“An Italian built the first typewriter to help a blind countess write legibly. Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone because his wife and mother were deaf. The remote control was invented for people with limited mobility. Today’s office scanners evolved from technologies created to make talking books for the blind.
From the typewriter to the remote control, special access tools developed for disabled individuals eventually become conveniences for a much wider group – if not everyone.”
– WIRED Magazine, Raising the Accessibility Bar.
The examples at the top of this page are just a few of many. It has been proved countless times now that designing for users with ‘extreme’ needs can solve huge problems for the mainstream. When product designers face constraints, they give themselves freedom to use resources in less conventional ways – because they have to. This drives creativity and innovation like nothing else.
Microsoft have defined Inclusive Design as being “for those who want to make great products for the greatest number of people”. They see human diversity as a resource for better designs.
Who’s leading the way?
Apple’s mission is to ‘enrich people’s lives’. A broad and inclusive promise that has guided the company to create some of the most innovative and disruptive products of our time. The company sees accessibility as a basic human right – and therefore puts inclusivity as a priority within any design process.
The accessibility software on all of Apple’s platforms empower those with disabilities to experience Apple products in the same way as all users. They have become the first choice for disabled customers all over the world.