
• Custome views should deliver appropriate accessibility events during user interactions.

The list of suggestions below is based on issues end users encounter regularly:

1. Image-based controls should have appropriate content-descriptions; otherwise, eyes-free users hear "image button," without getting information about what the button is for.
2. All on-screen controls should be reachable via the trackball/d-pad or the Menu key; otherwise, eyes-free users cannot find or use them. This includes the Accept and Decline buttons of the initial screen.
3. Controls without implicit text (e.g., text inputs, radio buttons with separate labels, etc.) should also have contentDescriptions set; otherwise, eyes-free users can not complete complex input scenarios, as they will hear only "edit" or "checkbox," without having any information about how to populate the edit field or what checking or unchecking the box does. There is currently no way of associating static labels with inputs
. A workaround is to make the labels themselves focusable, but it's better to simply set the contentDescription of controls to the same value as the text that labels them.
4. Text alternatives should be available for information presented as embedded web views; otherwise, eyes-free users hear, "web view," and nothing else. Embedded web views are not spoken by the screen reader.
5. Apps that open the browser (to display a recipe, lyrics, shopping site, news article, etc) should open the user's default browser; otherwise, eyes-free users hear, "Web view," and nothing else. The stock browser is currently not accessible,, so blind and visually impaired users access the web via the Ideal Web Reader.
6. Explanitory text, like help screens and tutorials, should be short, no longer than the text displayed in the app description of the Market application on the phone; otherwise, eyes-free users do not hear them in their entirety. Two notepad apps that display text accessibly are uNote and OI Notepad.

Finding More Information

For more information, you can refer to a code lab created by some engineers on the eyes-free team. It goes over more advanced concepts. But this code lab is probably overkill for a developer who, like you, already has designed an app and just wants to make it accessible.

For help with specific issues, you can post to a developer group for programmers with eyes-free accessibility in mind.

Checking an App's Accessibility Rating

To find out how accessible eyes-free users think your app is, visit the Android Access website and look your app up. The site is a venue for blind and visually impaired Android users to rate apps for general accessibility and to share tips and workarounds for problems, like unlabeled buttons or inaccessible features.

To let end users know about your most recent accessibility improvements, post to the Eyes-Free users list or tweet @AccessAna, who will be happy to let other users know.

59 comments:

  1. I see the superlative contents on your blogs and I perfectly enjoy going through them.
    great post to read

    ReplyDelete
  2. if you are craving for an online presence. We have been offering customized Web development company delhi,software development, mobile application and web application services to businesses of all sorts.For more information please visit on Web Development Company and Web Development in India.

    ReplyDelete
  3. We offer cross platform mobile solutions including SIP dialer to Android Application Development Company worldwide clients. We specialize in the development of business apps for iOS, Android, Windows, and SmartPhones.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic.
    download facetime for android

    ReplyDelete
  5. Helpful post!
    How do I Develop an Accessible App?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for sharing information.
    recharge plans
    Videocon Telecom comes up with LOWEST & UNMATCHED TARIFF in Haryana; Offers ALL LOCAL CALLS at only 25P/min.

    ReplyDelete
  7. The free online chatting sites are now becoming available everywhere. It's most advanced techniques are reason of it.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Delta Decisions Inc. is a premiere web development firm specializing in e-commerce and business websites. We offer services including website design, web hosting, SEO servives, pay-per-click, google adwords, website branding and much more.
    website hosting Toronto

    ReplyDelete
  9. I found some useful information in your blog Apps Development it was awesome to read, thanks for sharing this great content to my vision, keep sharing.
    Website Designing

    ReplyDelete
  10. This was truly a fascinating theme and I kinda concur with what you have said here! make money per download

    ReplyDelete
  11. Do you know which the top smartphone platform in the US is? It is undoubtedly Android. Android has achieved the trust of more than 52% of total Smartphone users in the U.S. Android Development California

    ReplyDelete
  12. The blog was absolutely fantastic! Lot of great information which can be helpful in some or the other way. Keep updating the blog, looking forward for more contents...Great job, keep it up..Web Designing Companies Bangalore | Web Development Company

    ReplyDelete
  13. I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post. cataract surgery in india

    ReplyDelete
  14. I’m really impressed with your blog article, such great & useful knowledge you mentioned here.Thank you for sharing this blog.
    Mobile App Development Company
    Android app Development Company
    ios app development Company
    Mobile App Development Companies

    ReplyDelete
  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete

  16. Thanks for posting useful information.You have provided an nice article, Thank you very much for this one. And i hope this will be useful for many people.. and i am waiting for your next post keep on updating these kinds of knowledgeable things...Really it was an awesome article...very interesting to read..
    please sharing like this information......
    Android training in chennai
    Ios training in chennai

    ReplyDelete
  17. Nice it seems to be good post... It will get readers engagement on the article since readers engagement plays an vital role in every blog.. i am expecting more updated posts from your hands.
    Mobile App Development Company
    Mobile App Development Companies

    ReplyDelete
  18. Being new to the blogging world I feel like there is still so much to learn. Your tips helped to clarify a few things for me as well as giving..
    Android App Development Company

    ReplyDelete
  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  20. great and nice blog thanks sharing..I just want to say that all the information you have given here is awesome...Thank you very much for this one.
    Web Design Development Company
    Web design Company in Chennai
    Web development Company in Chennai

    ReplyDelete
  21. it is really amazing...thanks for sharing....provide more useful information...
    Mobile app development company

    ReplyDelete
  22. Being new to the blogging world I feel like there is still so much to learn. Your tips helped to clarify a few things for me as well as giving..
    Fitness SMS
    Salon SMS
    Investor Relation SMS

    ReplyDelete
  23. This article is very much helpful and i hope this will be an useful information for the needed one.Keep on updating these kinds of informative things...
    iOS App Development Company

    ReplyDelete


  24. Thanks for this informative article, I hope you will get most positive response specially for this post. . . .
    โกเด้นสล็อต

    ReplyDelete
  25. I read your article. Very Nice. This is really great and informative post. Thanks for sharing.Android Application Development Company

    ReplyDelete
  26. Pretty article! I found some useful information in your blog, it was awesome to read, thanks for sharing this great content to my vision, keep sharing..
    Texting API
    Text message marketing
    Digital Mobile Marketing
    Sms API
    Sms marketing

    ReplyDelete
  27. Thank you very much for sharing. You always try to sharing such a good information with us.Android App Development Company

    ReplyDelete
  28. great and nice blog thanks sharing..I just want to say that all the information you have given here is awesome...Thank you very much for this one.
    web design Company
    web development Company
    web design Company in chennai
    web development Company in chennai
    web design Company in India
    web development Company in India

    ReplyDelete
  29. Wow you can also try vender app it is a productivity tools that is helpful to business people

    ReplyDelete
  30. These ways are very simple and very much useful, as a beginner level these helped me a lot thanks fore sharing these kinds of useful and knowledgeable information.

    snapho

    ReplyDelete
  31. Your post is very informative. I have read all your posts and all are very informative. Thanks for sharing and keep it up like this.
    Website Designing Company

    ReplyDelete
  32. Technology and marketing are ever evolving, which means a single strategy will not generate same results.

    Xamarin mobile app development Company in India

    ReplyDelete
  33. It is a great sharing...I am very much pleased with the contents you have mentioned. I wanted to thank you for this great article
    Online Marketing Services
    Seo Companies in bangalore
    low cost seo plans

    ReplyDelete
  34. Professionally written blogs are rare to find, however I appreciate all the points mentioned here. I also want to include some other writing skills which everyone must aware of. รับดูแลเว็บไซต์

    ReplyDelete
  35. hello Thanks for sharing this information.
    We are one of the most trusted Android Mobile App Development
    and IOS application development
    to meet your business complex requirement through offshore world.
    Do you have project and want to discuss with us ?
    We can assist you in Web Application Development, Mobile App development, Games Development & Emerging Technology.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Bulk SMS is brilliant, cost-effective, promotional, advertising service, and reasonable, these India service industry has given rise to some such aspects for which even the small scale and large scale industry are opting for these low-priced service profit.

    http://truebulksms.com/bulk-sms.html

    ReplyDelete
  37. Bulk SMS marketing is the best way for marketing your brand these days. Bulk SMS marketing is on the top of the list of most profitable yet useful approaches for any enterprise that wants to advertise and market the brand that it offers, to its potential customers. One can surely expect a huge amount of money, and a great client stand as well by using bulk SMS services.

    http://truebulksms.com/bulk-sms.html

    ReplyDelete

  38. Bulk SMS marketing is the best way for marketing your brand these days. Bulk SMS marketing is on the top of the list of most profitable yet useful approaches for any enterprise that wants to advertise and market the brand that it offers, to its potential customers. One can surely expect a huge amount of money, and a great client stand as well by using bulk SMS services.

    Mobile: 9818839191
    http://truebulksms.com/bulk-sms.html

    ReplyDelete
  39. Bulk SMS is brilliant, cost-effective, promotional, advertising service, and reasonable, these India service industry has given rise to some such aspects for which still the small scale and large scale industry are opting for these low-priced services profit.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Nowadays, company like Pro Integrate wants their IT consultants to offer them staffing services. Several surveys have proven that IT consulting is really important. More and more companies are spending on these services. So we provide better and improved access to resources. Information which we provide cannot be done by the IT employees of your organization.

    ReplyDelete
  41. We, Swavish software is Top Mobile Apps Development Company in Delhi NCR. The need for mobile app developers is thus increasing at a higher rate. So, we are here to develop different mobile apps for our clients and We also provide the best IT security services in Delhi.
    Website: - https://www.swavishsoftwares.com/mobileappsdevelopment.php

    ReplyDelete
  42. Swavish Softwares is preeminent Website Designing Company in Delhi offer services like responsive website design, ecommerce website design, custom website design in which our web designers deal directly with each customer.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Bulk SMS services is the best method to delivered your message to your audience hence it is the hottest choice for most of the company these days.

    ReplyDelete
  44. non specific daklinza.com requires either the User or Customer or the Caregiver to affirm he/she is totally mindful of the signs, symptoms, medicate cooperations, impacts of missed dosage or overdose of the drugs he/she arranges from us. It is basic to look for proficient guidance from your doctor before obtaining or devouring any drug from bland daklinza.com Daclatasvir 60mg

    ReplyDelete
  45. """Buy Generic Atripala (Trustiva/Viraday)The target (Tylenol / emtricitabine) is a combination of three antiviral drugs in the reverse rna, an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor. Generic Atripla
    Viraday"

    ReplyDelete