Digi improves website and app accessibility to better serve visually impaired community

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In conjunction with the International Day of Persons with Disability 2020, Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd (Digi) today introduced its recently enhanced website (www.digi.com.my) and MyDigi app, that now comes with improved accessibility features to better serve the visually impaired community in Malaysia. To complement improvements to these digital touchpoints, the company also released an Inclusive Digital Touchpoints Playbook to inspire other like-minded organisations to similarly build accessible digital platforms to benefit more persons with disabilities (PWDs) across the country. These efforts form part of Digi’s Yellow Heart commitment to operate a responsible, inclusive business focused on making the internet equally accessible for all.

Inclusive digital touchpoints: a work in progress to provide equal accessibility for disabled users

The accessibility upgrades made to the company’s digital touchpoints were guided by international standards for accessibility, and addresses four challenges associated to visual impairment, which are blindness, low vision, colour blindness and dyslexia. These improvements are being built into Digi’s current web and app design, functionality, content and technology platforms to ensure compatibility with digital applications commonly used by PWDs such as screen readers, audio and video transcribers. The company said that the upgrades will be continuous going forward, as more considerations to improve accessibility features are needed to accommodate people with different types of disabilities.  

Speaking at the virtual launch event, Digi’s Head of Sustainability, Philip Ling said, “The world runs on the Internet, a fact that has become even more pronounced during this pandemic. This season has similarly highlighted the disparity between those who have and are less likely to have easy access to online experiences. We strongly believe that inclusion is a basic human right and are therefore taking action to lower the barriers of access to our digital touchpoints. This has the potential to empower fellow Malaysians with impairments with a sense of independence to run their own errands; and to connect them to more socio-economic opportunities,” Philip added.

Inclusive Digital Touchpoints Playbook: Driving faster adoption to scale accessibility nationwide

Digi also shared today that it teamed up with local social enterprises, Dialogue in The Dark (DID) and the Make It Right Movement (MIRM), organisations who work closely with the visually impaired communities, to release the Inclusive Digital Touchpoints Playbook.

The Playbook shares valuable insights from Digi’s research and direct feedback from the PWD community on considerations for building accessible digital touchpoints. Some of these practical inputs include how to assess current website friendliness for disabled users, tools to validate if implemented feature upgrades are effective, and examples of international best practices for accessible websites and apps.

The company hopes that sharing the Playbook will drive faster adoption of inclusive technologies among other organisations to benefit more people with disabilities in a shorter timeframe, “We have always viewed partnerships as the best way for us to scale positive changes to Malaysian communities in an impactful way. By going directly to the source in teaming up with DID and MIRM, we aim to help other organisations get the right start to building accessible digital touchpoints. By doing so, we can collectively raise the standards and normalise the way companies include and serve PWD communities across the country,” added Philip.  

Stevens Chan, Founder of Dialogue in the Dark said, “Accessibility is a societal responsibility. Initiatives such as what Digi is doing in making digital touchpoints more inclusive will increase people’s awareness on what the visually impaired community experiences. It also creates a platform for them to receive equal access and opportunities like the rest of Malaysians do. As a community, we should adopt a more empathetic approach because it is through understanding that we can truly make a difference.”

Brian Lariche, Chief Executive Officer of Make it Right Movement added, “Inclusive digital touchpoints can provide the persons with disabilities (PWDs) the independence and tools to perform simple everyday tasks that the rest of us take for granted. Moving forward, we need to continue to exercise empathy and patience in incorporating PWDs into the workforce and create more job opportunities which are friendly towards them, thus allowing them to play their role in contributing to growth in the economic sector.”

Prior to this, Digi had rolled out several other initiatives as part of its ongoing commitment to amplify accessibility for underserved communities, including Yellow Heart Privileges, which provides an RM10 monthly lifetime rebate for connectivity plans catered to the disabled community and senior citizens, and accessibility upgrades in Digi Stores such as wheelchair ramps, and dedicated express lanes for persons with disabilities, senior citizens and expectant mothers. For more on Digi’s Inclusive Digital Touchpoints Playbook, visit digi.my/inclusivebusiness.

Reon

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