The AppleVis Community Names Backpack Studio and Swordy Quest Its Golden Apples of 2021

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

We are pleased to announce that the winners of the tenth annual AppleVis Golden Apple Awards are Backpack Studio and Swordy Quest.

Since their launch in 2012, the AppleVis Golden Apple Awards have afforded blind and low vision users of Apple products an opportunity to recognize and acknowledge the hard work and dedication which developers have put into making and maintaining great and accessible applications over the given year. The respective teams behind Backpack Studio and Swordy Quest are demonstrably worthy recipients of this honour in 2021 for their commitment to accessible app development.

Backpack Studio enables you to create professional sounding podcasts and radio from anywhere using only an iPhone or iPad. The app records, mixes, and masters your podcast or radio show in real time, thus reducing post-production time and work. Its developer cites full VoiceOver support for vision impaired audio producers as one of Backpack Studio's main features.

Swordy Quest is an addictive RPG adventure game based in the fantasy realm of Shiremore. Players must craft, gather, hunt, and fight their way through the open world environment as they strive to achieve their goal of saving humanity. Its developer has actively engaged with our community - answering questions about the game, wanting to know people's favourite aspect of the game, asking if people like or loathed a game update, and seeking feedback on further enhancements for blind and low vision players.

Below is more information on each of the winners from their App Store pages:

Best App: Backpack Studio

Backpack is the successor to bossjock studio, from the original developer, and based upon years of refinement and user feedback. A must-have app for podcasters and radio DJs - both beginner and pro.

With backpack studio, Your show is automatically mixed and mastered while it’s being recorded. Focus your time and energy on being creative, instead of doing post-production work and editing on a PC.


  • Record your voice while triggering sounds live - intros, background music, and sound effects. Sounds automatically adjust volume in real time. No need for multitrack or post production software. Recording your show becomes a creative live performance!
  • A powerful soundboard with unlimited pages of soundpads. Scroll pads to the left and a new empty page appears - ready to go! Reposition sounds, or pin sounds to a specific pad to appear on each page. Configure the size, color, and behavior of each pad as needed. Swipe the pads vertically to live mix the volume.
  • Import sounds into the soundboard from anywhere - iCloud, dropbox, google drive, your music library, email, even import directly from other apps.
  • An optional subscription package, "Backpack Live" with extra cloud services for recording remote guests, live streaming, soundboard storage, and more!
  • Turn your podcast into a creative video using animations, text, and photos. Great for promoting your show on social media!
  • Find the perfect eq filter for your voice. Noise gate to lower background noise. Studio quality compression, limiting, and eq algorithms are automatically applied to your mix live for a loud, studio-quality mastered sound.
  • Create custom Siri Voice, external keyboard, and midi shortcuts to record and trigger soundpads.
  • Encodes to all popular formats, mp3, wav, m4a, aiff, and video.
  • Publish recordings directly to iCloud, dropbox, Facebook, youtube, an FTP, Libsyn, or open in any app on your phone that accepts audio or video.
  • Full VoiceOver compatibility for visually impaired producers.
  • Battery and cpu optimization. Records in compressed audio to save 90% of the drive space space of other mixing apps. (optional)
  • Inter-app audio and audiobus support allow you to stream to other apps.
  • Unrivaled hardware support. Backpack works with all usb / external mics like the Apogee Mic, IK Multimedia iRig Mic Cast and Blue Mikey. 4 channel usb mixer support for Focusrite mixers. Mix the left and right channels together or disable the iOS built in gain control (AGC) via the settings panel. We're always adding support for the latest iOS hardware.

Read the AppleVis iOS App Directory entry for Backpack Studio

Best Game: Swordy Quest: An RPG Adventure

Imagine waking up with no name, food or supplies. Where are you? Lake to the East, Mountains to the South. It doesn't matter now. YOU NEED TO SURVIVE. Set in a Fantasy and Living World, your goal is clear: Save humanity. Find water and food while fending off the habitants of the world. Gather, craft, hunt & cast magic for rewards and progression. Can you unlock the secrets of Swordy Quest?


  • Open World Environment - allowing you to explore grasslands, lakes, mountains & more
  • Enemies around every corner!
  • Weapon crafting - where finding the right materials is key to fending off enemies
  • Survival aspects - requiring careful resource management
  • Hidden items - finding them can mean the difference between life & death
  • Eye-catching graphics - transport you to another world
  • Intuitive navigation system
  • Advanced Player customization
  • Become a Wizard by unlocking
  • & much, much more...

Read the AppleVis iOS App Directory entry for Swordy Quest: An RPG Adventure


The 2021 AppleVis Golden Apple Awards consisted of awards for Best App and Best Game. Voting was held between December 6 and December 12, 2021. Voting was open to all blind and low vision members of the AppleVis community who were not employed by any of the developers whose apps were shortlisted.

To be nominated for this year's Golden Apple Awards, apps must:

  • Be fully accessible to blind and low vision users;
  • Have been launched or significantly updated during 2021;
  • Be from a developer with a strong, demonstrated commitment to full accessibility for all blind and low vision users; and
  • Be best-in-class in terms of design, functionality, and operation.

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all the developers who were shortlisted for an award. Without exception, all of the shortlisted apps and games were worthy nominees - as demonstrated by the significant number of votes each received. All of the developers showed a strong commitment to improving the lives of blind and low vision users in 2021, and our appreciation for their efforts cannot be overstated.

The complete list of all apps shortlisted for the 2021 AppleVis Golden Apple Awards is available here The list of previous winners of an AppleVis Golden Apple is available here.



Submitted by Matthew Whitaker on Monday, December 13, 2021

Congratulations to all the winners!!! ☺️❤️