Huge accessibility problems with all apps and screen readers

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    Jesse J.

    Hello Claus,

    We've seen that you've posted this message as a support ticket as well, and our Bluesound Support Crew will be looking to provide you with a response in the support ticket you have started.

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    Mat

    Could bluesound please update us in the forum on what, if anything, has occured in general in relation to this issue?

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  • Hi Mat

    In late 2016 we have added Voice Over accessibility in basic functions to navigate the App. Drop us a note at support@bluesound.com for a full listing of features available.

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    Mat

    Thanks.  This is great.

    In my experience very few companies ever consider this and very few bother to look at it later on.

    To the extent that Bluesound has actually done any work in this area, it ought to be commended.

    though of course accessibility is one of those things that needs to be comprahensive ...

    So when I can I will have a look at this a bit more to see how comprahensive the access is, since sometimes with apps, the bulk of the navigation is accessible but some of the context menus, icons etc. are not always so accessible.
    i.e. do the play/pause, mute, fwd/rev icons and media type icons have proper alt text so they are read correctly?   these are the sorts of things we often see absent in otherwise accessible apps.

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    Claus Thøgersen

    The current iOS app can be used like most other apps it is mostly usable but technically not 100 percent accessible. In version 2.0 of the app, it when from in practice  unusable to usable. Some things were made more usable in 2.12, however other things took a step backwards unfortunately. It will be interesting to see what happens when the next major upgrade of the app is released.

    Claus   

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  • Hi Claus

    Thanks for the feedback - we continue to try and move forward in this area. I have forwarded your feedback to our QA team to evaluate and look at.

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    Mat

    What Claus says does not surprise me, but it is good to hear that some efforts are being made. what often happens is that accessibility issues either get forgotten or left behind in the race for delivery of new versions... some things make it in and other things drop off the priority list.

    What is often useful is to get some user testing done with users of voiceover - or at least obtain the assistance of a couple of blind voice over users to give detailed feedback on the different controls and icons that are in the app. This would give real-life feeback to the issues so you know what needs to be done.

    Also if you get a video/audio recording of people struggeling to use the app in certain ways, this can become a great communication piece to decision makers to get behind the idea of improving things and making sure issues do get tracked to delivery without being lost in the noise of everything else that goes on in design and development.

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    Claus Thøgersen

    The development team on the iOS app has shown that they are capable of implementing accessibility so a lot of showing the problems makes no sense. With an evolving app the important thing is that testing for accessibility is done both to ensure previous accessibility is not broken in a new update, and to solve outstanding problems, and finally to ensure new features are acccessible. Taking feedback from Bluesound Voiceover users seriously can solve all these problems. What could be really useful would be for some of us to get into beta testing, but I do not know if Bluesound has any beta testers outside the organisation.

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  • Avatar
    Tony W. - Product Support Manager

    Hi Claus

    We do not have a public facing Beta Test program but if yourself and Mat are willing, please feel free to send findings to support@bluesound.com. Please feel free to put in subject line ATTN QA: Accessibility Testing so we can fast track your feedback for future consideration.

    Thank you for your efforts and for #LivingHiFi

    Tony Williamson
    Product Support Manager
    The BluOS Support Crew
    support@bluesound.com
    1-855-531-4666

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  • Avatar
    Mat

    something for this thread perhaps...

    I just saw in the release notes for BluOS 2.14.5 the following:

    Other enhancements include support for voice accessibility  in  the  BluOS  app  for  iOS  (VoiceOver)  and  Android  (TalkBack),

    Can you please inform as to what specifically this enhancement is?  I know that voiceover has worked in the bluos app before, so am not sure what enhancements have been made in this specific release.

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  • Avatar
    Tony W. - Product Support Manager

    Hi Mat

    We have made some significant improvements here as not all screens were completed and there were significant gaps.

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  • Avatar
    Mat

    Thanks Tony.  I am glad things are improving.  i can say that using voiceover there are a few more things to look at.  some of the icons in the select speaker screen still read as 'followme' and the more choices icon sometimes does not appear.  i am also having a bit of difficulty accessing the play queue on teh ios app... nothing i seem to do with voiceover gets me there.  when i select the icon that says play queue it seems to take me to the menu instead.
    but it is good to hear that efforts are being made in accessibility.
    bluesound wifi speakers are still be my prefered choice over others because of the real buttons on the flex and because of the sound quality and battery availability.

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  • Avatar
    Claus Thøgersen

    Hi,

    The problem with the play que is that when you open the screen by tapping the current track in the buttom of the main screen, the play que button, is just under the "open menu" button in the top right corner, however if you swipe left or right between the controls voiceover skips the play que button, you have to know where it is on the screen find it by placing your finger on the button and press it. When you do that it seems as if you do not see the que but the same screen as before. Sometimes it helps to scroll down a screen other times this does not work. The best way to show the que is to use 3d touch on the icon on the home screen.

    One thing that would be really helpfull would be to have headings marking among songs, albums, and singles and eps when you are viewing an artist e.g. on Tidal. I also think this works the same way wwhen you browse your own collection stored locally.

    One other feature that would be really good would be to get the zigzag gesture to work on screens where you have a back button to go up one level:
    https://developer.apple.com/library/content/featuredarticles/ViewControllerPGforiPhoneOS/SupportingAccessibility.html

    And of course the magic tap to stop and start playing would be fantastic.

    Unfortunately I do not have more than one Bluesound player, so I cannot check the grouping of players, a screen where there  has been problems earlier.

    Claus
        

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    Claus Thøgersen

    I just checked the Android app and this is not accessible at all! In my part of the world Voiceover is most important but it would of course be nice to also be able to use android devices.

    Claus

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    Tony W. - Product Support Manager

    Thank you Claus

    I have forwarded your feedback to our Engineering Team to look into.

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