Apple’s New Accessibility Features Include Eye Tracking to Navigate Your Device Using Only Your Eyes

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Apple New Accessibility Features for iOS and CarPlay

Apple just unveiled a suite of new accessibility features for its iOS and CarPlay aimed at making its technology more inclusive. Among these innovations is a groundbreaking feature called “Vehicle Motion Cues,” designed to assist users who suffer from motion sickness. 

This and other updates highlight Apple’s commitment to enhancing the usability of its products for people with disabilities. 

Expanding Accessibility: Eye Tracking and Music Haptics

Apple is also rolling out other significant accessibility updates across its devices. Eye Tracking will be available on iPhones and iPads, allowing users with physical disabilities to navigate their devices using only their eyes. 

This feature uses the front-facing camera and on-device machine learning to provide secure and accurate control without additional hardware. 

Another notable addition is Music Haptics, which will enable deaf or hard-of-hearing users to experience music through the Taptic Engine in iPhones. By translating audio into tactile feedback, users can feel the rhythm and beat of their favorite songs. 

A Solution for Motion Sickness

Motion sickness, which affects many passengers, can cause symptoms such as nausea, headaches, and dizziness when reading or using devices in a moving vehicle. 

The new Vehicle Motion Cues feature tackles this problem by leveraging the iPhone’s sensors, including GPS and accelerometers, to track the vehicle’s movements. 

Animated dots on the screen correspond with the car’s motion, moving in sync with the car’s accelerations, turns, and stops. 

This visual feedback helps align the user’s sensory inputs, potentially reducing the disorientating effects of motion sickness. 

In addition to Vehicle Motion Cues, CarPlay will now include Sound Recognition to aid deaf and hard-of-hearing users. This feature can detect important sounds like car horns and sirens, thereby, alerting users through visual cues or vibrations. 

This enhancement aims to ensure that all users, regardless of hearing ability can stay aware of their surroundings while driving. 

Apple’s new accessibility features extend to various areas. These would include color filters for CarPlay that can help colorblind users. They simply need to adjust screen colors for better visibility. 

Another improvement is the readability of the CarPlay interface. It now comes with bold text and large text that can be of great help to users with visual impairments. 

Vocal Shortcuts feature is also rolling out. It enables users to assign custom utterances to Siri for performing tasks. 

Then, there’s Listen to Atypical Speech. It enhances speech recognition for users with conditions affecting their speech, using on-device machine learning to adapt to unique speech patterns. 

These new features can surely make an impact on the lives of various users. They provide new ways to communicate. 

Apple continues to push the boundaries of technology with its commitment to accessibility. These new features are set to debut with iOS 18 and will be showcased at the upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on June 10, 2024. 

As Apple integrates these advancements, it remains at the forefront of ensuring that its technology is accessible to all, reaffirming its dedication to inclusive design and innovation.

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Author: Jane Danes

Jane has a lifelong passion for writing. As a blogger, she loves writing breaking technology news and top headlines about gadgets, content marketing and online entrepreneurship and all things about social media. She also has a slight addiction to pizza and coffee.

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