iOS app accessibility

After becoming very fed up of my Samsung Galaxy J3 I finally decided to buy a new iPhone SE which I received in the same week as a brand new pair of reading glasses. Then followed a 7 day outage courtesy of my internet service provider. Now with everything back and with the phone up and running I am enjoying the smoothness and speed of the app but I am dismayed to find how small is the typeface on the display.

Looking at the accessibility settings I have discovered that type sizes can be increased using a slider, but apparently this works only with apps which incorporate “Dynamic Type”. I have not been able successfully to increase the size of type shown in the app, so should I assume this feature is not yet included in the app for iOS 14.3? If so, are there any plans to include this in the future?

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I’m certainly not aware of any plans. Maybe you should get an iPad. It’s much easier to see everything.

Appreciate that Nigel, but I selected the iPhone SE not only as the cheapest way into an Apple phone, other than risking the refurb market, but also because I wanted a minimum sized phone to fit easily into the pocket of my trousers. With Naim devices both upstairs and down, I would have to buy two tablets or constantly forget that whether I am upstairs or down a single tablet would inevitably, by sod’s law, usually be at the other location. So for me an app which has adjustable type size display is a far better solution.

If I have to keep buying tablets, how can I possibly save up for that XPSDR?

I know what you mean. I have an iPad mini and very rarely use it. I have varifocals and use my iPhone 12 to control the Naim 99% of the time. Mrs HH has an SE and I do find it a bit small. This is not meant to be a silly question - do you have reading glasses from the optician? If they are just the self select ones from the chemist that could well be the problem.

Isn’t the real problem that any app on an iPhone (any smart phone) will have a small font size because of the screen size & this can become an issue that changes with an individuals vision - dare I say with age ??.
Even with my new reading glasses (as from yesterday) I am slowed down with some phone screen font sizes that youngsters seem to have no trouble with.
Additionally with apps that I can increase font or expand screen size on Android & iPad I find it frustrating not to view the whole screen or command line.

This, and other accessibility features, should really be part of any app these days for, amongst other things, exactly the reason you need it for. A while back I made some comments about accessibility in the app and though it has improved some needs more focus. Hope that it is on the product backlog.

Fair point this, but the app should allow at least some size increases without becoming a wild scrollfest as it could reflow a bit to cater for this. By setting the font to a huge size it will create the situation you describe though.

Yes. I have the beginnings of cataracts in both eyes and a weaker right eye. So I have had prescription spectacles for over 25 years now. Also I need to have them as differing pairs of bifocals, one pair close and medium for reading and the desktop computer, one pair medium and distant for driving and dashboard. Hearing is also deteriorating quickly, with NHS aids in both ears. So I’m always getting into the car then going back into the house to fetch the driving glasses. The thought of having to shuffle up and down the stairs for a single tablet is just too much.

It strikes me that we mortgage free greybeards are an important market slice for a very high end (and price) purveyor of gentlemen’s hifi equipment, and the app should reflect that.

What would be ideal is a phone app which has dynamic type and can also be turned from portrait to landscape. So you could home in on vertical lists in portrait mode then turn to look in greater clarity over longer but fewer lines in landscape mode.

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I have reading glasses and progressives. I agree that the app could use improvement. Fortunately, I rarely use it. Most of the time, I use iPeng, which works with the Logitech Media Server (which can stream to Chrome-enabled devices). IPeng has created a much better interface in this regard.

Just charged and powered up the Galaxy J3 and found that the type size on the Android app is definitely larger than on the iPhone app. The screen size is marginally smaller on the iPhone but not enough to account for the difference in type size, I would have thought? So its not just my eyesight deteriorating at an exponential rate after all.

@jegreenwood, thanks, but the thought that the answer to my problem with a piece of software lies in the use of yet more different pieces of software just makes me shudder at the prospect. Age has definitely caused not only fading senses, but also a growing level of technophobia which unfortunately does not fade with familiarity.

Thinking back, it was only that the idea of streaming from a music server and dispensing with actual media was so attractive as a concept which enticed me through the front door of my Naim dealer in the first place. It all seemed so conceptually right, or a ‘neat idea’ as the north Americans say. Little did I realise…

Perhaps I need a lorgnette, which I could hold at different distances from whatever screen to get the required magnification? It could hang around my neck on a piece of string, thus always to hand in any part of the house. Only half joking there.

You can indeed dare Mike. Actually I have just done a side by side comparison.

On the Galaxy J3 when you open the Albums tag and select list format as opposed to tiles the Android app shows 5 albums, with clear type size which I find easily readable.

Using the iPhone SE the app shows 9 albums in virtually the same size piece of screen real estate, but with consequently smaller album artwork images and very small type size which is at the lowest limit of legibility for me even with my most recently prescribed reading glasses.

This suggests a deliberate, differing choice in the design of the two apps. Could it be that the iOS one was designed to best fit a tablet but the Android one was designed to best fit a phone?

No problem. I wasn’t really suggesting that. Just noting that you can make controllers work on an iPhone.

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My impression is that even an iPhone with a larger screen doesn’t give you larger text. Just bigger blank areas between the consistently small text. Given the relatively high age of many Naim customers, this strikes me as a pretty fundamental failure to address the needs of your core customers.
One for the Feature Requests thread, perhaps. We’re told that guys at Naim do actually read it!

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As a relative noob Chris I would not have felt comfortable to express myself in such a direct manner, but this does sum up what I’m really thinking and I ‘liked’ your post with real conviction.

Better phone, smooth and quick page loading and response, when you leave the phone aside and the screen fades to black then pick it up again to go back to the playlist it appears quickly, always with the dark background highlighting the track now playing. So lots to like about the iPhone experience. Legibility is a definite letdown, however.

I have posted on the Feature Request thread as you suggest.

Nope, the real problem is not the user. Fantastically ableist response there by the way!

The real problem is a failure to understand the basics of accessibility. Thousands of apps manage to use the space perfectly well on my SE. Naim don’t. Ergo I rarely use the app for my sons Muso QB and it made it a much easier decision to move to a non Naim source. An explicit cost exists for a failure to address access issues.

For an organisation whose user base will be facing poorer vision and hearing it’s fundamentally poor “will that do” decision making and ultimately, because everyone benefits from accessibility done properly, it will cost them money when customers look at the whole package and say “no thanks”.

The NDX2 screen must be nice for some people but increasingly people prefer their devices precisely because they’re more accessible in every sense on a phone or a tablet. Even looking at my 202 the labels are unreadable for me, my wife and a 15 year old with perfect vision.

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Agree the problem is the approach on the app. I have both iPhones and iPads and I have a hard time reading the ever decreasing font size from app makers in general.

Naim, live a little and increase the font size - what could it really hurt? I can scroll to the right if needed.

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