[Desktop] Accessibility for blind and low Vision Users

We've reach mid 2017 and still the Windows and Mac versions of Spotify are not even usable to blind users. Now that Apple Music has arrived I think it is time to push accessibility to the top of the list. I've seen lots of posts from other people being closed due to lack of kudos. Really? Accessibility is a right, not a social thing.

I ask the Spotify dev team to implement accessibility for screen reader users in both Windows and Mac platforms

Comments
Hellswing
Casual Listener

'cause Spotify is used by really big music fans, why not making a blind test application in it? :)

domasofan
Newbie

Hello,

I am a blind Spotify Unlimited customer and have trouble using the spotify software like sighted users do because the client is not very accessible using a screenreader.

As far as i have heard you got contacted by a few blind people stating that they have issues using your software.

Please take that seriously cause many people wish to use their spotify account more sucessfully and would also recommend it more when it would be more accessible on all platforms.

Here are some screenreader suggestions for different platforms which are free:

Windows:
NVDA: http://www.nvda-project.org/

Mac OS X: Voice Over: which is integrated in the OS already

Linux: Using the Gnome Desktop you might have Orca already installed as well.

Android: TalkBack should be also already installed on recent phones. If not its available in the google play store.

iOS: also voice over should be pre-installed on those devices

The blind community is looking forward to get in contact with you.

We are a quite big community what music is concerned.

greetings from austria,
Simon

tuukkao
Newbie

Agreed. While the situation seems to be all right on the mobile front, the Windows client definitely needs to be looked at. Basically, the program is barely useable and it seems to be getting worse as new features are being added. For example buying tracks, which used to be possible, is now totally inaccessible to screen reader users, and Spotify apps were never accessible to begin with.

user-removed
Not applicable

Hello to all. If you make the app accessible I think you will have more premium subscribers. Also more visually impaired people will be able to use your service. I really do hope you take this as a very serious consideration. I can attest to both the mac and windows clients being inaccessible. I'd also be willing to help you out with testing accessibility. Thank you very much.

agata
Newbie

Im a voiceover user on a MacBook Air and I think it is scandalous that your Spotify is not available for blind people! I will cancel my premium account as I simply cant use it on my Mac!

Its sad, frustrating and dissapointing that you don't feel about accessibility issues when designing Spotify.

I hope you can update Spotify so that I can use it in near future.

 

Munkwunk
Newbie

This seems to be falling on deaf ears, but I'm going to throw in my two cents as well.

 

I am a visually impaired Spotify user and the app doesn't work well at all with ZoomText. It has poor contrast and its fonts are tiny. Text on top of images (e.g. album titles on top of album art) is nearly unreadable.

 

Spotify needs to get its act together and start thinking about accessibility.

Phrequency
Newbie

Hello,

 

I too am quite disappointed in the accessibility (or lack there of) in the desktop clients. It's been over a year since I last installed the client to see how accessible it was, and now it seems to be even worse. I can kind of access it on the desktop using play.spotify.com, but that's just a workaround for something that I honestly thought would be addressed at least slightly.

 

I currently have a 30 day trial of premium that I'll probably end up canceling, as I don't want to have to grab my phone just to listen to music. Please consider making either an alternate screen reader mode, or alternate Mac and Windows clients without all the eye candy using standard UI controls.

MeaghanBynum
Newbie

 I enjoy using the spotify app, but I don't think the follow artists feature is accessible. If so, where do I go to use it?

chojiro
Newbie

When using Spotify with VoiceOver on iOS, it works rather well. There are a few issues in with the new menus, though, but you fixed one of them in the recent updates. If you tap to open the sidebar menu, it shows content to VoiceOver that is no longer seemingly on my screen. So, if I'm in Playlists and I tap the sidebar to open the menu, I can go all the way to the top of the screen and flick right to see options from before the menu. So, since I have tapped on Playlists then tapped to open the sidebar menu, VoiceOver shows me the options for the Playlists even though they do not show up. Obviously, that is not supposed to happen given they're no longer there.

 

As for Spotify on OS X, the web player recently debuted in Denmark which is fantastic. It actually works pretty well, so now I don't have to send the audio from iOS to my Mac anymore when wanting to listen through my headphones when I study. The Spotify application, however, does not work at all. VoiceOver does not really recognise any of the UI when launching the application. You're able to navigate between the Username and Password fields on login, but that is mostly it. Hitting enter of course logs you in, and then VoiceOver says you are in a Search field, but that is all you get. I can start music, but not with the aid of VoiceOver.

 

Bottom line is this. UI is unusable with VoiceOver at the moment. I just downloaded the application again just to see if anything had changed, but it has not. Hopefully more than the Search field and some of the login screen, as well as the menus will become accessible. I hope it will eventually reach the same state as on iOS.

 

That having been said, fantastic work on the web player and the iOS accessibility.

Prisy
Newbie

I too use assistive technology to complete all of my daily tasks on my computer. Having an accessible laptop has been an essential tool for professional, educational, and personal use. I use voiceover on the mac and find that most applications are compatible . . I downloaded spotify for mac, but it is totally inaccessible. I agree with previous posts suggesting the inclusion of blind individuals in the use of spotify. Everyone has the right to enjoy music and therefore, the desktop client should be just as accessible as the application used for smartphones.

To make the application accessible, the developers should clearly label all buttons as part of the universal access standards. the interface should also be simplified for blind users by not including too much graphics.