Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Friday, September 24, 2010

Universally Accessible Products, A Benefit

by Donna J. Jodhan

Make your products universally accessible and I can guarantee you that this is the way to go! What am I singing about this day? Very simple indeed!

So many manufacturers and developers are petrified when they hear the term universally accessible. They practically shake in their boots and they believe that making their products universally accessible would mean that they would lose consumers! Not so! Definitely not so and here's why! You can attract many more consumers because your products would be more attractive to a much wider spectrum of consumers.

Allow me to give you two brief and simple examples.

  1. Your cooking appliance: If the knobs and buttons are brightly colored, easy to read, and can easily be handled, guess who can benefit? Not just those who are blind or with poor vision, but seniors, those who are afflicted with dexterity challenges, and persons who identify themselves as just plain old clumsy. Make the displays on these products easy to read and clear to see and guess what? You'll definitely attract universal consumers.

  2. Your cell phone: Yes, so often the displays are o so difficult to see, buttons are so small, and menus are very difficult to read. What this means is that you are barring many consumers from wanting to buy your product. Those who are blind, have sight problems, those with dexterity problems, those who are technically shy meaning that they did not grow up in the age of technology, and those whose first language is not English.

You got it! Too often many manufacturers fail to take these types of consumers into consideration and accordingly, they end up missing out on practically millions of consumers. Seniors and retirees are going to become more and more of your bread and butter consumer in the near future, like now. Aging baby boomers will do so, like tomorrow. Those whose first language is not English will be yours forever.

I'm Donna J. Jodhan your friendly accessibility advocate wishing you a terrific day and encouraging you to go out there and tell the world that yes indeed! Blind persons can certainly enjoy things by using their sense of touch. If you'd like to learn more about me, then you can visit some of my blog spots at:
Donna Jodhan! Advocating accessibility for all: http://www.donnajodhan.blogspot.com
Weekly Saturday postings on issues of accessibility: http://www.sterlingcreations.ca/blog/blog.html
blogs on various issues and answers to consumers concerns: http://www.sterlingcreations.com/businessdesk.htm

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