Mozilla’s mission is to ensure the Internet is a global public resource, open and accessible to all. An Internet that truly puts people first, where individuals can shape their own experience and are empowered, safe and independent.
People with disabilities can experience huge benefits from technology but can also find it frustrating or worse, downright unusable. Firefox is committed to building products and services that are not just usable for people with disabilities, but a delight to use.
The Firefox Accessibility Team will deliver those delightful experiences by providing top notch AT support across all of our Firefox platforms; ensuring that as Firefox architecture and features evolve, accessibility is always included and never an afterthought; and offering web developers great specifications, tools, and features helping them build highly accessible websites and apps.
Today Firefox offers solid desktop screen reader support with NVDA or JAWS on Windows, and Orca on Linux; but Firefox has almost no support for VoiceOver on Mac. In 2020 the team will deliver full support for VoiceOver on Mac beginning with a preview for developers around mid-year and a consumer-ready feature set by year’s end.
Solid screen reader support is nice, but stellar screen reader support is even better. In 2020 the Firefox Accessibility Team will tackle a collection of text bugs and other cases that may not completely fail but can definitely frustrate AT users.
On the mobile front, the Team is working towards the launch of the next-generation Firefox for Android browser, codenamed Fenix, with fast and accurate TalkBack integration that will be a great experience for new users and an a11y upgrade for users migrating from the legacy Android Firefox.
Not quite as visible but critically important, in 2020 the Team will be working to ensure the Firefox accessibility API, which powers screen readers and other assistive technology, will be “fission” ready. Fission is the Mozilla project to re-architect Firefox, isolating each website in its own computer process for improved security. The Firefox Accessibility Team will also work closely with the Desktop and Mobile Firefox front-end teams to ensure that every new browser feature that ships is delightfully accessible.
It's not enough, however, to make Firefox accessible and delightful for people with disabilities. Our mission compels us to help make the web itself accessible and delightful too. We will accomplish this in 2020 with improvements and feature additions to our accessibility developer tools, deeper participation in the web standards process, and implementation of new specifications in the Gecko browser engine that powers websites and apps in Firefox.
And one more thing. While we certainly will not have time to complete the project this year, the Team is going to prototype Windows Narrator support in Firefox. We hope that will set us up to release something useful next year.