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From Joe Bowser <>
Subject Android a11y, Whitelists and Offline Story
Date Thu, 29 Aug 2013 17:25:58 GMT

The last week, I've been doing some preliminary work on Android
accessibility, and after fiddling with Cordova, I've come to some
pretty bad realizations:

1. Android Accessibility in a WebView is achieved the same way we do
PhoneGap, except that their JS is injected from a static server.  This
means that if the app is offline, it's not accessible to the blind

2. Most of Android isn't actually accessible, namely the Play Store,
which is how most people discover apps. "Play Store, Play Store, Play
Store, Play Store" doesn't seem super useful.

3. There's no real point trying to make accessibility work on
Gingerbread, since the accessibility libraries don't really work on
that platform, and aren't as robust.

4. Accessibility is HARD, especially when you're not blind.

5. The splashscreen says "Alert".  WTF?

So, one major issue that I ran into is that you have to whitelist so that you can get the Accessibility Javascript. It'd be
great to see how the accessibility JS works and communicates with the
two interfaces that it adds to the WebView.

BTW: Here's the Java portion of Accessibility on the WebView:

Any ideas on how we can take advantage of this, make it better when
we're offline. Right now, it just treats the webview as one giant
view.  Thoughts on this would be great.


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