Earlier this week Amazon released the Kindle Fire, a 7 inch touch screen tablet at a cost of $199. The Kindle Fire has a great web browser called silk that claims to load web pages faster then other tablets. The Kindle Fire runs a variant of the Android operating system with a custom user interface. With a great price and fast web browser is the Kindle Fire accessible to people with disabilities.
Unfortunately, the Kindle Fire does not have accessibility features. Unlike the iPad the Kindle Fire does not have text-to-speech, braille display support or mono audio. Not to mention a number of new accessibility features in iOS 5. To learn more about iOS 5 click here. The Kindle Fire may be a great tablet for the main stream market but unfortunately is not accessible for disabled users. Below is the National Federation for the Blinds (NFB.org) condemnation of the Kindle.
"Dr. Marc Maurer, President of the National Federation of the Blind, said: “Blind Americans have repeatedly asked Amazon to include accessibility for the blind in its Kindle product line. The feasibility of including accessibility in similar products has been demonstrated. The Department of Education and the Department of Justice have made it clear that Kindle devices cannot be purchased by educational institutions, libraries, and other entities covered by this country’s disability laws unless the devices are fully accessible. Despite all this, Amazon has released a brand new Kindle device, the Kindle Fire, which cannot be used by people who are blind. Enough! We condemn this latest action by Amazon and reiterate that we will not tolerate technological discrimination. The National Federation of the Blind seeks nothing less than equal access to all technology for blind people. It is one of the most critical civil rights issues facing blind Americans in the twenty-first century, and we will do everything in our power to see that this right is secured.”To read more about accessible e-readers click here. Click read more below to watch a video about the Kindle Fire.