Microsoft announces new accessibility assistant coming to Microsoft 365
office software This is to make our products available to more people.
Presented at the annual Ability Summit
(opens in new tab)Microsoft also revealed a host of accessible hardware, improvements to existing products and services, and developments in other business areas, including LinkedIn.
We believe this all comes at a time when the company is diving headlong into artificial intelligence, and is busy rolling out OpenAI and in-house AI assistance to nearly all of its online services to improve employee efficiency. .
Microsoft Accessibility Assistant
Microsoft claims the new Accessibility Assistant is as easy as a spell checker and is designed to help you create more accessible content. It provides great defaults, real-time remediation, and guidance to prevent and fix accessibility issues. Accessibility Assistant was also introduced to the Visual Studio development environment earlier this year.
The company also announced the rollout of 3D printed attachments and grips for the Surface Pen later this year. Already available to enterprise customers using the Microsoft Business Pen and Microsoft Classroom Pen 2, this expansion will significantly increase the number of users who can access supported Surface devices.
The translation tool also received a nice upgrade, adding 13 additional languages, bringing the total speech-to-text language support to 125.
Other general improvements include automatic alt text for images posted to LinkedIn using Azure Cognitive Services,
See AI (opens in new tab) An app designed to help people with visual impairments and low vision navigate their surroundings, and the new Inclusive Design Guidebook (opens in new tab).
The company’s final change came in its latest operating system, Windows 11, which improved the built-in screen reader, Narrator, and supported more braille displays.