All Articles by Steven Aquino | iMore

All Articles by Steven Aquino

How the new App Store can push accessibility forward

The App Store in iOS 11 could be an incredible asset for promoting accessibility.

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Three software features I want to see in the 2017 iPad Pro

While Apple might be updating their iPad Pro lineup this spring, there are three key things I want to see from this summer's software updates as well

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Three things I want to see in the 2017 iPad Pro

The calendar has turned to March, and with it comes rumors aplenty about new iPads and a spring Apple event.

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Apple's October event puts accessibility center stage

To me, Apple's October event had a clear theme: accessibility.

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iPhone 7 is the future of tactile accessibility

The iPhone 7's haptic feedback improvements are a huge step forward for people with disabilities.

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What losing the headphone jack would mean for accessibility

We don't yet know with certainty that Apple is removing the headphone jack from the [next iPhones. Assuming rumors are true, it still remains to be seen why the company would decide to do so, and more importantly, how they intend to replace it.

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Siri, artificial intelligence, and accessibility

The magic and frustration of voice assistants and artificial intelligence when it comes to accessibility.

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Accessibility is why I'm still wearing my Apple Watch

Serenity Caldwell's recent piece on why she's still wearing her Apple Watch inspired me to write my own take on why I'm still wearing mine.

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Embracing the iPad Pro in all its ginormous glory

Recently I had an opportunity to play with an iPad Pro at one of the Apple Stores here in San Francisco.I was excited for this hands-on time, albeit brief, as I have long preferred working from an iPad over a traditional laptop.

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Apple TV and accessibility

Apple's revamped [Apple TV][1] is a big deal, what with its focus on apps, gaming, and the Siri Remote. I'm excited about it—and I don't even have a high-def TV at home to plug it into. I'm tempted to rectify that, however, with the advent of the new box, as it's sure to be a staunch upgrade from the dreadful UI of my AT&T U-Verse box. From an accessibility perspective, channel surfing and getting program information is difficult, thanks to small text and cluttered interfaces.

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How Apple could make iOS accessibility even better

As great as all the advancements have been, there remain parts of iOS that I feel could stand improvement in terms of visual accessibility.

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Apple Watch makes Apple Pay even better for accessibility

Apple Pay is emblematic of what Apple does best: integrating hardware and software in a seamless, easy to use way that truly does "just work." It feels like magic every time I use it.

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What you need to know about Accessibility in iOS 9

As there are fewer "big" features in iOS 9, so too are there few new accessibility features.That doesn't mean that there are zero new things. On the contrary, what is in iOS 9 is good stuff. Apple continues to push forward in its support for the accessibility community. Here's a rundown of what's new for Accessibility in iOS 9.

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My favorite Apple Watch accessibility features

There are Accessibility features aplenty in Watch OS, but four in particular have become my favorites.

As part of my ongoing efforts to better use and understand Apple Watch, I've recently taken to looking at a few of Watch OS's Accessibility features in more detail. While my vision is good enough that I don't have to use every option, there are a handful that I often like to use because they're well done and are handy.

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Apple Watch and accessibility: First impressions

Thanks to my awesome girlfriend, I was fortunate to take delivery of an Apple Watch on April 24.

Like others, I've spent the last few weeks trying to understand it and figure out how it fits into my life. So far, Apple Watch has left me very pleased overall.

The fact that I'm so pleased with Apple Watch is a bit surprising. I admit that I was skeptical of the Watch when it was first announced, at least in usability terms. From an accessibility standpoint, I wondered how I could cope with such a small display and the digital crown. Even the seemingly mundane task of putting on and taking off the Watch was concerning. In short, I had a lot of questions.

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Apple Watch and accessibility: First look

Apple's message that Apple Watch is "the most personal and intimate device we've ever created" resonates with me in two ways.

First, regarding the Apple Watch as an object, as a timepiece and fashion accessory: It's been years since I regularly wore a watch, but Apple Watch is pushing to change that. From everything I've seen and heard about the watch, I would be thrilled to wear it every day. As with Apple's other products, the watch seemingly strikes a good balance of form and function. Secondly, the Watch as a device — how it works and how one interacts with it — is bound to have far-reaching effects on users with disabilities. As a person with visual and motor delays, I've wondered myself how accessible the Watch will be, especially in context of the size of watch displays.

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Safari Reader view and instant accessibility

Like many people, I get most of my news nowadays via Twitter. Whenever I find a story that interests me, I usually read it right away using the in-app browser.

My Twitter client of choice is Tweetbot. I do this at the expense of a read-it-later service like Instapaper, because I find more often than not that I want the information right now and I'll take the time to get it. Unfortunately, my desire for instant gratification has relegated my use of Instapaper virtually non-existent in practice, despite the fact that I continue to hold the service (and others like it) in theoretical high esteem.

Although I will read a story within Tweetbot's in-app browser, the reading experience isn't ideal, especially on iPhone. In those cases, I will use the Action button to send a page to Safari to read there. Unfortunately, there are times when the trusty pinch-to-zoom gesture won't work with a website, so I switch to Reader View. I've found Reader View to be great: it's not perfect, but it's a handy tool and, most importantly to me, visually accessible.

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The accessible power of pinch-to-zoom

The onset of the iPhone in 2007 introduced the world to Multi-Touch, which Steve Jobs said "worked like magic".

It forever changed the way people interacted with smartphones; not only was Multi-Touch an impressive technical achievement, but it was fun and delightful to use. More importantly, Multi-Touch changed people's expectations for their devices. We've gone from seeing hardware buttons everywhere to seeing simple slabs of glass. This is especially true for young children, who expect everything electronic to be tappable; touch is all they know, as they have no prior context of olden ways.

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Accessibility is for everyone

The point of my work as a freelancer writing about accessibility is to advocate for (and raise awareness of) iOS users with special needs. This is meaningful work to me, as I'm a disabled user myself, and I've worked with children with special needs who have leveraged iOS to help them learn. Yet, for as often as I champion Apple's work in making iOS usable by the disabled, so too have I tried to champion the idea of Accessibility's utility for those with no disabilities at all.

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Apple Watch, WatchKit, and Accessibility

Ever since rumors started swirling that Apple was working on a wearable device, I've often thought about what such a device would mean for people with disabilities. My curiosity is so high, in fact, that I've even written about the possibilities. Make no mistake, for users with disabilities such as myself, a wearable like the Apple Watch brings with it usage and design paradigms that, I think, are of even greater impact than what the iPhone in one's pocket has to offer.

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