Accessibility Options in Browsers

Accessibility Options in Web Browsers

The Official Web Portal of the East Garo Hills District, Meghalaya, has been built with an aim to provide maximum accessibility and usability to its visitors.

This website can be viewed from a variety of devices such as Desktop or Laptop computers, web-enabled mobile devices, WAP phones, PDAs, etc. However, currently Portable Document Format (PDF) files are not fully accessible.

We aim to be standards compliant and follow principles of usability and universal design, which should help all visitors of this website.

This website is designed to meet the Guidelines for Indian Government Websites and also adheres to level AA of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (W.C.A.G.) 2.0 laid down by the World Wide Web Consortium (W.3.C.). Part of the information in the website is also made available through links to external Websites. External Websites are maintained by the respective departments who are responsible for making their sites accessible.

Accessibility Features in Windows Web Browsers for Low Vision Users

For many years, Web browsers have had varying degrees of built-in accessibility, but it’s been a pretty bumpy road for the user with low vision. By 2006 Internet Explorer 7 added magnification to Web browsing, but this first version often changed the page formatting so that users would need to use the horizontal scroll bar as they read the page. At the same time, Firefox 2 had a free add-in that didn’t require the horizontal scrolling, but didn’t enlarge the page images. Built-in Web browser accessibility—magnification, contrast, colors, and text-to-speech has improved since those original webpage magnifiers. The browser landscape has certainly changed in recent years and there are some great built-in accessibility features available on popular Windows-based web browsers like Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Microsoft Edge.

Change Text Size in Internet Explorer 5 or 6

  1. Open the View menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + V)
  2. Select the Text Size option (Keyboard Shortcut: X).
  3. Choose your preferred text size. The text on our website should now have changed to reflect your choice.

Change Text Size in Internet Explorer 7 or 8

This version of Internet Explorer has a zoom feature, which allows you to enlarge the entire browser window. To do this:

  1. Press and hold down the CTRL key on your keyboard.
  2. At the same time as holding the CTRL key:
    • press the '+' key to increase the size of the text and images or
    • press the ‘-‘ key to decrease the size of the text and images.
  3. Keep repeating Step 2 until you reach the desired size. You can return to the standard size by pressing CTRL + ‘0’.

You can also change the text size. The way to do this does depend on how the site has been built. For many sites you only need to do the following:

  1. Open the Page menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + P).
  2. Select the Text Size option (Keyboard Shortcut: X).
  3. Choose your preferred text size. The text on the website should now have changed to reflect your choice.

Some websites have fixed the size of their text ('hard-coded') and as a result these websites will not show the change you have just made. If you would like to use your larger text on these sites follow the following steps:

Additional accessibility features

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + O).
  2. Select Internet Options (Keyboard Shortcut: O).
  3. From the General tab, Select the Accessibility button (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + E).
  4. Choose your desired options from:
    • Ignore colours specified on webpages if you want your browser to ignore colours specified on web pages (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + C to toggle on/off).
    • Ignore font styles specified on webpages if you want your browser to ignore font styles specified on web pages (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + S to toggle on/off).
    • Ignore font sizes specified on webpages if you want to ignore font sizes specified on web pages (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + Z to toggle on/off).
    • Format documents using my style sheet and then type the name of your style sheet, or navigate to it by selecting the Browse button (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + D to toggle on/off).
  5. Select OK on the Accessibility screen.
  6. Select OK on the Internet Options screen.
  7. On returning back to Internet Explorer, select View menu.
  8. Select Text Size.
  9. Select your desired text size. The text on the website should now have changed to reflect your choice.

Choose colours used on web pages

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + O).
  2. Select Internet Options (Keyboard Shortcut: O).
  3. From the General tab, select the Colors button that is in the bottom left-hand corner (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + O).
  4. Ensure the Use Windows colors check box is not selected (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + W to toggle on/off).
  5. Choose your desired colours by selecting the colour box and then choosing from the available colours. You can change the colours for text, background, visited and unvisited hyperlinks and hover.
  6. Select OK on the Colors screen.
  7. Select OK on the Internet Options screen.

Choose the font style and size used on web pages

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + O).
  2. Select Internet Options (Keyboard Shortcut: O).
  3. From the General tab, select the Fonts button from the bottom of the Internet Options screen (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + N).
  4. Select the web page font and/or plain text font you want to use from the drop-down list.
  5. Select OK on the Fonts screen.
  6. Select OK on the Internet Options screen.

Mozilla Firefox has the advantage of custom built add-ons that may enhance accessibility like the Accessibility Extension( that allows keyboard access to document structure.

Magnify your screen

This feature will increase and decrease the size of text and images on the screen for better visibility.

  1. Press and hold down the CTRL key on your keyboard.
  2. At the same time as holding the CTRL key:
    1. press the + key to increase the size of the text and images or
    2. press the ‘-‘ key to decrease the size of the text and images.
  3. Keep repeating Step 2 until you reach the desired size.

Choose colours used on web page

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + T).
  2. Select Options (Keyboard Shortcut: O).
  3. Select the Content option which is in the top-middle of the menu.
  4. Select the Colors button in the middle, right-hand side of the Options box (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + C).
  5. Choose your desired colours by selecting the colour box and then choosing from the available colours. You can change the colours for text, background, and visited and unvisited hyperlinks.
  6. Uncheck the box next to Allow pages to choose their own colors, instead of my selections above (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + A).
  7. Select OK on the Colors screen.
  8. Select OK on the Options screen.

Choose the font style and size used on web pages

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + T).
  2. Select Options (Keyboard Shortcut: O).
  3. Select the Content option which is in the top-middle of the menu.
  4. Under Fonts and Colors, use the drop-down menus to select the font and font size of your choice.

  5. To disable custom fonts (if a website uses them):

  6. Select the Advanced button in the middle, right-hand side of the Options box (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + A).
  7. Select the web page font and/or plain text font you want to use from the drop-down list.
  8. Uncheck the box next to Allow pages to choose their own fonts, instead of my selections above (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + A).
  9. Select OK on the Advanced screen.
  10. Select OK on the Options screen.

Additional accessibility features

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + T)
  2. Select Options (Keyboard Shortcut: O).
  3. Select the Advanced option which is on the right of the top menu.
  4. Under Accessibility, choose your desired options from:
    • Always use the cursor keys to navigate within pages (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + C)
    • Search for text when I start typing (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + X)
    • Warn me when websites try to redirect or reload the page (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + B)
  5. Select OK on the Options screen.

Google Chrome is an open-source browser project. Google Chrome’s unique selling point is its speed, both time to launch and page load times.

Magnify your screen

This feature will increase and decrease the size of text and images on the screen for better visibility.

  1. Press and hold down the CTRL key on your keyboard.
  2. At the same time as holding the CTRL key:
    • press the '+' key to increase the size of the text and images or
    • press the ‘-‘ key to decrease the size of the text and images.
  3. Keep repeating Step 2 until you reach the desired size. You can return to the standard size by pressing CTRL + ‘0’.

The above method works only on the currently opened webpage and you need to set the zoom level every time. Don’t worry, Chrome also allows you to setup the page zoom level permanently for all the pages.

  1. Select Settings from the Chrome menu and navigate to Appearance section.
  2. Click on the Page zoom dropdown and set the percentage of zoom for your convenience.
  3. Now close all open windows and relaunch the browser.
  4. You will see the zoom level is set as per your preference.
  5. Remember, website content may look different at higher zoom level. For example, with horizontal scroll bar.
  6. You need to set the level for your eye convenience and for your monitor display.

Customizing Font Size and Face

Similar to page zoom level, you can setup the fonts for your reading.

  1. Open Chrome and navigate to Chrome Menu and select Settings options at the bottom of the menu list.
  2. On the Settings page, scroll down and check under Appearance section.
  3. Select the Font size from the dropdown. Chrome recommends medium level, you can choose large or small as per your convenience.
  4. Next click on Customize fonts option.
  5. Modify the font face, size and width to your taste and exit the Settings page.

If you want to customize more, click on Advanced font settings. This will take you to the Advanced Font Settings extension page in Chrome Web Store. This extension will help you to customize fonts for individual language.

  1. To install the Change Color extension, either visit the Google Chrome Extensions website using Google Chrome and search for the extension named Change Colors or go directly to the Change Color extension .
  2. Click on the install button to install the Change Color extension.
  3. Once installed, you will see the Change Colors icon at end of URL field.
  4. Right-click on the icon and select Options to change background colour, text colour, links colour and visited links colour.
  5. Once your options have been set, you can click on the icon to apply/remove your colour options.

Magnifying your screen

This feature will increase and decrease the size of text and images on the screen for better visibility.

  1. Press and hold down the COMMAND key on your keyboard.
  2. At the same time as holding the COMMAND key:
    • press the '+' key to increase the size of the text and images or
    • press the ‘-‘ key to decrease the size of the text and images.
  3. Keep repeating Step 2 until you reach the desired size.

Choose colours and fonts used on web pages

To change the type, size and colour of your font and the background colour:

  1. Select the Safari menu, the select Preferences.
  2. Select Appearance, which is the second option on the right.
  3. Under Standard font, select the Select button. Choose your desired font type, size and colour.
  4. Click OK on the Preferences screen.

To set the minimum font size for all web pages:

  1. Select the Safari menu, then select Preferences.
  2. Select Advanced, which is the far right menu item.
  3. Under Universal Access, find Never use font sizes smaller than and select your chosen font size from the drop-down menu.
  4. Click OK on the Preferences screen.

Magnifying your screen

This feature will increase and decrease the size of text and images on the screen for better visibility.

  1. Press and hold down the CTRL key on your keyboard.
  2. At the same time as holding the CTRL key:
    • press the '+' key to increase the size of the text and images or
    • press the ‘-‘ key to decrease the size of the text and images.
  3. Keep repeating Step 2 until you reach the desired size. You can return to the standard size by pressing CTRL + ‘0’.

Choosing colours used on web pages

To change the colour of the fonts used in Opera, see Choosing the font style and size used on web pages.

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + T).
  2. Select Preferences (Keyboard Shortcut: R).
  3. Select Web Pages, which is the second last option on the menu tabs at the top of box.
  4. Under Choose preferred fonts and colors for pages without specific style, choose your desired colours by selecting the colour box and then choosing from the available colours. You can change the background colour and the colour for visited and unvisited hyperlinks.
  5. Click OK on the Preferences screen.

Choosing the font style and size used on web pages

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + T)
  2. Select Preferences (Keyboard Shortcut: R).
  3. Select Web Pages, which is the second last option on the menu tabs at the top of box.
  4. Under Choose preferred fonts and colors for pages without specific style heading, click on the grey box to the right of Normal font. Its default value will generally be Times New Roman.
  5. Choose the font, size, colour and any other features you may want to change.
  6. Select OK on the Select font screen.
  7. Select OK on the Preferences screen.

Additional accessibility features

Change the text size of Opera’s toolbars and menus

The Preferences menu is located at Tools > Preferences on Linux and Windows, and Opera > Preferences on Mac.

To change toolbar text size:

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + T).
  2. Select Preferences (Keyboard Shortcut: R).
  3. Select Advanced, which is the last option on the menu tabs at the top of box.
  4. Select Fonts from the list on the side of the box.
  5. Select Browser toolbars from the list and click Choose.
  6. Choose a font other than (Default) (it can be the same font, but without the (Default) prefix, see the list), and choose the size you prefer.
  7. Click OK on the Font screen.
  8. Select OK on the Preferences screen.

To change menu text size:

  1. Select the Tools menu (Keyboard Shortcut: ALT + T).
  2. Select Preferences (Keyboard Shortcut: R).
  3. Select Advanced, which is the last option on the menu tabs at the top of box.
  4. Select Fonts from the list on the side of the box.
  5. Select Browser menus from the list and click Choose.
  6. Choose a font other than (Default) (it can be the same font, but without the (Default) prefix, see the list), and choose the size you prefer.
  7. Click OK on the Font screen.
  8. Select OK on the Preferences screen.

The latest version of Microsoft Edge also offers a Zoom feature using the familiar keyboard shortcuts Ctrl plus +, Ctrl plus -, and Ctrl plus 0 to increase, decrease, and remove magnification from the browser window. Font size and style can be managed from the Main Menu in Settings > Appearance > Fonts. Options for Font Size and Customize Fonts can be managed here. An overall font size may be selected by choosing one of five sizes from Very Small to Very Large. Customizing Fonts provides more options for font styles. For example, Arial might be selected as the San Serif font of choice. The Font Size and Minimum Font Size each have a slider to select between Tiny (9 pt.) and Large (72 pt.). Also, in the Settings > Appearance menu, Edge has a Theme option. Theme offers a dropdown with Light, Dark, and System Default.

Edge also offers extensions to add to the browser’s functionality. Select Extensions from the main menu to see which extensions are installed. From the Extensions menu select Get Extensions from the Microsoft Store, to search for and add extensions.

Edge incorporates more accessibility integration into the browser before the need for extensions. Edge has a built-in screen reader accessed with a right mouse click or the Windows application menu (Shift+F10). Select Read Aloud (not to be confused with the extension Read Aloud) and the webpage will be read starting from the current focus. When Edge’s Read Aloud is selected, a Play/Pause, Forward, and Rewind control appears at the top of the webpage content window, with Voice Options to the right. The dialog box for Voice Options contains a slider for voice speed selection, and a dropdown to choose and add voices.

 

 

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