Apple Introduces New iOS 18 Features for People with Disabilities 

Apple is developing a range of new features tailored for people with disabilities in the upcoming iOS 18 and macOS 15.

Apple is developing a range of new features tailored for people with disabilities in the upcoming iOS 18 and macOS 15, expected to be unveiled during the annual WWDC 2024 conference in June, according to leaks published by MacRumors. These updates include enhancements to existing accessibility features in Apple’s operating systems, alongside new functionalities debuting with these releases. 

Adaptive Voice Shortcuts 

This new feature allows Apple device users to activate or deactivate an accessibility feature by specifying a particular phrase, supporting various accessibility functions like VoiceOver, Voice Control, Zoom, and more. 

Categorizing Spoken Phrases 

Apple is also working on a feature within the Live Speech app called Categories, enabling users to create tabs labeled with user-chosen names. Each tab will store user-entered phrases for different situations, like shopping or dining, facilitating more natural interaction in these environments. 

Font Size Control 

Leaks also revealed Apple’s work on a feature to control text size in various apps on Mac with the upcoming macOS 15. This will allow users to adjust text sizes within specific applications for a more comfortable user experience. The new report confirms this feature will extend to additional apps like Books, News, Stocks, Tips, and Weather. 

Changing Font Size in Menu Bar 

There’s also work on allowing font size adjustments in the Menu Bar in the next macOS version, but official confirmation is pending. 

Apple is reportedly working on numerous other new accessibility features, including eye movement tracking technology processed locally on Apple devices. 

Enhanced Listening Experience 

Mark Gurman of Bloomberg anticipates that iOS 18 will bring advanced features to AirPods, supporting a specialized mode to enhance hearing capabilities for those with hearing impairments. 

Apple has a long history of introducing hearing enhancement features for iPhone users. In 2018, it introduced Live Listen with iOS 12, using the iPhone’s microphone to amplify sound for AirPods. In 2021, the Conversation Boost feature was launched, capturing audio from in front of the user and delivering it clearly to the wearer of AirPods Pro, ensuring clear and smooth communication. 

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