TPGi is excited to announce the product launch of JAWS Connect, a first-of-its-kind solution that delivers assistive technology user feedback directly to the enterprise organizations seeking to deliver accessible digital experiences. JAWS Connect was made possible through collaboration between Vispero’s TPGi and Freedom Scientific (the maker of JAWS for Windows) brands. JAWS Connect is a product that finally bridges the gap between the largest community of assistive technology users in the world and the organizations that are building websites and applications, placing usability at the center of digital accessibility.
JAWS Connect is a simple no-code solution for websites and applications that gives JAWS screen reader users the ability to easily and quickly provide direct feedback at the point they face barriers, enabling organizations to quickly identify and react to solve those challenges. This gives historically underrepresented users a voice in digital accessibility.
Both organizations and screen readers benefit from JAWS Connect. Screen reader users are empowered to convey their experience directly to organizations; companies have a rapid, easy, and cost-effective avenue for acquiring critical usability feedback necessary for improving accessible user experiences.
“Without easy-to-use paths to identify barriers and resolve them, individuals who are blind or who have low vision often abandon their efforts or even turn to legal action. Enabling this direct communication through JAWS Connect will provide both the end-user and the organization the ability to work together to solve these challenges, providing better user experiences for all screen reader users while reducing legal risks for organizations that participate,” stated Matt Ater, Vice President, Software and Corporate Business Development at Vispero.
Any organization can benefit from this new capability by creating an ARC Platform account and setting their digital properties up for monitoring. The simplicity of how it works for both the end-user and organizations is key to success.
“To date, there has been minimal crowd-sourcing of accessibility QA focused on the people actually impacted. JAWS Connect taps into an extensive community of users, empowering those individuals by giving them an easy path to say ‘This isn’t working for me’ and putting that feedback directly into the hands of people that can fix it. It’s a groundbreaking new channel for communication that will ultimately result in better usability across the internet,” said Travis Brown, Vice President of Sales and Marketing.
A primary goal of the ADA, Section 508, and WCAG has been to ensure people with disabilities can still participate in our digital society and be able to use many of the essential applications and functions critical to our daily lives. While the technical WCAG standards serve a valuable role in providing the framework for testing the underlying code, the ultimate goal is to ensure it is actually usable. The W3C even goes as far as providing specific guidance on how to incorporate assistive technology user feedback as part of the WAI guidance.
JAWS Connect delivers the mechanisms for organizations to fulfill this underlying objective in a fast, easy, and cost-effective manner, ensuring the websites and applications are actually usable for individuals who are blind or have low vision.
“It is high time we connect the user to the problem-solving process. Technical compliance alone should not be the objective. Understanding and improving the user experience is equally important. JAWS Connect makes this possible by channeling direct feedback from customers, employees, and other JAWS users into the workflow of the teams that solve usability problems. It enables a more inclusive approach to accessibility and results in a better product.” said David O’Neill, General Manager.
To learn more about JAWS Connect or to get started, please visit the TPGi website.
TPGi is an accessibility solutions provider that supports all phases of accessibility through best-in-class management software and professional services. We partner with the best-known brands in the world to achieve end-to-end accessibility for their digital assets. Our clients span a variety of industries including retail/eCommerce, software/technology, publishing, banking/finance, healthcare, government, and higher education. TPGi experts are globally recognized for their contributions to accessibility standards and guidelines.