Google + Adds New Accessibility Features to Hangouts

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google hangoutThe Google Hangouts team has made it clear that accessibility is important. In the past, we have seen the release of  Hangouts Captions, and Take the Floor, two apps that make using Google Hangouts accessible to sign language users.

Yesterday they announced two more accessibility features! The first is an expanded list of keyboard shortcuts. These are helpful for those you don't want to, or cannot use a mouse during a Hangout. To see the full list of keyboard shortcuts, type "?" while in a Hangout.

The second feature is an app called Sign Language Interpreter. With this app, deaf or hard of hearing users can invite an interpreter to sign for them during a Hangout. The image to the right shows how the Hangout is viewed by the Sign Language speaker. When the interpreter is speaking for them, they will be the focus of the Hangout. Pretty cool!

If you use the Sign Language Interpreter app and would like to provide feedback, they recommend using the Sign Language Interpreter forum, linked here.


For over fifteen years, Deque has been helping major corporations, government agencies, and other organizations ensure that their websites and mobile apps are accessible to everyone. We have more than fifteen years of history of serving the federal government, including undertaking the biggest accessibility program that's occurred in the United States government or anywhere. Deque also works with .edu's and mission-focused nonprofits to ensure that their materials and systems are usable and barrier free for users with disabilities. The company invented the first accessibility plug-in software, the first web-based testing platform, and the first server-based accessibility solution. All of these have been created in the service of helping our customers become accessible, advance the goals of their organization, and remove barriers for all users on the web.

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