If you’re looking for examples of inclusive design, you might be surprised to learn that many features we now take for granted were invented with the goal to promote inclusivity. In this article, we showcase some of them to illustrate just how deeply inclusivity has impacted the world of tech.
Inclusive Design Vs. Universal Design
Before we start listing examples of inclusive design, there is one more thing. Inclusive design does not equal universal design. The latter is aimed at the average user. In fact, universal design removes any possible adjustments that could be made for a certain audience (size, shape, even color) to make the item usable to as many people as possible.
On the other hand, inclusive design improves the product for a specific subset of consumers while representing as many of those subsets as possible. Most manufacturers do their best to combine both principles. You could even argue that inclusiveness is a different approach to universal.
Here are top 5 examples of inclusive design in tech.
1. Transcription & Voice Input
There are many reasons why a person can find it hard to input text via conventional means. Voice technology is one of the best ways to ensure typing is accessible to everyone.
Speech-to-text has become the staple of many apps, both general-purpose (Google Keyboard) and specialized (Senstone). While the former focuses on simple texts and commands, the latter is capable of smart editing and formatting.
All in all, artificial intelligence has made voice input a full-fledged alternative to regular typing.
2. Support For Non-English Symbols
This inclusivity feature is especially important because it helps people from around the world access products and services developed with English language in mind.
Many surnames feature hyphens, apostrophes, and/or various diacritics. Some full names are simply too long if you only account for English (for example, Picasso is short for Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso). Not to mention the Roman script is not the only one in the world.
3. Font Size
One of the most common inclusivity features is font size adjustment. According to WHO, more than 2 billion people suffer some form of vision impairment, so it’s safe to say the demand is high.
Bigger text allows to reduce eye strain, helping your eyesight in the long run and preventing the discomfort caused by squinting. And those who only wear glasses or contacts on special occasions can avoid reaching for their glasses every time they’d like to check a notification.
4. Automatic Subtitling
Automatic subtitles is another great instance of inclusive design. YouTube, for example, is famous for its instant speech-to-text and translation of video subtitles. While the quality is pretty great as of now, it just keeps getting better as Google improves and upgrades the software.
Subtitles are important for many people, most of all for the hard of hearing. But they are also helpful if you have trouble understanding the language or simply watch your videos on mute.
5. Color Adjustments
Inclusive design examples encompass certain options that can completely alter the experience. Color blindness mode is one of them. Be it a web browser or a video game, letting users adjust the colors to their liking is a good idea. 1 in 12 men are color blind, so the number of consumers who process visuals differently is always significant. For many of them, the regular color scheme can render the product unusable.
This article has been brought to you by Senstone Inc. We are dedicated to making advanced technology accessible to everyone regardless of age and technical know-how. Visit our homepage at senstone.io to learn more.