Re: Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Im...

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Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Imparied users

I use Skype to talk & video with my 80+ year old parents. Their vision, hand/eye coordination, and overall computer saavy is nowhere near as good as the 20-something programmers who write Skype. Here are some features that would help everyone:

 

- Restore color to the Skype status icon in the task bar. It used to change between green, yellow, or red making it much easier to see and find. The black icons are useless.

 

- Get rid of the dissappearing function icons. They are only visible on mouse-over, making them very difficult to find or to describe where the are when providing tech support. Add one for screen-share so that I can see my parent's screen for tech support purposes.

 

- Add text or pop-up text to the function icons. Not all functions are immediately obvious and less-so to those with poor eyesight.

 

- Get rid of the floating keypad and make it part of the fixed window interface. When calling any number that requires additional digit entry (nearly everything), it makes it difficult to do this quickly. Now imagine doing this when you are 80, visually impaired, and have early stage Parkinson's.

 

- Map the = key to # in the keypad so that we don't have to use <shift><3> to enter a hashtag. (Many number pads on real keyboards have a convenient = but not a #.)

 

Computers can be incredibly liberating technology for those with special needs. They should not be the exclusive domain of those who can read 8 point font and have fast fingers.

 

Thanks.

MS_Durango
Novel Adventurer
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Registered: 11-10-2013
Message 1 of 7 (452 Views)

Re: Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Imparied users

I'm not a developer, but I feel your pain.  

 

My parents are not quite that old but suffer from some visual and physical disabilites.  Just out of curiosity have you perhaps looked into Logitech's Cam HD for TV for your folks?

 

 

sgallant04
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Registered: 11-08-2013
Message 2 of 7 (440 Views)

Re: Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Imparied users

[ Edited ]

Hi - please see some responses inline and thank you for your feedback!

Miru

 


MS_Durango wrote:

I use Skype to talk & video with my 80+ year old parents. Their vision, hand/eye coordination, and overall computer saavy is nowhere near as good as the 20-something programmers who write Skype. Here are some features that would help everyone:

 

- Restore color to the Skype status icon in the task bar. It used to change between green, yellow, or red making it much easier to see and find. The black icons are useless.

 

Are you still seeing this with the latest builds?  If so can you include a screenshot

 

- Get rid of the dissappearing function icons. They are only visible on mouse-over, making them very difficult to find or to describe where the are when providing tech support. Add one for screen-share so that I can see my parent's screen for tech support purposes.

 

This has been submitted to the right team.

 

- Add text or pop-up text to the function icons. Not all functions are immediately obvious and less-so to those with poor eyesight.

 

Currently we do have a pop-up with text, can you let me know if this is not showing up for you?

 

- Get rid of the floating keypad and make it part of the fixed window interface. When calling any number that requires additional digit entry (nearly everything), it makes it difficult to do this quickly. Now imagine doing this when you are 80, visually impaired, and have early stage Parkinson's.

 

This has been submitted to the right team.

 

- Map the = key to # in the keypad so that we don't have to use <shift><3> to enter a hashtag. (Many number pads on real keyboards have a convenient = but not a #.)

 

This has been submitted to the right team.

 

Computers can be incredibly liberating technology for those with special needs. They should not be the exclusive domain of those who can read 8 point font and have fast fingers.

 

Thanks.




Mirunan
Staff
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Registered: 27-09-2011
Message 3 of 7 (396 Views)

Re: Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Imparied users

My grandma is 91 years old andwe used to skype every day. In the past year her eyes have gotten so bad she has a very hard time seeing the tiny icons. Now we talk on the phone and I miss being able to see her.

I know for regular users all the features are great. Would it be possible to make a skype version just for seniors?

Large icons and names
When you are online, you are online (the do not disturb, etc is unnecessary)
When you answer a call it is automatically with video (the way it used to be)
Easy IM that does not disappear but is in a separate box as before

Please, all the extra buttons just make it so difficult, and everything is so, so tiny. I can only come to visit her twice a year (10 days American vacation time... Why did I leave behind my 28 days in Germany?!) and being able to skype with her is so precious to us.

Thank you.
Posted from Apple iPad
Squyks
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Registered: 02-02-2014
Message 4 of 7 (222 Views)

Re: Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Imparied users

[ Edited ]

You might experiment with various options in the Mac's System Preferences' Accessibility panel, where the display can be configured to make it easier for the visually impaired. 

--
Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem.
mkichaa
Community Ambassador
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Registered: 27-06-2011
Message 5 of 7 (215 Views)

Re: Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Imparied users

Thanks for considering my suggestions. With respect to the Skype icon in the task bar, this is what it looks like. I haven't seen it change colors since version 4.
MS_Durango
Novel Adventurer
Kudos: 3
Posts: 2
Registered: 11-10-2013
Message 6 of 7 (199 Views)

Re: Feature Request(s) - for Seniors & Visually Imparied users

I have not! Does this have its own system, or does it use skype? Not sure if I could get my whole family to switch systems as we are all so used to skype now... But thanks for the suggestion, I'll look into it!

 

Our latest debacle was that my grandma somehow switched her status from "online" to "offline" ... over the phone I talked her through changing it again, but that icon is TINY. I just told her to click on the blob that is next to her name. So then it was "do not disturb," which let her call us, but it would not ring out loud when we called her! Once when we finally managed to skype with video (also not so easy, as it is apparently more intuitive to pick up the call without video now, argh) I had her hold the camera in one hand so I could see what she was seeing, and together we managed for her switch it to "online" again.

 

SO MUCH MORE DIFFICULT THAN NECESSARY. With all the information about how populations are aging, why aren't the developers making allowances for this? Is it really so difficult to have a separate skype program for seniors? You'd never have to update it, because change = confusion.

 

I am an engineer, too, so I know the saying "If it isn't broken, it doesn't have enough features yet" ...

Squyks
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Registered: 02-02-2014
Message 7 of 7 (121 Views)
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