It's still several months until Google releases the next version of the Android operating system, but we are already learning some details about future accessibility improvements and changes. According to the Android N for Developers site, Android N, as it is now being called, will include vision settings on the device's welcome screen. Previously, users could activate Talkback by performing a two-finger gesture on this screen, but there was no way to enable other features including magnification support and font sizes. We are unsure if a gesture or shortcut is also available for these additional features.
The new Screen Zoom feature described here allows users to set the display size to a specific number of pixels, with a minimum of 320, which is the width of a typical 4-inch phone. s. Lowering the number of pixels will enlarge everything on the screen including the notification area. For instance, a user could choose a 320 pixel display area for a larger tablet and essentially enlarge everything without the need for constant maneuvering.
Anecdotally, some users are reporting more responsiveness with the TalkBack screen reader when testing the preview. Plus, the links below describe a large list of other changes that will be included. Often, TalkBack and other accessibility changes arrive separately from the official Android update, so it s quite possible that more changes are on the horizon.
Users of Google-branded devices including the Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P and Nexus 9 among others can opt in to receive the developer preview now. The release is intended for developers and tested, and not for use on someone's primary device or phone. You can go here to learn more about the preview or sign up.
Issues can be reported using a web form. Android N is expected to be released later this summer.
Improved responsiveness wouldn't be hard, since Talkback has only gotten slower recently.
You must be logged in to post comments.
J.J. Meddaugh is an experienced technology writer and computer enthusiast. He is a graduate of Western Michigan University with a major in telecommunications management and a minor in business. When not writing for Blind Bargains, he enjoys travel, playing the keyboard, and meeting new people.