Accessible Apple: The 12 Requests of Christmas, Day 7

This is the seventh post in our annual 12-part series covering the accessibility features we would like to see Apple bring to its products in the coming year.

This series is being put together by Accessibility Editor Alex Jurgensen, with the help of several contributors.

For the seventh request of Christmas, we ask Apple to give to us:

7. An Enhanced Spellchecker for macOS

macOS has a built-in spellchecker that can be used to check for misspelled words across the system, including messages in Mail, documents in TextEdit, web forms in Safari, and just about anywhere else you can enter text. This feature is extremely handy, but it sometimes feels half-baked. For example, the only indicator VoiceOver users can use to determine whether spellchecking has completed is a system sound played at the end of the process. There are also several bugs that can lead to random words being inserted into the text being spellchecked.

We would like Apple to improve the spellchecker and make an already useful tool a great user experience. Some of the things we would like to see added or improved are:

 Add keyboard shortcuts for actions such as defining a word, changing a word, learning a word, and ignoring a word.
 Include a way for VoiceOver users to see the context for the misspelled word being presented without having to leave and reenter the spellchecker.
 A "change all" action to change all occurrences of a misspelled word.
 Bug fixes and improvements.
 A more clearly defined completion step. Perhaps a dialog that indicates spellchecking is complete.

The above suggestions are just a starting point. If Apple were to add some of the aforementioned features, it would make the spellchecker a more efficient and user friendly tool for everyone.

The Previous Posts:

6. A Rewritten "Activities" System for VoiceOver on the Mac

5. A Reimplementation of the Classic Mac Startup Chime

4. Braille Display and Keyboard Support for the Apple TV

3. A Free USB Type C to USB Type A Dongle

2. 6-Key Braille Input for macOS

1. A New Speech Manager

We hope you are enjoying the 12 Requests of Christmas series. On behalf of all of us here at Apple World Today, we would like to wish you a Happy New Year!