As part of our CSUN coverage, J.J. did an interview with Peter Korn from Amazon. part of that interview featured Amazon's new screen reader called VoiceView for Fire Tablets. Amazon has now launched a preview of VoiceView for Amazon Fire TV.
Available as part of the latest over-the-air software update, the VoiceView screen reader for Fire TV can be activated by pressing the "back" and "menu" keys on the remote once the new update is installed. Once activated, you should hear the TV say "VoiceView ready". Amazon reports that the screen reader will give access to all menus and settings on the TV, as well as to the on-screen text found in the video content. Upon first launch of VoiceView, the user is presented with a tutorial that will get them oriented to the remote and the screen reader itself. In addition, certain screens on the Fire TV have a description of the text on the screen the first time they are encountered. If you would like to hear the description again, simply press the "menu" button. Amazon reports that this is a preview only, and that it is part of a more comprehensive work in progress. Follow the source link for further information.Source: iSee - David Woodbridge Technology Blog
As happy as I am to see this, I really hope Amazon is working on making their music software accessible on both windows and mac. I have purchased over 500 songs from their Mp3 catalog, and now I can't redownload any of it. I also can't upload any of my music to play on the echo, because the uploader is totally inaccessible. As well as making the fire products accessible, I really hope they fix this.
mitmee_pie Wednesday, 01-Jun-2016 5:56 PM ET:
This is great news, but there seems to be a catch. Based on this news, I ordered two fire TV sticks on Memorial day. Setting them up has been unexpectedly difficult. I finally got one of them up and running with Voice View, but the second refuses to install the necessary software update. Acording to the Amazon representative I just finished speaking to, the update is rolling out over the next couple of weeks, so there's no way to force the update. My device will update only when it's able to based on its serial number, and she had no estimated date for when that might happen. It just baffles me that one of them is updated and working while the other remains completely inaccessible. I've put the functional fire stick on my primary TV, and suppose that I'll just try to check the bedroom TV periodically to see if voice view can be activated. If anyone knows of a way to force updates, or has more accurate info on what may be going on, I would sincerely appreciate it. If it matters, my step dad and I restored the non-functioning fire stick to factory defaults in hopes of forcing the update during setup, but it didn't help. Anyway, I just thought I'd share my experience so that people are forwarned that the update might not be available right away.
darknexus Thursday, 02-Jun-2016 09:24 AM ET:
Cool. Excellent news. I was wondering if they'd extend VoiceView to their other devices, and I'm glad to see they are.
Peg Jolene Sunday, 05-Jun-2016 11:30 PM ET:
Happy to say that VoiceView works on our Fire TV Stick. I successfully used it on Friday June 3, and I belive it was updated about May 20. Looking forward to possibly using the Fire TV and voice remote with a future purchase. Not ready for prime time yet - smile! Was a nice surprise that it actually worked as we've had the Fire TV stick for quite some time.
kdmattingly Wednesday, 08-Jun-2016 09:58 AM ET:
Got mine on June 6 and my daughter helped set it up last night. The voice is good, can't open my apps, Netflix opens but isn't accessible. It does need work but it is a very good start.
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