Baltimore, Maryland (May 1, 2013): The National Federation of the Blind (NFB), the nation’s leading advocate for access to technology and education for the blind, commented today on Amazon’s incorporation of new accessibility features into its application for the iPhone and other devices using Apple’s iOS operating system.
Dr. Marc Maurer, president of the National Federation of the Blind, said: “We are pleased that Amazon has taken advantage of the inherent accessibility of Apple products and Apple’s clear guidelines for creating accessible applications by finally releasing a version of its Kindle app that allows blind readers to access Kindle content on Apple devices. Continued improvement of this app is needed, however, in order to make it appropriate for use in educational settings, and Amazon must also make its Kindle devices fully accessible. Amazon should also make its future software, devices, and content available to the blind when these products are released to the general public rather than implementing accessibility at an unspecified later time. Today’s app release is a significant step on the journey to full access to Kindle content by the blind, but that journey is not over, and the National Federation of the Blind will not rest until its completion.”
The National Federation of the Blind has advocated for full access to Kindle devices and Kindle e-books since Amazon introduced the Kindle. Most recently, NFB members staged an informational protest in front of Amazon’s Seattle headquarters
to explain why Kindle e-books should not be used in schools because they do not provide equal access to all of the same information and features by both blind and sighted students. For more information on this issue, please visit www.nfb.org/kindle-books