Earlier this week, Apple marked International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2022, which falls annually on December 3, with a video titled "The Greatest" that showed how some of its users were using its accessibility features, from detection door to audible alerts. .

While Spinifex Gum's "I Am the Greatest" (with Marliya Choir) plays in the background, you'll see some stages that use accessibility features in iOS and macOS, such as magnifying glass, door detection, and text descriptions. Alternate pointer controls on the Mac, such as head tracking and facial expressions.

True, it is an advertisement after all - a bunch of outstanding features that you can use on Apple devices. However, there's no denying that there's something special here, and it's affecting how far software has come in making these devices just as good for almost anyone to use as anyone else. .

Still, with rumors of an Apple VR headset coming in 2023, I wonder how Apple's accessibility features could go further when it comes to augmented reality and virtual reality.

The era of calling accessibility an "easter egg" is over

Watching this two-minute video (there's also a version with audio description - opens in a new tab), you're struck by how these seven non-actors live their lives using an iPhone, a Mac, and an Apple Watch to help them with her daily tasks. For example, you see a deaf mother who is notified on her Apple Watch that her newborn baby is crying, so she is going to take care of him. You can activate it by going to Settings > Accessibility > Sound recognitionthen enable sound recognition to select certain alerts for certain sounds.

Meanwhile, Julliard-trained jazz pianist Matthew Whitaker (opens in new tab) brought to my attention how he used detection in a scene where he's using an iPhone to help him read what's written. at the door. I'm told that Door Detection works with any iPhone that has a LIDAR scanner, so an iPhone 12 Pro and above, and can work at distances up to 20 feet.

Watching the detection mode in the Magnifier app read the word "Scenario" on the door, I realized this could be the start of something bigger. Imagine a headset that can automatically read menu items wherever you point your eyes or other distance-sensing notifications.

Also, if you're walking a dog, for example, the helmet can allow you to see more clearly on a foggy morning to pick up a stick the dog has dropped next to you, or it can tell you where the stick is. and how close it is.

(Image credit: Apple)

It all comes down to accessibility and how it can enrich someone's lifestyle. For too long there has been content describing accessibility features as "easter eggs" or "hidden features," and it's time for that to change. It's videos like "The Greatest" that show how sensing mode and voice control not only help everyday users, but also thrive.

The rumored headphones could take those features to the next level, and if they are announced in 2023, the first question for me won't be how much it will cost, but what accessibility features will be included from day one.

The video is some of Apple's best in recent years; Now let's see what else the category can do to better enrich the lives of others.

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