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    Accessibility awareness is on the rise, but is it turning into action? – TechCrunch

    For almost two years, people around the world have made significant adjustments to how they interact with the world. It forced many to change their daily behaviour. Unfortunately, some of these changes make everyday tasks that many take for granted a daunting task for those who need accessibility and accommodation.

    A Harris Paul More than half of American adults have revealed that they have increased their online activity due to a pandemic. For people with disabilities, that number increases to 60%.

    Increasing online activity does not mean that everyone can reach their goals. So how does the crisis affect accessibility? Has your organization finally received a message about the importance of accessibility?

    Increased accessibility awareness

    In recent years, have you felt that there is something about accessibility and people with disabilities everywhere you look? Many TV ads from big tech companies feature people with disabilities and accessible technology.

    Apple started from the beginning Prime time ads On network TV, followed by Microsoft, advertisement During the biggest game in America.and Google adsA deaf man calls his son for the first time using the live captions on his Pixel smartphone.And Amazon Advertising about Brendan, Employees of the hearing impaired.

    Obviously, accessibility awareness seems to be growing. In May, to commemorate Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Apple, Google, and Microsoft announced a number of product-wide accessibility-related updates and resources. DAGER System made the following announcement Accessible game database, Currently live. Gamers can now search for accessible games on the platform and filter accessibility by auditory, visual, color, and fine movement categories.

    It’s great that tech companies talk about accessibility, promote it, and even make it part of their marketing budget. But there is a difference between talking about it and taking action. Talking about it does not make the website accessible. It takes action.

    Recently Forrester research We found that 8 out of 10 companies are working on digital accessibility. So is something really changing? Can people use the website without barriers?

    Did increased use of the Internet improve accessibility?

    That’s the 2021 question Accessibility report status (SOAR) The report has set out to answer. The purpose of SOAR is to assess the current state of accessibility across the enterprise and industry. It’s a tool for finding what’s more accessible and what needs to be done.

    Reports have traditionally obtained accessibility indicators by analyzing accessibility status. Alexa Top 100 Websites.. The report focuses on the most popular digital products, not volume. In most cases, changes start at the top. When things improve at the top, the rest will continue.

    Here, the Pareto principle, known as the 80/20 rule, applies. It reaches about 80% of traffic and reaches the top 20% of digital products.

    Interestingly, the Alexa Top 100 listed 31 new websites in 2021 and wasn’t included in the 2019 or 2020 Top 100. Only 60% of the websites tested on the Alexa 100 list in 2019 appeared on the 2021 list.

    Check out the changes and the current Alexa Top 100 website to easily see how the pandemic has changed your online behaviour. The top websites included many productivity apps such as file transfer and collaboration tools, delivery services, and communication tools such as Zoom and Slack.

    When it comes to video platforms, it’s clear that pandemics have had a huge impact on accessibility, especially when closed captioning comes into play. As of April 2020, no video platform except Skype had automatic captions built in. Unfortunately, the Skype captions weren’t of the highest quality.

    Google Meet has added captions by May 2020. At this point, Zoom was in beta testing automatic captions. However, initially it was only deployed to paid accounts.Thanks to the petition, Zoom has agreed to make it available With a free account.. It took about 8 months for it to happen.

    Around June, the Microsoft Teams iOS app made it available for free with captions to non-Teams network users. It’s a great start. However, you need more than a caption to access the video platform. They need to be navigable without a mouse. In addition to the caption, the platform must provide a transcript. Compatible with screen readers and braille displays are transcripts, not captions.

    Now, the main results of Alexa’s Top 100 website tests are:

    • Of the websites we tested, screen readers were able to access 62%, up from 40% in 2020.
    • All pages passed to have the “lang” attribute of a valid document.
    • Only 11% of the websites tested had an error in the input field label.
    • The most common error is Aria..
    • The second most common error was color contrast.

    In short, Alexa’s top 100 website screen reader tests show significant improvements over the 2019 and 2020 tests.

    How about mobile apps? One study Of the four hours spent on the mobile internet, 88% of respondents found that they spent that time on mobile apps. Given this high app usage and the accessibility community’s interest in app accessibility, SOAR tested mobile apps for the first time. Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 added 10 success criteria related to accessibility for mobile devices.

    Mobile analytics looks at the top 20 free apps for both iOS and Android and the top 20 paid apps for both operating systems. The biggest surprise is that free apps are much more accessible than paid apps.

    When we tested the accessibility of the main features of free apps, 80% of iOS apps and 65% of Android apps passed. Regarding accessibility of the main features of paid apps, only 10% of the main features of iOS apps and 40% of the main features of Android apps passed.

    Why disparity?Free apps have far more users than paid apps Statista Shows that over 93% use free apps on both Android and iOS devices. The more consumers of a product, the more likely they are to request and provide accessibility feedback. Also, many of the companies behind free apps are large tech companies that put accessibility first.

    Where are you going from here?

    It’s exciting to see advances in digital accessibility, but businesses need to get going. One of the most effective ways to do this is to take a top-down buy-in approach to accessibility. Make it part of the culture.

    Currently, building an accessibility-first culture doesn’t happen overnight or even months. take time. Every little step is progress. The important thing is to take the first step, no matter how small. It could be as easy as teaching everyone in your company about adding alt text to your images. Alternatively, it also explains how to use the appropriate headings.

    It takes a lot of practice to become a muscle memory. After conquering one thing, move on to the next. According to SOAR 2021, many companies are learning alternative texts and headlines. But they suffer from color contrast and ARIA. Perhaps that will be the next step.

    Creating an accessible product requires the involvement of people with disabilities throughout the process. Yes, before building that minimal viable product. Even better, by hiring people with disabilities, you will always have access to professionals.

    The reason there are so many gaps in accessibility is the lack of education and training. Companies need to train everyone, not just the product development team. Development teams can create accessible websites, but marketers can post videos without captions, graphic designers create low-contrast images, and salespeople publish PDF files that are inaccessible. If you do, all your hard work will be compromised.

    Accessibility is the responsibility of everyone.

    Accessibility awareness is on the rise, but is it turning into action? – TechCrunch Source link Accessibility awareness is on the rise, but is it turning into action? – TechCrunch

    The post Accessibility awareness is on the rise, but is it turning into action? – TechCrunch appeared first on California News Times.

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