Release Date: 
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Chris Danielsen
Director of Public Relations
National Federation of the Blind
(410) 659-9314, extension 2330
(410) 262-1281 (Cell)

National Federation of the Blind Commends Apple for Including VoiceOver on iPad

Baltimore, Maryland (January 28, 2010): The National Federation of the Blind, the nation’s leading consumer organization of blind persons, today commended Apple Inc. for including its VoiceOver application on its latest device, the iPad, which was unveiled yesterday.  VoiceOver is a screen access application that uses text-to-speech technology in conjunction with the device’s touch-screen interface so that blind people can independently operate the device.  VoiceOver is also integrated into Apple’s Mac operating system and is included on the iPhone 3GS and recent models of the iPod Touch.

Dr. Marc Maurer, President of the National Federation of the Blind, said: “The National Federation of the Blind commends Apple for including the VoiceOver screen access application on its highly-anticipated new device, the iPad.  Blind consumers, like our sighted friends and colleagues, will be able to share in the experience of using this new device from the moment we take it out of the box.  By integrating accessibility into its products, Apple is setting an example that we believe the rest of the electronics industry should follow.  Furthermore, the fact that Apple has successfully integrated a screen access solution with its touch-screen technology demonstrates that touch screens need not be a barrier to the use of electronic devices by the blind.”

On September 22, 2009, the National Federation of the Blind presented Apple with a special award to honor the company for making the iPhone accessible.