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16 May, 2023
1 min time to read

Apple has unveiled a set of new accessibility features aimed at helping users with cognitive, vision, hearing, and mobility disabilities.

Among the features are a new Personal Voice feature that allows users to create a synthesized voice that sounds like them, enabling them to speak to friends and family members if they lose the ability to speak.

To create a Personal Voice, users need to read a set of text prompts aloud for a total of 15 minutes on their iPhone or iPad. The feature uses on-device machine learning to keep users’ information private and secure.

Other features include streamlined versions of Apple's core apps that distill them to their essential features to lighten cognitive load, high contrast buttons, large text labels, and additional accessibility tools, as well as a detection mode in Magnifier to help users who are blind or have low vision to interact with physical objects with numerous text labels.

The company is also adding an easier way to adjust the size of the text in Finder, Messages, Mail, Calendar, and Notes on Mac.

The features will be available later this year, potentially as part of iOS 17.

Apple has emphasized that accessibility is a top priority for the company and that the new features were designed with feedback from members of disability communities.