Accessibility Features in Windows 8 Detailed


Building Windows 8 had another epic post and this time it talks about enabling accessibility on up coming Windows 8.

The biggest change or improvement in this area in the coming Consumer Preview is the new redesigned Narrator that can quickly read out what you have selected on the screen. Not only that, right out of the box with a new Windows 8 tablet, you will be able to easily press the Windows Logo key and the Volume Up button to launch Narrator so whether you are blind or are having low vision, or are fully sighted, you can start experiencing a Windows 8 tablet from the moment you get your hands on it.


With the updates in IE 10 that leverage text patterns built into the UI automation platform, the new Narrator provides you with the ability to continuously read a page using the Windows Logo key + Alt + \, or responds quickly to commands such as Ctrl, which stops it from speaking instantly. You can even interactive with Narrator to respond a hyperlink.

The other noticeable improved feature is its Magnify glass.On Windows 7, it’s quite easy to use by simply pressing Windows Logo key with a plus sign for zoom in and a minus sign for zoom out. Now on Windows 8, since it will be used mostly on the touchable devices, there will be more features needed for touch.

A boarder appears around the edges of the screen when you press Window Logo key and volume up button on a tablet to enable the magnifier. Simply drag your finger along the boarder to move the Magnifier in 4 directions. When the boarder disappears, you are at the edge of the screen. The border also supports multi-touch as well.


The new Magnifier also has a preview feature that shows you exactly where you are in the context of the entire screen. Use two of your fingers to tap the opposite boarders at the same time to enable it.

It’s worth noting that using the magnifier won’t interference with the way how you interactive with your device with the touch. All apps should support the magnifier natively without any compromise.


As usual, you can watch these new features in a video demo below.

[via Building Windows 8]



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