Blind or vision impaired

Qantas improves in-flight accessibility

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Australia’s national airline has drastically improved the experience of flying for blind and vision impaired passengers by making the devices used on domestic flights to view in-flight entertainment accessible.

Qantas uses Apple iPads for its Q-Streaming system on 17 domestic routes. Until recently, the iPad’s extensive accessibility features were unable to be turned on. This meant that although iPads include screen readers and other assistive technologies, passengers with disabilities were unable to use them.

Following feedback from customers and potential customers, Qantas has now unlocked the iPad’s VoiceOver screen reader.


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Audio desciption at the Adelaide Festival

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The annual Adelaide Festival, considered one of the world’s best celebrations of the arts, kicks off on 28 February with a program full of audio described events for people who are blind or vision impaired.

Five theatre performances will be audio described by newly established Adelaide access company 


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Ticketing websites inaccessible, report finds

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Music fans with disability face constant obstacles when buying tickets for performances and festivals, according to a report released by UK charity Attitude is Everything (AiE).

While three quarters of disabled people prefer to buy tickets online, only 20 per cent of venue websites cater for their access needs. Instead, people must rely on using premium rate phone lines, prove their disability and discuss their accessibility needs each time they buy tickets.


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Most accessible game of 2013 announced

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The AbleGamers Charity, an international authority on video and computer game accessibility, has announced its awards for games and gaming devices released in 2013. The annual awards recognise games, consoles and controllers that were designed to include gamers with disability.

The awards named Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn the most accessible mainstream game of the year. The game allows gamers with physical and sensory disabilities to play online in a fully-accessible format. Producer of the game, Square Enix, confirmed that player feedback and continual updates are important parts of ensuring that the game is accessible. 

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Coming back to Facebook

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Guest contributor and screen reader user Andrew Devenish-Meares shares his experience of giving Facebook another go.

Quite some time ago I just gave up on Facebook.  Being blind it was just too hard to deal with, navigation was awful, there were parts of the iPhone app I just couldn't use.  I deleted my account and left.

Since that time, Facebook has been working on accessibility.  The nightmarish navigation shown in the Access iQ video is gone, and the iOS app has undergone some major changes.

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