Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Accessible Americas III & Mobile Applications for Accessibility

Smartphones have become the most popular way of accessing the internet and apps are the shortcuts to the services we want to consume online. But while the accessibility of mainstream mobile devices has progressed steadily over the past years, apps are still lagging behind. To help raise awareness about the importance of accessibility among app developers and to promote the development of dedicated accessibility apps, the Latin America Regional Office of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) organised with the support of Samsung Brazil the ITU’s Applications for Accessibility Award.

The award aims to promote the creation of innovative and creative solutions to benefit persons with disabilities, bringing more social inclusion and interaction, comfort and quality of life to their daily routine through mobile technologies. The award criteria center around the creativity of the solution, the technical quality and feasibility of the app as well as the user experience. The finalists and winners of the award are being presented at ITU’s Accessible Americas III event, taking place in Mexico City 28-30 November 2016.

The Accessible Americas III event focuses on the importance of actively promoting accessibility policies and invites policy makers, regulators, industry and the disability community to work together in developing a framework to improve the accessibility of ICT, mobile communications, television and video programming. In order to contribute to the development of policies and implementation strategies of ICTs accessibility in the Americas region, the ITU will furthermore offer participants a training program to improve and reinforce their knowledge on this subject.

Accessible Americas III follows the events Accessible Americas and Accessible Americas II, held in Brazil in 2014 and Colombia in 2015 which have helped to raise awareness among governments and assisted ITU Members in the process of elaborating and implementing national ICT policies in regards to accessibility with a view of fulfilling their obligations under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD).

The winners of ITU’s Applications for Accessibility Award will be invited to list their apps for accessibility in the GARI database.

Read about Accessible Americas II: LATAM: Promoviendo la accesibilidad móvil, una app por vez