Saturday, September 24, 2011

What does iPhone 5 and iOS 5 Mean for Assistive Technology?

Mock up of possible iPhone 5 design

Apple's next iPhone is rumored to be announced in a couple of weeks. What will the new iPhone mean for assistive technology? The iPhone is a powerful tool for people with a variety of disabilities. It has built in text-to-speech, support for braille displays and much more. How will Apple's announcement effect you? Read on to find out.

At the event Apple will most likely unveil at least one iPhone with a faster processor, more RAM and a better camera. Apple may surprise us with more features as well, but we'll focus on those three. A faster processor means that apps will run faster enabling apps such as Read2Go and ZoomReader to work better and faster. The faster processor will also open the door to exiciting new assistive technology apps. A better camera will benefit people using OCR apps, magnification apps, money reader apps and much more. The new camera will be able to recognize text more accurately and magnify printed text with higher resolution. The new iPhone will run iOS 5 which includes many new accessibility features.

iOS is the most accessible mobile operating system to date and with iOS 5 it will get even better. iOS 5 will run on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Apple has said that iOS 5 will available in the fall. iOS 5 will include many new accessibility features to help make the device easier to use. Hearing aid compatibility will be built into the iPhone allowing people to hear the iPhone better. Another new feature allows users to select text and then have it read back to you using a built in text-to-speech voice. Another rumored feature will convert a users voice into text for easier text input. iOS 5 will also be able to use the iPhone flash as an indicator light which will be helpful to deaf users. Custom vibrations will allow users to set their own vibration patterns to quick identify who is calling. Yet another cool feature called assistive touch will help users with low motor still access their iOS device. To learn more about assistive touch click here. There are even more accessibility features coming in iOS 5. iOS 5 will include a feature for every type of user and will be a free upgrade. To learn more about iOS click here, here and here.

Apple's announcement will be many new exciting bring new assitive technology features to users. Click read more below to see a video about iOS 5. Stay tuned for more information about iOS 5 and the new iPhone.

For a captioned version of this video click here.


  1. Three months later, this video is still not captioned properly. It's odd that a video about accessibility isn't accessible!

  2. I agree that it is terrible that this video is not captioned. This video is from Apple's YouTube channel and there for I cannot add captions. I have written to Apple to request that they caption their videos and for a text transcript of this particular video in the mean time. If you would like your voice to be heard email and kindly request captioned videos. Apple is a leader in the field of accessibility and I believe this should extend to their promotional videos.

  3. A captioned version can be found at

  4. Nice review.... NEW IPHONE 5---->>

  5. The iPhone 5 continues to lead customer satisfaction surveys with its ease of use and overall user experience, something the latest version of Apple's mobile operating platform, iOS 6, is likely to bolster, thanks to improvements to its mapping system, with Apple-designed cartography and turn-by-turn navigation.

  6. Why is ios5 popping up on my ipod touch blocking me from down loading oovoo,how can i get this to work

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