TalkBack & Magnification Accessibility in Android 4.3+

Table of Contents


    Is Google closing the gap on Apple's mobile accessibility features? Now Android has magnification support for low vision users! With Android's open app ecosystem you can even install multiple accessible web browsers like Chrome & Firefox. See & Hear a demo of the latest assistive technologies in Android JellyBean 4.3+.

    Slideshow URL


    Paul J. Adam

    Deque Logo

    Accessibility Evangelist at Deque Systems, Inc.

    @pauljadam on Twitter


    Press the Left/Right Arrow Keys or Page Up/Down to navigate through slides, the Home key takes you home to the table of contents. Adjust text size in the Info dialog. Share this presentation on Twitter & Facebook.

    This slideshow has been developed with jQuery Mobile to create a universally accessible presentation that will work on any accessibility enabled device. PowerPoint & PDF formats are not universally accessible.


    TalkBack Logo

    TalkBack in the Google Play store.

    Nexus 4 (Android 4.2+) Accessibility Help (User Guide)

    TalkBack is an Accessibility Service that helps blind and vision-impaired users interact with their devices more easily.
    This application add spoken, audible, and vibration feedback to your device. It is a system application that was pre-installed on most device and is updated when the accessibility service is improved.
    This app is only activated if you explicitly turn on Accessibility.
    Steps to activate Accessibility:
    1. Go to Settings
    2. Select Accessibility
    3. (Android 3.2 and earlier) Enable Accessibility checkbox
    4. Enable TalkBack checkboxes
    5. (Android 4.0 and later) Enable explore-by-touch

    Hold hand over proximity sensor to silence TalkBack as opposed to iOS 2-finger tap.

    Enable TalkBack Confirmation Screen

    Installing scripts to enhance web accessibility is now on by default when you enable TalkBack. Progress! :)

    use talkback screen

    TalkBack Settings


    speech talkback settings

    Other Feedback

    Touch Exploration (A relatively new concept in TalkBack land, there used to be a D-Pad like a joystick on all Droids)


    Display Speech Output has bad contrast, looks very bad on white backgrounds.

    display speech output setting

    Vibration Feedback (Replaced Kickback)

    vibration feedback

    Accessibility Shortcuts

    a11y shortcuts settings

    Global Context Menu (kind of like a rotor in iOS but not)

    global context menu

    Android JellyBean Accessibility - by Kiran Kaja @kirankaja12

    Explore by Touch

    Explore by touch tutorial is basically the built in TalkBack user guide.

    explore by touch tutorial


    magnification gesture settings

    magnification example

    apps screen not magnified

    apps screen magnified

    The keyboard does not get magnified.

    android keyboard not magnified

    Enable screen magnification to easily zoom or pan the entire screen to get a closer look. Visually impaired users can now enter full-screen magnification with a triple-tap on the screen, and even type and interact with the device while zoomed in.

    Use magnification gestures - Nexus 7 help

    Some or all of this information applies only to Nexus 7 devices running Android 4.2.

    When this feature is turned on, you can temporarily magnify what’s on your screen or use magnification mode to easily zoom and pan your screen. (For users with low vision)

    Note: Triple-tap for magnification works everywhere except for the keyboard and navigation buttons.

    Temporarily magnify: Triple-tap & hold.
    Magnify & pan: Triple-tap & hold, then drag your finger.
    Toggle magnification mode in or out: Triple tap & release, or enter or exit an app to get out of magnification mode.
    While you're in magnification mode, you can:
    Pan: Drag two or more fingers across the screen.
    Adjust zoom level: Pinch or expand using two or more fingers.

    New Magnification Features in Android 4.2.2 - YouTube Video

    Issues with Magnification and TalkBack Running Together

    Magnification view does NOT follow TalkBack focus.

    When you are zoomed in and open another app you lose your zoom :(

    iOS does both of these items correctly.

    Large Text

    Adjust the system text size under the Display OR Accessibility Settings.

    text size

    large text settings

    large text shown

    Open App Ecosystem

    android alternative keyboards

    Home row heroes: alternative keyboard apps for Android

    Best Android Keyboards for Limited Dexterity (or anyone)

    Best Alternative Android Keyboards for the rest of us with fat fingers, poor dexterity, arthritis, repetitive stress injuries, paralysis, and other finger/hand limitations.

    Don't have to pay extra to tether like on iOS where you have to Jailbreak to do so!

    General Android Accessibility Recommendations

    Design - Patterns - Accessibility | Android Developers

    Fat Fingers - Use recommended touch target sizes

    48 dp is the recommended touch target size for on screen elements.

    Buttons larger than the minimum recommendations are appropriate for children with developing motor skills and people with manual dexterity challenges.

    Label visual UI elements meaningfully

    Label functional UI components that have no visible text: buttons, icons, tabs with icons, and icons with state (like stars).

    Use the contentDescription attribute to set the label.

    1. group
    2. all contacts
    3. favorites
    4. search
    5. action overflow button
    6. when starred: remove from favorites
      when not starred: add to favorties
    7. action overflow button
    8. text message

    Provide accessible alternatives for timed-out controls that disappear

    Icons or controls that disappear after a certain amount of time, e.g. Video player controls that fade out after 5 seconds.

    If controls fade out before a user focuses on them then a TalkBack user may not know they were there.

    You can also change the behavior of your app when accessibility services are turned on, e.g make sure that timed-out controls won't disappear.

    Use standard framework controls or enable TalkBack for custom controls

    Standard Android framework controls work automatically with accessibility services and have ContentDescriptions built in by default.

    User controlled system-wide large font size in Settings; using the default system font size in your application will enable the user's preferences in your app as well. Mark text and their associated containers to be measured in scale pixels.

    Your app may not have room for a user's large fonts or language settings, the text may get too large for the containers that hold it and be cut off.

    Try TalkBack Yourself!

    Turn on the TalkBack service in Settings > Accessibility and navigate your application.

    Browser & Web View App Accessibility

    Android has good support for WAI-ARIA and HTML5 Accessibility.

    I think it may be possible to set a web view app to render with Mozilla's Geko (Firefox) browser engine rather than Chrome's. Firefox web views are more accessible than Chrome.

    Follow WCAG 2.0 to make your websites and web view apps, e.g. PhoneGap, accessible to TalkBack users on Android.

    WCAG 2.0 Checklist that links to each understanding success criterion

    wcag checklist


    Captions are not supported in the default video player of Android 4.0 and below. MoboPlayer supports subtitles for Android 2.0+.

    Timed text tracks

    Android 4.1 Multimedia APIs

    The MediaPlayer now handles both in-band and out-of-band text tracks. In-band text tracks come as a text track within an MP4 or 3GPP media source. Out-of-band text tracks can be added as an external text source via addTimedTextSource() method.

    Live Examples Working on Android

    Captions DON'T seem to work in Full Screen!

    Android 4.4 KitKat Closed Captions API

    System-wide settings for closed captioning

    Android 4.4 now supports a better accessibility experience across apps by adding system-wide preferences for Closed Captioning. Users can go to Settings > Accessibility > Captions to set global captioning preferences, such as whether to show captions and what language, text size, and text style to use.

    YouTube's Native Android App = ONLY WORKING FULL SCREEN CC EXAMPLE!?

    youtube app cc button

    closed captions shown on the youtube app

    Testing for Accessibility with TalkBack

    Accessibility Testing Checklist | Android Developers

    Directional controls: Verify that the application can be operated without the use of a touch screen.
    Note: Keyboards and D-pads provide different navigation paths than accessibility gestures. While gestures allow users to focus on nearly any on-screen content, keyboard and D-pad navigation only allow focus on input fields and buttons.

    TalkBack audio prompts: UI controls have clear and accurate audio descriptions when TalkBack is enabled and controls are focused. Use directional controls to move focus between application layout elements.

    Explore by Touch prompts: UI controls have appropriate audio descriptions when Explore by Touch is enabled. There should be no regions where contents or controls do not provide an audio description.

    Touchable control sizes: All controls where a user can select or take an action must be a minimum of 48 dp (approximately 9mm) in length and width, as recommended by Android Design.

    Gestures work with TalkBack enabled: Verify that app-specific gestures, such as zooming images, scrolling lists, swiping between pages or navigating carousel controls continue to work when TalkBack is enabled. If these gestures do not function, then an alternative interface for these actions must be provided.

    No audio-only feedback: Audio feedback must always have a secondary feedback mechanism to support users who are deaf or hard of hearing, for example: A sound alert for the arrival of a message should also be accompanied by a system Notification, haptic feedback (if available) or another visual alert.

    Repetitive audio prompting: Check that closely related controls (such as items with multiple components in a list) do not simply repeat the same audio prompt. For example, in a contacts list that contains a contact picture, written name and title, the prompts should not simply repeat “Bob Smith” for each item.

    Audio prompt overloading or underloading: Check that closely related controls provide an appropriate level of audio information that enables users to understand and act on a screen element. Too little or too much prompting can make it difficult to understand and use a control.

    Basic TalkBack Testing Methods

    1. Enable TalkBack
    2. Check the Name, Role, Value, State of each element.
    3. Set focus to all UI elements in the app and make sure the accessible name (contentDescription) makes sense. Make sure text alternatives for images match fully.
    4. If UI element is actionable should it have a role like button or tab? Static text would not have a role. (Called traits on iOS, role in WAI-ARIA)
    5. Adjustable controls like sliders must have their current Value spoken to TalkBack.
    6. Is the current state of a control spoken? E.g. is this tab the selected tab? Is this element expanded or collapsed?
    7. Images that are purely for decoration (have no function) should not be focusable.
    8. Is there proper focus management when new content appears on the screen? E.g. when a dialog appears does the TalkBack focus go into the dialog? Is it trapped in the dialog? Or is the focus still stuck underneath the dialog? Is focus lost when the dialog is closed? Does focus return to the UI element that opened the dialog? When error messages appear are the spoken automatically by TalkBack?
    9. Is the focus order logical when swiping through elements or using directional controllers? Generallly follow the visual reading order, left to right, top to bottom.
    10. Is the TalkBack user aware of gestures specific to your app that they need to know to activate content or features? If those custom gestures conflict with TalkBack is there an alternative method to acheive the same function?

    Accessibility in Facebook for Android

    Accessibility Issues with the Facebook Native Android App & Google’s TalkBack Screen Reader

    Side Note: Twitter's android app has WAY more accessibility problems! Most all the buttons are not focusable and have no accessible names.

    Focus shown trapped underneath the full screen image dialog, TalkBack is focused on the Comment button.

    People Who Liked This dialog showing TalkBack speech output "Button 29 Unlabelled". The blue Friend Added Checked button and the grey Add Friend Plus buttons have no accessible names (contentDescription).

    The delete Feeling Emoticon button is unlabelled.

    The emoticon image should not be focusable because its text alternative is already adjacent (Feeling great). Unless you want to get more descriptive of the icon's facial expression. This image has no contentDescription so TalkBack speaks nothing when it's focused on. Focus should be removed.

    The Contacts Menu/Panel button is missing an expanded or collapsed state or 2 different accessible names like "Show Contacts Panel" & "Hide Contacts Panel". Could say "Contacts, expanded, button" "Contacts, collapsed, button".

    1. Help button on login screen has no name
    2. Friends, Messages, & Notifications button names are repeated twice. Inbox 0 new messages button, Inbox 0 new messages
    3. When there is a number of notifications, TalkBack reads 3 different focusable elements including the number “twenty” as a separate element. 
    4. 10 plus new stories has no button role
    5. Under the main navigation menu each settings cog image button is unlabeled but should not likely be focusable separately from the table cell button, if it remains focusable then it should have a proper contentDescription
    6. When the main navigation menu and contacts menu are expanded the Facebook stream content is still focusable with TalkBack and can be scrolled down. This is not the case for sighted users where the menu is treated as modal content. 
    7. Status, Photo, and Check In buttons are skipped over during linear swipe navigation. They can be focused on with explore by touch but they have no button roles. 
    8. Each person’s image and name are both focusable in the stream. The image element has no image role. It may be smarter to remove the focusability of the image so TalkBack does not announce each person’s name twice. 
    9. There is a “menu button” for each post in the stream. I would help to have a more descriptive accessible name for those “menu button”
    10. Every time TalkBack user gets to the end of the stream and swipes to the next element loading in the next view of the scroll area, after that view loads it reads “showing items x of x” but then when I swipe again my focus has been lost and now I’m focused at the very top on the main navigation button. 
    11. The text “10 likes 3 comments” has no button role so how does a TalkBack user know if it’s static text or actionable button elements?
    12. When I activated the 10 likes 3 comments modal dialog, TalkBack focus did not go into the dialog. Focus is still underneath the dialog.
    13. Elements like “load previous comments” that are buttons but have no button roles make it hard for TalkBack user to know whether an item is static text or actionable buttons. 
    14. In the comments dialog there is a blank “space” element spoken to TB when each com mentor’s name is focused on. 
    15. In comments dialog the like button has no button role
    16. In comments dialog focus goes to the commenter’s thumbnail image but nothing is spoken to TB, might be best to remove TB focus. 
    17. Post button under write a comment has no button role
    18. Under write a comment I’m able to get TB focus to the main view hidden underneath it when this should not be focusable
    19. No text alternative for the loading progress indicator when a dialog was displayed.
    20. In linear swipe navigation the TB focus skips right over the images inside friend’s status updates
    21. There’s no image roles spoken to TB when focused on an image
    22. There’s no indication when an image is full screen (expanded) or thumbnail size (collapsed) I’m not saying you have to add that text but there should be some text spoken to TB so the user knows when they’re in the 2 different image/thumbnail states
    23. The full screen image is not really focusable with TB, no accessible name is spoken
    24. When full screen image is displayed the TB focus still goes to content underneath the image. 
    25. You could possibly send an announcement to TB when the user hits the like button and the 1 like text animates onto screen so the TB user hears “1 like”, consider if you think it’s useful or if you think they should manually go check the number of likes. Something to think about. 
    26. Sometimes like buttons don’t have button roles, consider giving UI element that is actionable a specific semantic role. 
    27. In the People who like this dialog the 53 mutual friends text is read before the person’s name. The friend checked and friend add buttons are both unlabeled. The accessible name for each cell is just 53 mutual friends rather than the person’s name. There’s a < back arrow button in the people who like this dialog but it’s not focusable to TB. There are many ways for a sighted user to escape a dialog like this one, they can tap outside of it, they can drag it down, they can hit the < back arrow button, or hit the System Back button. A TB user can only hit the System Back button because all of those other methods are not focusable and have no accessible names/roles. I’m not saying you have to make all methods available to TB users, but at least one other than the system back button. 
    28. In the likes and comments dialog the top left Like button has no state (whether it’s been liked or not liked)
    29. Under the What are you doing? screen the delete button for something like a Feeling great emoticon has no label. 
    30. The Feeling great emoticon is focusable but does not need to be since it’s text alternative is already present, this image is considered decorative so it should not be focusable.  

    Native App Accessibility

    Develop - API Guides - Accessibility - Making Applications Accessible

    Labeling UI Elements


    Note: For EditText fields, provide an android:hint attribute instead of a content description, to help users understand what content is expected when the text field is empty. When the field is filled, TalkBack reads the entered content to the user, instead of the hint text.

    contentDescription on an EditText control is only read before text is typed into the field, once the field is emptied the contentDescription is no longer read. This is a reason why a hint is a better option. Even though both disappear as the accessible name once text is typed into the field the hint comes back into view when the field is emptied and it will be read again by TalkBack, not the case for contentDescription on EditText controls.

    Develop - Training - Implementing Accessibility - Developing Accessible Applications | Android Developers

    Add Content Descriptions

    Static Labels Use XML layout android:contentDescription

    Labels that won't change while using the app (such as "Next" or "Purchase") can be added via the XML layout by setting a UI element's android:contentDescription attribute:


    Dynamic Labels Use runtime method .setContentDescription()

    Base the content description on some context, such as the state of a toggle button, or a piece of selectable data like a list item. To edit the content description at runtime, use the setContentDescription() method:

    String contentDescription = "Select " + strValues[position];

    Don't overdo your labels

    Avoid the web-developer pitfall of labelling everything with useless information. For instance, don't set an application icon's content description to "app icon". That just increases the noise a user needs to navigate in order to pull useful information from your interface.

    Design for Focus Navigation (Directional D-Pad, & Keyboard)

    Enabling view focus


    If a view is not focusable by default, you can make it focusable in your layout file by setting the android:focusable attribute to true or by calling the its setFocusable() method.

    Controlling focus order

    Each UI control has 4 attributes, android:nextFocusUp, android:nextFocusDown, android:nextFocusLeft, and android:nextFocusRight, which you can use to designate the next view to receive focus when the user navigates in that direction.

    Note: You can modify the focus order of user interface components at runtime, using methods such as setNextFocusDownId() and setNextFocusRightId().

    Building Accessible Custom Views

    If your application requires a custom view component, you must do some additional work to ensure that your custom view is accessible. These are the main tasks for ensuring the accessibility of your view:

    Fire Accessibility Events

    If you write a custom view, make sure it fires events at the appropriate times. Generate events by calling sendAccessibilityEvent(int), with a parameter representing the type of event that occurred.

    As an example, if you want to extend an image view such that you can write captions by typing on the keyboard when it has focus, it makes sense to fire an TYPE_VIEW_TEXT_CHANGED event, even though that's not normally built into image views. The code to generate that event would look like this:

    public void onTextChanged(String before, String after) {
    if (AccessibilityManager.getInstance(mContext).isEnabled()) {

    Developing an Accessibility Service

    Develop - Training - Implementing Accessibility - Developing an Accessibility Service | Android Developers

    Respond to AccessibilityEvents

    public void onAccessibilityEvent(AccessibilityEvent event) {
    final int eventType = event.getEventType();
    String eventText = null;
    switch(eventType) {
    case AccessibilityEvent.TYPE_VIEW_CLICKED:
    eventText = "Focused: ";
    case AccessibilityEvent.TYPE_VIEW_FOCUSED:
    eventText = "Focused: ";

    eventText = eventText + event.getContentDescription();

    // Do something nifty with this text, like speak the composed string
    // back to the user.

    Providing a customized accessibility context

    There are some cases where accessibility services cannot get adequate information from the view hierarchy. An example of this is a custom interface control that has two or more separately clickable areas, such as a calendar control. In this case, the services cannot get adequate information because the clickable subsections are not part of the view hierarchy.

    In order to provide a virtual view hierarchy for a view, override the getAccessibilityNodeProvider() method in your custom view or view group and return an implementation of AccessibilityNodeProvider.

    Accessibility Developer Checklist

    Special Cases and Considerations

    Building Accessibility Services

    Develop - API Guides - Accessibility - Building Accessibility Services

    An accessibility service is an application that provides user interface enhancements to assist users with disabilities, or who may temporarily be unable to fully interact with a device. For example, users who are driving, taking care of a young child or attending a very loud party might need additional or alternative interface feedback.

    Android provides standard accessibility services, including TalkBack, and developers can create and distribute their own services. This document explains the basics of building an accessibility service.

    Making Applications Accessible | Android Developers

    Accessibility Testing Checklist | Android Developers


    Toast | Android Developers
    A toast is a view containing a quick little message for the user. The toast class helps you create and show those.

    Toast messages are spoken automatically by TalkBack. So this is when you need a message that both sighted and blind users can see or hear.

    Resources from Google

    Android Accessibility
    Accessibility | Android Developers
    android.view.accessibility | Android Developers
    Android Developers Blog: Accessibility: Are You Serving All Your Users?

    Accessibility Services in Android 4.3 APIs

    Making Android apps voice output accessible - by Henny Swan @iheni

    Draft BBC Mobile Accessibility Standards and Guidelines

    Android's Weak Accessibility API leaves it light years behind iOS/VoiceOver

    iOS accessibility API options

    There are no traits, no hints on all elements, etc. If you want a UI element to be spoken as a "button" to TalkBack then you must use a button or image button element since there is no button trait(role).

    No accessibilityViewIsModal like iOS, the API is just not nearly as robust!

    EditText elements can't have both a contentDescription and a hint! And as soon as you type some text the hint or contentDescription is NOT spoken.

    Android handles links embedded in a textview by using an earcon ding but no role/trait to indicate the separate elements. They're not separately focusable!

    Opening local context menu gives ability to activate separate links but this is not very obvious or documented much.

    local context menu links

    TalkBack users do not hear if something is actionable unless it's a button or input element.

    Tab controls do not indicate a tab role or a selected state.

    android studio screenshot


    Common Questions/Issues with Android Native Accessibility

    How do I hide an element from TalkBack so that it does not receive focus and no accessible name is announced?


    noHideDescendants - The view is NOT important for accessibility, nor are any of its descendant views.


    Stop images from being focusable with TalkBack by setting android:focusable=“false” or android:importantForAccessibility=“no”(which overrides :focusable on an ImageView)

    How do I send TalkBack focus to an element so that it's announced?


    Are there automated accessibility testing tools for Android?

    Android Lint

    Android Accessibility Testing and Fixing in 30 seconds

    How do TalkBack users dismiss a modal similar to the 2-finger Z gesture on iOS VoiceOver?

    Swipe down then left activates the Back button by default. This is under TalkBack settings, manage gestures.

    How to I send an announcement for TalkBack to speak to the user like when a screen changes?

    view.announceForAccessibility("Hello TalkBack World");

    Accessibility Videos from Google

    Accessibility Videos from Google Developers - YouTube
    Google I/O 2013 - Enabling Blind and Low-Vision Accessibility On Android
    Google I/O 2013 - Advancing Web Accessibility with ChromeVox
    ChromeVox for Web Accessibility
    Google I/O 2012 - Advancing Accessibility for the Web
    Google I/O 2012 - Making Android Apps Accessible
    Google I/O 2011: Creating Accessible Interactive Web Apps using HTML5
    Google I/O 2011: The YouTube Caption API, Speech Recognition, and WebVTT captions for HTML5
    Google I/O 2011: Leveraging Android Accessibility APIs To Create An Accessible Experience
    Google I/O 2011: Accessibility: Building Products that Everyone Can Use

    Accessible Android Browsers

    Accessible Client-side Form Validation with HTML5 & WAI-ARIA Demo 2

    WINNER = Firefox!!! Most robust accessibility of them all. Nightly build is the latest and greatest and supports aria-describedby. Best quick navigation options!

    2nd place = Default Browser app included by default (The browser app has a special local context menu not available in Firefox, control navigation is like quick nav for form elements)

    browser app local context menu

    3rd place = Chrome and Dolphin, they both seem to be accessible but have similar levels of bugginess (quite a bit!)

    TalkBack does tell you "edit text for telephone number" if it's an HTML5 input type=tel, have never seen this before.

    Required attributes for form controls do seem to announce to TalkBack

    What's New in Android 4.4 KitKat Accessibility API

    Android KitKat Accessibility - System-wide settings for closed captioning

    DevBytes: Android 4.4 Closed Captioning - YouTube

    Android 4.4 now supports a better accessibility experience across apps by adding system-wide preferences for Closed Captioning. Users can go to Settings > Accessibility > Captions to set global captioning preferences, such as whether to show captions and what language, text size, and text style to use.

    Enhanced Accessibility APIs

    Android 4.4 extends the accessibility APIs to support more precise structural and semantic description and observation of onscreen elements. With the new APIs, developers can improve the quality of accessible feedback by providing accessibility services with more information about on-screen elements.

    In accessibility nodes, developers can now determine whether a node is a popup, get its input type, and more. You can also use new APIs to work with nodes that contain grid-like information, such as lists and tables. For example, you can now specify new supported actions, collection information, live region modes, and more.

    New accessibility events let developers more closely follow the changes that are taking place in window content, and they can now listen for changes in the touch exploration mode on the device.

    content/browser/accessibility/ - Issue 67473013: Support KitKat accessibility APIs. - Code Review

    @@ -25,12 +25,20 @@ const char* BOOL_ATTRIBUTES[] = {
    + "collection",
    + "collection_item",
    + "content_invalid",
    + "dismissable",
    + "heading",
    + "hierarchical",
    + "multiline",
    + "range",
    @@ -41,7 +49,18 @@ const char* STRING_ATTRIBUTES[] = {

    const char* INT_ATTRIBUTES[] = {
    - "item_count"
    + "item_count",
    + "row_count",
    + "column_count",
    + "row_index",
    + "row_span",
    + "column_index",
    + "column_span",
    + "input_type",
    + "live_region_type",
    + "range_min",
    + "range_max",
    + "range_current_value",

    @@ -57,17 +76,24 @@ void AccessibilityTreeFormatter::AddProperties(
    dict->SetString("class", android_node->GetClassName());

    // Bool attributes.
    - dict->SetBoolean("focusable", android_node->IsFocusable());
    - dict->SetBoolean("focused", android_node->IsFocused());
    - dict->SetBoolean("clickable", android_node->IsClickable());
    - dict->SetBoolean("editable_text", android_node->IsEditableText());
    dict->SetBoolean("checkable", android_node->IsCheckable());
    dict->SetBoolean("checked", android_node->IsChecked());
    + dict->SetBoolean("clickable", android_node->IsClickable());
    + dict->SetBoolean("collection", android_node->IsCollection());
    + dict->SetBoolean("collection_item", android_node->IsCollectionItem());
    dict->SetBoolean("disabled", !android_node->IsEnabled());
    - dict->SetBoolean("scrollable", android_node->IsScrollable());
    + dict->SetBoolean("dismissable", android_node->IsDismissable());
    + dict->SetBoolean("editable_text", android_node->IsEditableText());
    + dict->SetBoolean("focusable", android_node->IsFocusable());
    + dict->SetBoolean("focused", android_node->IsFocused());
    + dict->SetBoolean("heading", android_node->IsHeading());
    + dict->SetBoolean("hierarchical", android_node->IsHierarchical());
    + dict->SetBoolean("invisible", !android_node->IsVisibleToUser());
    + dict->SetBoolean("multiline", android_node->IsMultiLine());
    + dict->SetBoolean("range", android_node->IsRangeType());
    dict->SetBoolean("password", android_node->IsPassword());
    + dict->SetBoolean("scrollable", android_node->IsScrollable());
    dict->SetBoolean("selected", android_node->IsSelected());
    - dict->SetBoolean("invisible", !android_node->IsVisibleToUser());

    content/browser/accessibility/ - Issue 67473013: Support KitKat accessibility APIs. - Code Review

    + // New KitKat APIs
    + Java_BrowserAccessibilityManager_setAccessibilityNodeInfoKitKatAttributes(
    + env, obj, info,
    + node->CanOpenPopup(),
    + node->IsContentInvalid(),
    + node->IsDismissable(),
    + node->IsMultiLine(),
    + node->AndroidInputType(),
    + node->AndroidLiveRegionType());
    + if (node->IsCollection()) {
    + Java_BrowserAccessibilityManager_setAccessibilityNodeInfoCollectionInfo(
    + env, obj, info,
    + node->RowCount(),
    + node->ColumnCount(),
    + node->IsHierarchical());
    + }
    + if (node->IsCollectionItem() || node->IsHeading()) {
    + Java_BrowserAccessibilityManager_setAccessibilityNodeInfoCollectionItemInfo(
    + env, obj, info,
    + node->RowIndex(),
    + node->RowSpan(),
    + node->ColumnIndex(),
    + node->ColumnSpan(),
    + node->IsHeading());
    + }
    + if (node->IsRangeType()) {
    + Java_BrowserAccessibilityManager_setAccessibilityNodeInfoRangeInfo(
    + env, obj, info,
    + node->AndroidRangeType(),
    + node->RangeMin(),
    + node->RangeMax(),
    + node->RangeCurrentValue());
    + }

    Firefox for Android

    New features for TalkBack users in Firefox for Android 24

    What’s New for TalkBack users in Firefox 25 for Android

    First round of accessibility support for Android in mobile Firefox | Marco’s accessibility blog
    Quick Navigation keys now in nightly builds of Firefox native for Android | Marco’s accessibility blog

    List of quick navigation keys for accessible Firefox for Android
    Key Description
    a Moves to next named anchor
    b Moves to next button
    c Moves to next combobox or listbox
    e Moves to next text entry or password field
    f Moves to next form field (button, combobox, text entry, radio button, slider, checkbox)
    g Moves to next graphic
    h Moves to next heading of any level
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    headings navigationlandmarks quick nav

    Support for TalkBack’s Jelly Bean Explore By Touch now in Firefox for Android nightlies | Marco’s accessibility blog

    firefox for android nightly

    How to use TalkBack support in Firefox for Android for accessibility


    picture of many android phones representing fragmentation

    Buy your phone directly from Google if you want to get the latest system updates without having to wait for your cellular carrier to approve them.

    If you buy an Android phone from HTC it has the HTC Sense custom UI which may have a broken accessibility experience, same problem with Samsung TouchWiz. If you have one of these carrier phones you'd have to install a custom ROM to get to a stock Google UI.

    Devices on Google Play - Either get a Nexus device or a Google Play edition (HTC One or Samsung Galaxy S 4)

    Other Android Accessibility Resources


    Ted Drake (@ted_drake)

    Marco Zehe (@MarcoInEnglish)

    Eitan Isaacson (@eeejay)


    User alanv - Stack Overflow (Software engineer at Google working on the Android platform.)

    Support & Discussion Groups

    eyes-free Google Group

    TalkBack vs. VoiceOver

    Switching to Android full-time – an experiment by @MarcoInEnglish

    If I replaced my iPhone with the Nexus 4 full-time at this point ... It would be like stepping back a few years in accessibility

    Google Search Results

    ios voiceover accessibility = About 221,000 results

    android talkback accessibility = About 154,000 results

    Unlike Apple, all of Google's default installed apps are NOT accessible, e.g. Calendar, Gallery, Explore by touch NOT working in Voice Search.

    No TalkBack spoken feedback to indicate that you must double tap outside of a popup menu to dismiss it. iOS does this.

    android calendar is not accessible

    back button changes to the dismiss keyboard button but it always just says BACK

    What's Cool about Android!

    The Jedi mind trick hover your hands over proximity sensor to silence speech :)

    Shake for continuous read

    Better magnification gestures, 1-finger triple tap vs 3-finger double tap on iOS... who can really fit 3 fingers on their iPhone? Better multitasking gestures with TalkBack than iOS!


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