Mobile Accessibility Tips

Smartphones and other mobile devices, such as tablets and wearables, come with many built-in accessibility features that are helpful for people living with disability and those who experience limitations in hearing, vision, dexterity or learning ability.

There are also many mobile apps designed to assist people who have specific accessibility requirements.

The Global Accessibility Reporting Initiative (GARI) was developed to provide a central point of information for consumers interested in the various accessibility features of mobile phones, tablets and apps.

You can visit the GARI and find out more about various accessibility features available on mobile devices. You can also search their database to find a mobile phone, device or app that will be suitable based on your particular accessibility needs.

Choosing a mobile

With today’s mobile devices having in-built accessibility features, people living with disability have many choices in mobile phones, tablets and wearables.

There are also choices to make regarding networks, service providers and payment plans. See our general tips regarding buying a mobile and managing your mobile spend for help with these choices.

Below are some tips to keep in mind if you are looking for an app or mobile device that has the best accessibility features for your particular needs.

Tips for choosing your mobile:

  • Take this “test drive a mobile” checklist with you when you visit mobile phone retailers so you can make notes.
  • Visit stores when sales people are less busy, such as weekdays in mid-morning or mid-afternoon. It may even be a good idea to call first to see when would be the best time to visit the store.
  • Most retailers will have at least some experience in dealing with customers with disabilities and some will have special facilities that will assist those customers – it may be a good idea to call some service providers first to see which store may be best able to assist you.
  • Do some online research before you make a visit to a store:

Visit Vodafone Australia’s Disability Services page and more tips from Vodafone here

Visit Telstra’s Disability Services page

Visit Optus’s Disability Services page

  • If you use a hearing aid or have a cochlear implant, mobiles used on 3G/4G networks should not cause any interference issues, however, it is still advisable to test a mobile before buying.
  • Finally, consider carefully the features you may need on your mobile before you go shopping and research each manufacturer’s accessibility features by visiting manufacturer websites to help you choose the right brand of handset for your needs:







Motorola Mobility