Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Accessible technology for the disabled – an opportunity that benefits everyone

Chris Lewis of Lewis Insight
Wednesday 09 December 15

At the Total Telecom Festival in December I was delighted to chair a roundtable discussion on accessibility. What is accessibility?  Simply put, how people with disabilities can use the same technology as their abled bodied peers for work and personal lives.    Firstly, it is great to have a mainstream conference bringing the accessibility topic out into the open. Secondly, it was excellent to have participants from analysts, vendors, service providers as well as people with family who are disabled or responsible for accessibility/inclusivity within large corporations.   The numbers and the business case for accessibility are compelling. With a billion people in the world (1 in 7) suffering from some form of disability, most of us will be impacted at some point in our lives. 4% of children, 10% of the working population but over 75% of the over 65s have their lives affected by hearing impairment, vision impairment, physical or cognitive conditions.  And, many of those with more acute conditions are unable to enter or remain in the workforce due to accessibility issues.   Why is this especially important to the telecoms industry? Fundamentally because mobile devices and broadband connectivity will be a vital link in allowing the disabled to participate fully in work and social activities…

At the Total Telecom Festival in December I was delighted to chair a roundtable discussion on accessibility. What is accessibility?  Simply put, how people with disabilities can use the same technology as their abled bodied peers for work and personal lives.    Firstly, it is great to have a mainstream conference bringing the accessibility topic out into the open. Secondly, it was excellent to have participants from analysts, vendors, service providers as well as people with family who are disabled or responsible for accessibility/inclusivity within large corporations.   The numbers and the business case for accessibility are compelling. With a billion people in the world (1 in 7) suffering from some form of disability, most of us will be impacted at some point in our lives. 4% of children, 10% of the working population but over 75% of the over 65s have their lives affected by hearing impairment, vision impairment, physical or cognitive conditions.  And, many of those with more acute conditions are unable to enter or remain in the workforce due to accessibility issues.   Why is this especially important to the telecoms industry? Fundamentally because mobile devices and broadband connectivity will be a vital link in allowing the disabled to participate fully in work and social activities…

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