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ACCESSIBILITY 101 FOR THE SOFTWARE INDUSTRY

Whether you are creating business software or the next hot mobile game, accessibility goes hand-in-hand with good design.

REAL USERS. REAL ISSUES.

  • A tablet at the doctor’s office has a sign-in program that disables the pinch-to-zoom feature, making it impossible for a woman with low vision to fill out her medical history.
  • An online learning portal uses automatically-generated captions on their videos, leaving a deaf student at a loss for words. Literally.
  • The newest, coolest Candy Crush clone lacks a colorblind mode, leaving many users unable to distinguish red bubbles from green ones.
  • An employee develops a serious hand tremor and is unable to complete his daily duties because the software program requires the use of a mouse.
cell phone with app icons floating out of screen

SECTION 508 & YOU

The Law:  Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act

First passed: 1973

Recently refreshed: 2017

Applies to: Software companies selling to the federal government

Requires: Information and communications technology (ICT) must be accessible to persons with disabilities.

Read more about the Section 508 Refresh in our free whitepaper.

phone software system

THE CVAA & YOU

The Law: The 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA)

First passed: 2010

Applies to: Software companies

Requires: Advanced communications services (ACS) and products should be accessible by people with disabilities.

Read more about the CVAA.

NOT ACCESSIBLE? THAT'S RISKY BUSINESS.

LEGAL RISK

The #1 reason motivating most of our clients. (It's okay if that's what gets you in the door.) Nobody wants to be on the receiving end of a demand letter or lawsuit.

MARKET RISK

People with disabilities want to shop, bank, travel, and learn too! And on top of that, more and more procurement departments are adding accessibility to their must-have checklists.

BRAND RISK

Accessibility cases are also tried in the court of public opinion. Word spreads quickly in the community when an organization values accessibility—or doesn't.

hands on braille computer display

WHAT IS ACCESSIBILITY?

Digital accessibility refers to the ability of users with disabilities to effectively use information technology (IT) systems including websites, mobile or web-based applications, software, and hardware. Digital accessibility is generally concerned with ensuring that IT systems are designed in such a way that they interact appropriately with assistive technologies.

Assistive technologies can include:

  • Screen readers, Braille keypads, or screen magnification software so users who are blind or low vision can read your content.
  • Voice recognition software that helps those with mobility disabilities (even arthritis) navigate the web and type using only their voice.
  • Head pointers and switch devices that allow those with more limited movement navigate without using their hands or a traditional mouse.
1 in 5 people has a disability that affects their daily life.

WHY ACCESSIBILITY?

Some of our elders remember the days when a computer filled an entire room. Now, we have computers in our pockets. So many aspects of our lives are made easier by technology.

Yet, those with disabilities are often left out when hardware, software, websites, and apps are designed without a thought for their needs.

By some estimates, one in five people has a disability that affects their daily life. Having equal access to technology has a profound, enabling effect for people with disabilities.

TALK TO AN EXPERT TODAY

Contact us today for a free, 30-minute consultation with an accessibility expert in the software industry.