Based on discussions I have seen in another thread, there appears to be a misconception floating around that the dynamic island feature in the new iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max is not accessible with VoiceOver. This is not correct, and I am making this post to clear things up. Please note I did already respond in the other thread, but as my comment is quite a ways down, I figured it would be beneficial to have this here.
Note that I am running iOS 16.0.1, the latest public release of the software for the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max.
First let me talk about my own experience with the dynamic island, which I started testing and playing with last night. I got my iPhone 14 Pro Max yesterday, and the dynamic island is definitely fully accessible with VoiceOver, at least for me.
The dynamic island appears at the very top of the screen, right in the middle. It shows up when there is background activity. So far, I have tested it with both playing music from the music app and when a timer is running in the background.
For example, if I start playing a song from my Apple Music Library, about 5 seconds after the song starts, I can touch the dynamic island, and it tells me the artist/title of the song that is playing. I then have VoiceOver actions to either activate (which opens the music app) or to expand, which is the sighted equivalent of touching and holding. The latter action makes the island larger and provides more information. In the case of a song playing, I now see a little more info about the song and have buttons to skip and play/pause and do AirPlay. When the island is in an expanded state, VoiceOver actions give me the ability to activate (like before) or to collapse, which makes the island shrink back to its original size.
The neat thing is when the activity disappears, such as if I do a magic tap to stop a song, the dynamic island disappears. If I magic tap again to start the song, a few seconds after the song starts playing, the island re-appears.
One person who said the dynamic island was not working for him did confirm he is running iOS 16.1 beta, so it is possible that there is an issue around the dynamic island's accessibility in the latest beta. With iOS 16.0.1, however, it works perfectly.
Overall, I think it's really neat and am thrilled Apple made it fully accessible with VoiceOver out of the box. When third-party apps start supporting it like Uber, this has the potential to be super amazingly cool in my opinion.
Perhaps there is some…
Perhaps there is some missconception on what is and what is not dynamic island. According to what the author of this topic and others have stated, I really don't understand what's new there. In other words, you don't need anything special to show information on the upper side of a screen. Just a screen. So, in my opinion, when you interact with a screen element, you are not using anything but... a screen. For a non visually impaired individual, it is supposed to show asymbol, or a light, or whatever, to show visual information. But, for a voiceover user, honestly, what is that island? A small area on the screen? You could add another little rectangle at the bottom of the screen and name it lower island, but it's nothing but screen.
So, in my opinion, it should be called usable. Accessible, well, not exactly, since we are not using it the way it is intended to be used.
Taking a taxi is not the same as driving a car, even if both activities use a car and give same results :)
basically, when a blind user buys a pro is paying for anything but a little extra rectangle on the screen.could
RE: Perhaps there is some…
I don't follow. Everything to do with interacting with the phone involves the screen. The dynamic island is just a new way to display information about background activities. Here's Apple's official description of the dynamic island, so you understand it better:
Nice explanation about the dynamic island.
I am glad to know that it is accessible. Thank you.
make a podcast.
Please make a podcast about it.
good to hear
that's a good news.
I am going to get the IPhone 14 pro later
To be honest, I don't get…
To be honest, I don't get the added value of this dynamic island. Marketing-wise, it's something new and exciting, but technically, it seems to display the same things that the live activities do in the notification center or the lock screen. Let's say I've set a timer to 10 minutes. I simply can swipe down from the top of the screen and just two swipes to the right, there is the live activity of the timer where I can pause it or close it (which means I'd cancel the timer). Whether I now swipe down or locate the island and expand the info of the content, it makes no difference for me. For sighted people, it'll make a difference, for example design-wise, yes. But for me as a fully-blind VoiceOver user, I don't care whether I swipe down from the top or locate the island and expand the content of it.
I guess it's like a…
I guess it's like a complication on the Apple Watch. What it actually is, is an aspect of the display that can't be used in normal circumstances that apple have cleverly pivoted to a more feature rich status bar.
I think, real world, it might actually be quite useful as though we can get all this information elsewhere, it will be always there, quick start and stop of music, books. Can text a friend and immediately check how long away the uber is without having to hop into the app. No doubt developers will find useful ways of using it. I think the point is, however, is learned consistency, it's the place to check on time sensitive actions.
This is all, of course, academic. I can't afford either the 14 pro, though I'm interested to see where it goes in the future and if it trickles down into the standard 15 next year or is used as one of the rumoured segmenting features between standard and pro.
Maybe it’s me. But I’m not finding it accessible at all.
Perhaps it’s just me. But I’m not finding any of it accessible at all. I’m running iOS 16.1 beta one and it’s mostly empty space with no feedback of any kind. I consider myself to be an expert user and I just haven’t figured it out yet. Perhaps I’m missing something.
RE: Maybe it’s me. But I’m not finding it accessible at all.
I think you may have missed the following paragraph from my original post:
“One person who said the dynamic island was not working for him did confirm he is running iOS 16.1 beta, so it is possible that there is an issue around the dynamic island's accessibility in the latest beta. With iOS 16.0.1, however, it works perfectly.”
RE: I guess it's like a…
Oliver, that is an absolutely perfect way to look at it. The analogy to a watch complication is spot on. The way in which the information is presented and accessible via the dynamic island likely has a greater impact to a sighted person's productivity level than to a blind person's, but I still see it as being very useful for us as well. Having the time when say your Uber ride or restaurant order is arriving always on the screen, no matter what app you're in, would be very nice. Rather than having to constantly switch back to that app to check status/progress, you can just tap the dynamic island, and ban, there you go.
The ultimate usefulness of it will of course depend on how various developers make use of it, so we'll have to wait and see. But I can certainly see the potential in it.
the interesting thing here…
the interesting thing here is it's a clever work around to replace the notch. What will happen next with the back facing camera? There are always ideas of under screen cameras etc, so whether the dynamic island is here to stay for the next few years waits to be seen. Considering apples usual design cycle, I'd imagine the 15 being a new shape, so the era of the iPhone 12 body, will come to an end. This might also be needed for USB-c to come in or if apple sacks off all ports and relies on MagSafe and qi charging.
I’m glad to hear this.
Great to hear in fact it is accessible.
As I said in one of those posts regarding it wasn’t accessible, I’m going to buy the 14 pro, but when I hert it wasn’t accessible, I was disappointed and realised iI would have to stay with my iphone 12 for another year.
Just weird to see that some guys couldn’t get the best of it yet for any reason.
Beta appears to be the issue
From our testing and what we've heard, it appears that the iOS 16.1 beta might indeed be the reason for conflicting reports on the accessibility of the Dynamic Island.
We believe that if you are running the beta, you will likely find accessibility issues. However, on 16.0.1 the Dynamic Island should be fully accessible.
It is integrated into the VoiceOver status bar, located at the top of your iPhone screen (and available via keyboard command or braille shortcut if you use an external keyboard or braille display with your iPhone). You can also drag your finger over Dynamic Island to hear VoiceOver describe an activity or alert. Typically, a long press will expand the activity/alert, whilst a double-tap will open the associated app.
Note that Dynamic Island is only available when there is an alert or ongoing activity to display — for example music that’s playing, a timer, an AirDrop connection, and directions from Maps. When Dynamic Island does not have an activity or alert to display, VoiceOver status bar will not include Dynamic Island.
If your experience on either 16.0.1 or the current 16.1 beta release does not match the above, please let us know by adding a comment below.
If you are on the beta and encountering problems with the Dynamic Island, please be sure to file a report through the Feedback Assistant so that we can hopefully get this resolved before the public release.