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Apple adds Siri Shortcuts action for auto-answer calls in iOS 16.4 beta

Last week Apple released the latest beta version of its iPhone operating system iOS 16.4 to developers and public beta testers. iOS 16.4 beta is full of new features. These include new emoji, enhanced support for 5G, the ability to enable push notifications for web apps, and the return of the new architecture for the Home app. Apple has also added some new Shortcuts actions to iOS 16.4 beta one of which will be extremely helpful for accessibility and those of us with upper limb disabilities. Last October, in a interview with 9to5 Mac I called for Apple to introduce a Shortcuts action to control the auto-answer calls feature on the iPhone and Apple Watch, and I am thrilled to report with the release of iOS 16.4 beta the company has clearly listened. Background When it was first released one...

Meta Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses to offer hands-free calling and texting

Meta, formerly known as Facebook, announced in a blog post this week that it will soon be rolling out a new feature on its Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses that will allow users to make hands-free phone calls using their phone number. Additionally, the glasses will be equipped with the ability to read incoming text messages out loud, providing an even more convenient way for users to stay connected while on the go. Launched in 2021, and combining fashion and technology, Ray-Ban Stories are the first wearable product from a partnership between Meta and EssilorLuxottica the company behind the Ray-Ban sunglasses brand. Ray-Ban Stories look similar to a standard pair of Ray-Ban glasses yet incorporate technologies like cameras, audio, touch controls, and microphones which let you capture video an...

Apple Accessibility Preview: the unanswered questions

Ahead of its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on the 6th of June Apple has previewed updated accessibility features coming to its platforms later this year. Among the software updates with the potential to change lives are LiDAR-powered Door Detection for blind or visually impaired users, Live Captions for deaf people or those with hearing loss, and features which give those with physical and motor disabilities the ability to control the Apple Watch via an iPhone. It is the second year in a row Apple has previewed accessibility updates ahead of its annual cycle of more general software updates, which this year will be unveiled at WWDC next week. This is what Apple has announced, with particular interest to disabled people with physical and motor impairments, as well as some qu...

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