Tips and facts

iOS 17: Update or wait?

Intermittent VoiceOver issues with iOS 17 that might impact you!

iOS 17 was released today (September 18, 2023). As a rule of thumb, it is suggested that users who rely on accessibility features wait before updating when a major release is first available. Read the reviews and wait at least for .1 or later versions are available. The first updates after a major release will often include accessibility fixes.

Student opportunities

With a new release, encourage your student to research any new mainstream features, accessibility features, and most importantly, any bugs that might impact the student’s device. For iOS accessibility updates, it is recommended to check AppleVis. Also follow your favorite blind blogger who reports on updates, check FaceBook pages, and do thorough internet searches. Does your device/model have any bugs? Any issues with apps that you use regularly? Any glitches with your peripheral devices, such as a braille display? Any critical VoiceOver bugs? Once you determine whether it is safe to install the latest version, have fun trying out all the exciting new features!

Teachers, encourage your students to actively be involved in the decision-making on whether to update now or wait. This is an opportunity to encourage research, to connect and find mentors, and to weigh the pros and cons. It is also important that the student understands how to problem-solve tech bugs. These are life-long skills!

iOS 17

AppleVis reports:

“Some users may encounter an intermittent issue that affects the operation of the VoiceOver double-tap gesture in iOS 17.”

When the VoiceOver focus is on an item/button, VoiceOver users can double tap anywhere on the screen to activate that item. However, with iOS 17, a double-tap may activate the item where the finger physically touches the screen, not the item that has the VoiceOver focus.

See the full AppleVis report.

Scott Davert reports:

“Some braille display users, myself included, have had significant issues with the Focus 5th generation displays. The connection was not stable for me on 2 different phones running iOS 17. I had one instance where the the Focus wouldn’t communicate at all and it took several rounds of trouble shooting to get the connection back. When it did come back, it did some randomly, while I was not interacting with it. Testing with another focus on the latest firmware yielded similar results. On the other hand, some users have also reported having no issues with the Focus at all. Some users have also reported challenges with the Braille Sense 6 and Eurobraille displays.”

Suggestions for random glitches unique to your device

As always, if encountering a bug, especially a VO-related bug, try toggling VoiceOver on/off. Next, try closing all apps and rebooting the iOS device. Finally, if the issue continues and you are using a special VoiceOver voice, try switching to the default VoiceOver voice.

If the bug persists, report it to [email protected].

  1. Brief description of the problem
  2. Frequency of the problem (e.g. always, sometimes, rarely)
  3. Steps to reproduce the problem
  4. Expected result after taking the steps
  5. Actual result after taking the steps
  6. Details of the software and hardware being used

The AAA: Accessible & Affordable Accommodations for Your Home

Two people sit on a couch at a cocktail party, communicating via protactile ASL

Four things the Howe Innovation Center team learned at TechCrunch

Vector silhouette image of two people sitting across a desk during an interview.

College interview tips for disabled students