This blog is about how the world is viewed by the visual and the visually impaired. The intent of this blog is to bring the two worlds together. It is administered by two fabulous sisters, Toni, who is sighted and Robin, who became visually impaired in 2002 at the age of 18 due to misdiagnosis.
Saturday, August 31, 2013
Accessibility With Comcast TV
Whether we like to admit it or not, TV consumes many hours of a person’s life; it is a tool for relaxation. When you think about it, just like music, TV has several options for a person to choose from that is in accordance with their mood. TV can uplift a person or make them feel validated when sad. In the midst of TV’s popularity, people have adopted various rituals while engaging in this pastime. Such rituals include, vegging out on the couch, exercising, sitting in the bed, cleaning, etc. Whatever the case may be, millions of people watch TV everyday. How many times have you turned on the TV and flicked through the channels or used the guide to find a good show? It’s an easy task, to which many do not think twice about doing. However, for me and other blind/visually impaired individuals, it is not such an easy task. In fact, speaking for myself, it can be quite daunting. Whenever I am trying to find something to watch/listen to, I really have to pay attention to sound, so that I can try to decipher the show/movie. Some channels may announce the upcoming show or movie, while others just flash the name across the screen, which frustrates me. This is why I absolutely love my Apple TV because I can easily navigate show and movie titles without sighted assistance, all thanks to VoiceOver. Well my friends, it seems as though in addition to Apple’s accessibility efforts, Comcast is trying to make an accessibility mark too. Taking their blind/visually impaired customers into consideration, Comcast has developed a talking TV guide to make channel surfing for those without sight easier. The program might even incorporate a selection of synthetic voices that the user can choose from. The program is still being tested, but hopefully, it will be released sometime next year. YAY!!! This makes me happy because one the program is made available, I don’t have to play the guessing game anymore. So, applause to Comcast!!! To learn more about the talking TV guide and how it was developed check out an article by the Philadelphia Inquirer: http://articles.philly.com/2013-08-29/business/41542138_1_guide-disabilities-act-comcast-corp
Posted by Robin at 8/31/2013