Windows 10 Accessibility: Making Things Easier


Microsoft is promising a raft of new and improved accessibility features with the release of Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 15025 for PC to Windows Insiders. The operating system’s features include: magnifier screen options, text or visual alternatives for audio, typing via an on-screen keyboard, more keyboard shortcuts, narration of text and speech-activation control, to name a few. What is significant about this Build 15025 launch is that those using Windows Insider can test the improvements before the general release.

For businesses, that offers the chance to test the system and work out any issues before it is adopted throughout the company. It’s a significant advantage when hardware such as Braille tablets need to be attached, synchronized and checked with the existing systems before roll out. What’s more, Microsoft has requested feedback from both companies and private users so it can improve Windows 10 Build 15025’s new features before it goes on general release.

It is a marketing win-win. Loyalty is assured when users feel their views have been sought after, and they’ve had significant input into the final product. Moreover, for any major software release there’s an inevitable public backlash against glitches, compatibility with existing systems and usability issues. By releasing the product to a representative group for testing, Microsoft is pre-empting this negative backlash as well as ensuring Build 15025’s success.

It is also an accessibility win-win. Users with impairments will benefit from smart new features such as Ease of Access; a mono setting for audio output that allows the visually impaired to listen with one headphone, to information on the screen while having a conversation in real-time. It’s the type of function that is invaluable during a meeting or presentation and that would have in the past, been problematic requiring an earphone adapter. Simple yet useful additions such as this help remove the disadvantages of those with accessibility needs, and that’s something that benefits everybody.

If you would like to discuss how to cater to impairment needs throughout your company’s technology and  communications, please do get in touch with Amnet’s experts.