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Windows 10: Accessibility & Zoom Text

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015 by | Filed Under: Windows 10
 
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A reader wrote with some concern over accessibility options in Windows 10. Nellie asks:  “I have been told not to download Windows 10 because it is not compatible with Zoom Text 10.  Is this so?  If it is, when will Zoom Text update its Version – will it be in time for us who use it to still get Windows 10 free??”

Great question. For those not familiar with ZoomText, it’s a program that offers magnifying features and a screen reader. According to their website, they are currently working on making sure ZoomText works with Windows 10 and just putting the final adjustments on the software. After all, the final version of Windows 10 has only been available for about a month, so it takes some time to get everything right. Right not, the Microsoft Compatibility Center says ZoomText Magnifier is compatible, but says there’s not enough info to know if ZoomText Magnifier Reader or ZoomText have issues yet.

zoom-text-box

I don’t have a timetable for when Zoom Text might update, but you have until July 29, 2016 to take advantage of the free upgrade. But there’s an alternative to Zoom Text that won’t cost you a penny.

Windows 10 has built-in accessibility features very similar to what Zoom Text offers. A screen reader and a magnifier are included in the options.

Click Settings on your Windows 10 Start Menu.

settings-search

Then choose Ease of Access.

ease-of-access

Choose Narrator and you can turn on a screen reader.

ease-of-access-narrator

You can also select multiple magnification options.

ease-of-access-magnifier

I get way more into detail on all of the various option in our Ultimate Guide to Windows 10, but there are a wide range of choices to assist anyone using Windows 10 who has visual, hearing or mobility impairment.

~ Cynthia

 

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One Response to “Windows 10: Accessibility & Zoom Text”

  1. Carl R. - New Philadelphia, Ohio says:

    Currently, I’ use ZoomText 10.1 on Windows 7 Pro, 64 bit. It’s FAIR TO OK!
    I’ve been saying for a while now “NOT TO UPGRADE UNTIL THE BUGGS ARE OUT OF WIN. 10″. As for the “SO CALLED” accessibility features of Windows, they are very LAME! Once you use the ZoomText features, you find the Microsoft items very difficult to use in comparison. In win 7, there are buggs too, because ZoomText 10 was designed for Win.8, but I’m not about to attemp to go “(gag) THAT NIGHTMARE”! The staff at A I Squared, creaters of ZoomText are working on making ZT. 10 working in Win. 10 and not Win. 7, so the current buggs I have will just be tolerated until I upgrade. Some of the buggs are like hearing “CHEVRON” every time I hover the mouse over the task bar, or a nastier bugg which causes MS WORD 2013 to CRASH! OUCH!
    On the thing of accessability, I have a MAJOR BEEF with CHROME! The GOOGLE guys refuse to make CHROME ACCESSABLE FOR THE VISUALLY IMPAIRED! This would be simple, just put a option of “OVER RIDING SCREEN COLORS AND FONTS” in the options. Fire Fox and Explorer do this, Chrome can too. I use a REVERSE color scheme, black backround with white text. but the other way like most people use is too difficult to see for me. Even if they would have Chrome use Windows colors on ALL PAGES, that would help.

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