According to a WEF report, more than 1 billion people worldwide experience some form of disability stopping them from completing their education or, getting them employed. Microsoft strongly believes that technology has the potential to empower people to achieve more, help strengthen education opportunities, and make the workplace more inviting and inclusive for people with disabilities. Accessible technologies, enabled by AI, help people with disabilities unlock their full potential at school, work, and home.
In celebration of Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Microsoft is underscoring its commitment to make technology more accessible for everyone. In her most recent Microsoft on the Issues blog post, Chief Accessibility Officer Jenny Lay-Flurrie explains how “making accessibility part of how we do business around the world is essential. Thinking about it as a cultural shift, and how we manage a business is core to achieving this goal.”
At Microsoft, accessibility and inclusion are essential to deliver the mission of empowering every person and organization on the planet to achieve more. We put accessibility at the heart of design to make products and services that adapts to each user’s unique situation, device capabilities and human abilities to learn, use, build and master. Microsoft 365 is an example that helps make people accessible with disabilities to make them more productive. Similarly, using AI enabled technologies, we are creating robust solutions such as real-time speech-to-text transcription, visual recognition services and predictive text functionality.
Leveraging technology, at Microsoft, we are building accessible and inclusive solutions to empower people with disabilities through the following:
- Empowering through Windows 10:
- Eye control enables you to type with an on-screen keyboard, communicate with people, and control the mouse with just your eyes.
- Magnifier makes part or all of your screen bigger so you can see words and images better.
- Narrator reads text on your screen aloud and describes events, such as notifications or calendar appointments, so you can use your computer without a display.
- Learning Tools improves reading and writing for learners regardless of their age and ability. The tool is offered in Word, OneNote, Edge and Outlook.
- Xbox Adaptive Controller was designed to empower gamers with limited mobility. Every aspect of the controller, including the packaging, was designed in close partnership with the accessibility community.
- Seeing AI – an app that narrates the world for people who are blind or have low vision. What began as a hackathon project has evolved into an app that has helped people with more than 10 million tasks.
- Soundscape reimagines how technology can enhance independence and mobility to empower people who are blind or have low vision
Click here for more information