In a blog post, Microsoft has taken a walk down memory lane and discussed its history of offering accessibility. The company also points to the future and what customers can expect. Some new additions have also been announced, such as a new Microsoft Accessibility website and the KNFB Reader app.
The latter of those additions is a Windows 10 app built by Microsoft and the National Federation of the Blind and Sensotec.
Users can already download the application, which allows people with print disabilities to get content by photographing the document. KNFB Readers concerts the image to text, which can be read aloud in synthesized speech.
Alternatively, the content can be connected to a refreshable Braille display. Microsoft says the underlying technology can use audio and vibration to place the camera for a perfect image. The app is available in the Microsoft Store at an introductory limited time price of $19.99.
Microsoft has also announced a new Microsoft Accessibility website. The website features a design overhaul and has been expanded. In its blog post, Microsoft says it built the site based entirely on customer feedback.
Using the feedback allowed the company to enhance accessibility across Office 365, Windows 10, Cloud & Enterprise, and Xbox One.
Improving Accessibility for Disabled Users
Microsoft points out it has worked hard in the last year to improve its Disability Answer Desk. The company has made more chat options available. To highlight the changes made, Microsoft presented the above video of actress Marlee Matlin using the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk. She receives help in setting up a Surface Pro 4 while using American Sign Language (ASL).
The company is promising more accessibility features for the future. Cloud & Enterprise solutions getting accessibility improvements in the coming months include Dynamics 365, Power BI, and Visual Studio.