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One in five Australians have a disability and over 50 per cent of the more than four million Australians over the age of 65 have a disability.
This means using technology will come with its challenges but today Apple announced even more features that will make their products among the most accessible in the world.

Already renowned by those with blindness or low vision, Apple’s iPhone has accessibility options built in from the very first time you turn it on.

Door Detection will allow someone with low vision to use their phone to identify doors on the street or in shops with the phone using voice to read out what is written on the door.
Door Detection will allow someone with low vision to use their phone to identify doors on the street or in shops with the phone using voice to read out what is written on the door. (9News)

Later this year, some new features will be added including Door Detection, Live Captioning and Apple Watch support for those unable to use the devices touch features.

Door Detection will allow someone with low vision to use their phone to identify doors on the street or in shops with the phone using voice to read out what is written on the door, as well as critical information about if the door is push, pull and if it’s opened or closed.

It may seem simple to those of us with great vision, but it could be a game-changer for many.

A new Mirroring function will allow the Apple Watch screen to be seen within an iPhone.
A new Mirroring function will allow the Apple Watch screen to be seen within an iPhone. (9News)
Apple adding Door Detection and Live Captions for improved accessibility
Apple is adding Door Detection and Live Captions for improved accessibility. (9News)

Likewise, the Live Captioning feature will allow the deaf or those suffering hearing loss to get real-time transcriptions of any audio coming from the phone.

This may be a movie they’re watching, or a phone call they are on; if the words are coming out the speaker, the phone can transcribe it.

The user can also switch the transcription to input, so the microphone can be used to transcribe the other side of a conversation.

Live Captioning which will allow the deaf or those suffering hearing loss to get real-time transcriptions of any audio coming from the phone.
Live Captioning will allow the deaf or those suffering hearing loss to get real-time transcriptions of any audio coming from the phone. (9News)

For those unable to use the touch features of an Apple Watch, a new Mirroring function will allow the Apple Watch screen to be seen within an iPhone, and thus controlled via voice commands like all other aspects of the phone.

This puts heart rate monitoring, ECG and blood oxygen level readings into the realms of possibilities to those who could benefit from them, but are unable to use them.

these new features are due to launch later this year
The new features are due to launch later this year. (9News)

These new features are due to launch later this year and join a whole host of accessibility functions already available on iPhone, iPad and Mac devices.

It’s not yet known if the new features will come in an update to iOS 15 or in the newer iOS 16, which we expect in late September.

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The new, wacky and innovative technology on display for 2022

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