Apple’s iOS device has accessibility features as part of its software, but usually such support has been limited to the operating system or native apps. This is because Apple has not required third-party developers to ensure that their apps have accessibility features before they are approved to be sold on the iTunes App Store.
While there are some developers who care about such features, there are those who might not have considered it. However it seems that the National Federation of the Blind has plans to start a campaign in which they will try to get Apple to make it a requirement for apps to contain accessibility features before it is put up for sale.
For example some apps such as LinkedIn do not have accessibility features. According to a certain Jonathan Lyens who is legally blind (via Reuters), “The app is insane. Buttons aren’t labeled. It’s difficult to navigate. When it comes to social media apps, new problems arise with every release. I get nervous every time I hit the update button.” To LinkedIn’s credit, they have since hired an accessibility chief to help improve the app.
Back in 2008, the NFB had actually filed a lawsuit against Apple, who responded by settling for $250,000 and agreed to add captions and other improvements to iTunes to make it more accessible. The NFB hopes that they won’t have to resort to another lawsuit before Apple takes action, but claims that they will as a last resort. What do you guys think? Should Apple make it a requirement for developers to introduce accessibility features, or should it be up to the developers themselves?