Modern technology gives us many things.

Apple’s new accessibility features for iPhone and iPad includes Eye Tracking and Music Haptics

Apple has announced a range of new accessibility features coming to iPad and iPhone – including Eye Tracking, Music Haptics and Vocal Shortcuts – which allows users with physical disabilities to still enjoy the best possible experience with their device.

Other new features include Vehicle Motion Cues and more accessibility features for CarPlay.

Apple has brought together the strength of its hardware and software and utilised the power of Apple’s silicon, artificial intelligence and machine learning to make these features possible.

“We believe deeply in the transformative power of innovation to enrich lives,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO.

“That’s why for nearly 40 years, Apple has championed inclusive design by embedding accessibility at the core of our hardware and software.

“We’re continuously pushing the boundaries of technology, and these new features reflect our long-standing commitment to delivering the best possible experience to all of our users.”

Sarah Herrlinger, Apple’s senior director of Global Accessibility Policy and Initiatives said: “Each year, we break new ground when it comes to accessibility.

“These new features will make an impact in the lives of a wide range of users, providing new ways to communicate, control their devices and move through the world.”


Eye Tracking allows users to navigate IPad and iPhone using just their eyes.

The feature is designed for users with physical disabilities and is powered by artificial intelligence.

Eye Tracking uses the front facing camera to set up and calibrate the feature which works across iPad OS and iOS apps without the need for any additional hardware or accessories.

With Eye Tracking, a user can navigate the elements of an app and use Dwell Control to activate each element.

Dwell Control observes the amount of time your eye rests on a particular element and is the equivalent of a button click.

It can also access additional functionality including swipes and other gestures which could be made just with their eyes.


Everyone loves music and a new feature called Music Haptics will be a brand new way for users who are deaf or hard of hearing to experience music on their iPhone.

This feature uses the Taptic Engine on the iPhone which can relay taps, textures and refined vibrations based on the audio of the music.

Music Haptics will work across millions of songs in the Apple Music library and will also be made available as an API for developers to make music accessible in the same way in their own apps.


Vocal Shortcuts makes it possible to assign customised utterances which Siri can understand on the iPhone and iPad to launch tasks and shortcuts.

Another feature called Listen for Atypical Speech allows users to enjoy a wider range of speech recognition that can recognise each specific user’s speech patterns.

It is designed for users who have conditions that affect their speech or that may have suffered a stroke so they can still control their device using their voice in their own way.


If you suffer from motion sickness a new feature called Vehicle Motion Cues may be able to help.

Motion sickness is caused by a sensory conflict between what a person sees and what they’re feeling which can prevent users from comfortably using their iPad or iPhone in a moving vehicle.

What Vehicle Motion Cues does is provide animated dots on the edges of the screen which coincides with the changes in the vehicle’s motion to reduce that sensory conflict without interrupting the main content on the screen.

This feature takes advantage of the sensors built into the iPhone and iPad so it can recognise when a new user is in a moving vehicle and respond accordingly.


CarPlay now has new accessibility features including voice control, colour filters and sound recognition.

Voice Control allows users to navigate CarPlay and control apps using just their voice while sound recognition makes it possible for deaf or hard hearing users to be notified when sounds like car horns and sirens are heard.

And for colour blind users, Colour Filters can adapt the CarPlay interface to make it easier to see and use along with visual accessibility features including bold text and larger text.