Happy New Year and welcome to 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 iPhone SE 2
The iPhone SE is my personal iPhone of choice. As a visually impaired user who does not depend on seeing things on screen, instead relying on VoiceOver to read the display out loud, I, like many other blind and partially sighted users, value the small form factor of the iPhone SE. Together with the Touch ID sensor, which allows blind and partially sighted users to unlock their phones by reaching into the pocket or purse where they are being kept, the SE's design is a great balance of power, performance, and affordability, all considerations that are important to consumers living in the modern tech world.
The iPhone SE was Apple's answer to users who wished to see the 2013 iPhone 5S get an update. The device uses a combination of components from the iPhone 6 and 6S, while retaining the smaller form factor of the 5S.
What we would like to see Apple do with the iPhone SE is improve its specs to something akin to the iPhone 8, including Touch ID 2. The iPhone SE 2 (as we're calling it) could then be placed as a budget-friendly option at the bottom of Apple's iPhone lineup and provide a much-needed entry point for either users who cannot afford to upgrade to the iPhone 8 or who prefer the smaller form factor. The affordability consideration is important when considering that users requiring assistive technologies are often in the lowest income brackets. For these users especially, it is important to have an option that gives them the freedom to gain access to the valuable assistive technology opportunities the iPhone provides.
For more things we'd like Apple to include in upcoming releases, please see:
Accessible Apple articles take a significant amount of volunteer effort to put together. This year, we ask readers to consider making a donation to support the development of an independent living skills training centre for training Canadians who are blind, partially sighted, and deaf blind in independent living skills such as assistive technology, literacy, independent travel, cooking, etc. These skills are essential and training centres help provide them. More information and donation links can be found here.