Web Experience Improvements on Google Chrome
All to often we take our ability to perform a quick Google search or read a blog post for granted, but for those with a visual impairment, the experience can be far more difficult.
As with anything, Google are on the case. Chrome appears to be on another level when it comes to improving the user experience for those with a visual impairment. From a bell ring to signal a page has loaded to colour enhancers to assist those who suffer with colour blindness, Google certainly are committed to making the web more accessible for all.
In the following paragraphs we’ll take a closer look at the top accessibility extensions for Chrome that will make a big difference to your web experience.
Have you ever stumbled across a site that uses what appears to be the smallest font size known to man? We know we have! In such situations you’ll probably try to read the text for a few seconds but after no joy you’ll go elsewhere.
Chromevis solves the problem. It’s a simple magnifier that will magnify any highlighted text. All you need to do is highlight the area of text that you would like to read and a separate ‘lens’ area will appear at the top of your browser.
Chromevis isn’t just useful for those who struggle to read smaller text, its also ideal for anyone who suffers from conditions like dyslexia.
For some, identifying whether or not a webpage is fully loaded can be quite difficult.
ChromeVox is Google’s screen reader offering and if you struggle to identify if a page is completely loaded and ready for you to navigate, you’ll find it extremely useful.
ChromeVox couldn’t be easier to use. Once installed, the browser will make a chiming sound, so you’ll know when you can start navigating and interacting with the site. It also offers sophisticated features for browsing webpages and providing summaries of any page’s content without laboriously reading out every single word.
ChromeVox is an ideal way to browse the web without having to rely solely on your vision. It is a superb choice for users with more severe visual impairments.
Certain computers also have voice commands that work with browsers, so if you want to take your experience with ChromeVox to a new level, take a closer look at your computer system to see what form of voice commands it has to offer. You might just be able to navigate the web without ever placing your hands on the keyboard.
Colour blindness is far more common than you may think; about 4.5% of the world’s population suffers from it. For such users, certain common colour combinations make it extremely difficult for them to identify text and images.
If a colour blind user views a site that largely uses such colour combinations as part of their design, the chances are that they will struggle to read text and understand any images or calls to action that are used. This means a poor user experience for the person and a lost customer for the website. Some sites, such as Facebook, are designed with colour blind users in mind but unfortunately this is the exception rather than the rule.
Enter Color Enhancer. It takes a few seconds to install this addon and once you have it on your system it will walk you through a colour calibration process and add customised colour filters to your browser. This means that your viewing experience will be adapted to your own specific visual needs, so images and text that were difficult to make out in the past will be much more welcoming in the future.
Do you think that these addons will make the web far more accessible for those with visual impairments? Get involved in the conversation and let us know in the comment box.