Developing for Accessibility
As low-cost custom app developers in Hitchin, Hertfordshire (only 25 minutes from Central London) we are aware of the need to design and build cutting-edge bespoke applications with accessibility in mind.
What is accessibility?
Broadly speaking, when we say a site is accessible, we mean that the site's content is available, and its functionality can be operated, by literally anyone.
Even as bespoke app developers with decades of experience, we sometimes just assume that all users can see and use a keyboard, mouse, or touch screen, and can interact with the apps we develop in the same way. Whilst the majority of users will experience the app as the developer intended, users with any forms of common disability could experience issues that range from user-unfriendliness to complete showstoppers rendering the app unusable for them.
There are over 1 billion people with disabilities!
Whenever we are developing a custom app for our clients we will always consider the accessibility of the app's core components and features.
By integrating accessibility features we can improve your app's usability, especially for users with disabilities.
English: A collection of pictograms. Three of them used by the United States National Park Service. A package containing those three and all NPS symbols is available at the Open Icon Library (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Native Android Accessibility Features
Android has an accessibility layer that helps blind and low vision users navigate their Android devices more easily. These services provide things like text-to-speech, haptic feedback and trackball/directional pad navigation that augment the user experience.
Android Developer Accessibility Resources
Android app developers such as New Media Aid can use the resources below to design and test for accessibility. These accessibility testing tools can help our experienced Android app developers catch common mistakes like missing content descriptions, insufficient contrast, and undersized touch targets.
Accessible Web Initiatives
There exist a number of global and country-specific committees defining standards and advising on accessibility requirements and features for app development. Here below are some of interest:
FCC Video Programming Accessibility Advisory Committee (VPAAC)
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is an independent agency of the United States government that regulates communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable across the United States.
VPAAC was created by the FCC to develop recommendations for increasing accessibility to video content on apps.
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 covers a wide range of recommendations for making Web content more accessible. Following these guidelines will make content accessible to a wider range of people with disabilities, including blindness and low vision, deafness and hearing loss, learning disabilities, cognitive limitations, limited movement, speech disabilities, photosensitivity and combinations of these. Following these guidelines will also often make your Web content more usable to users in general.