Sky Q now gives more control to visually impaired customers

Wednesday 31 March 2021
  • New Voice Guidance feature makes navigation even easier, joining a range of accessibility features
  • Sky’s Group CPO committed to going beyond to make Sky Q even more accessible for all

Sky Q, the award-winning TV box, is introducing Voice Guidance – a new feature that will make the platform more accessible than ever. Rolling out over the next month, Voice Guidance will make navigating the platform’s TV guide, menus, Show Centres, collections, and on-screen messages much easier for those with visual impairments.

David Clarke, Director of Services at the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB), said: “Voice Guidance is an excellent feature that will greatly enhance the accessibility of Sky Q for blind and partially sighted people.”

Kyran O’Mahoney, National Council for the Blind of Ireland (NCBI) Chief Technology Officer said: “Sky’s continued focus on accessibility is massively welcome. The new Voice Guidance feature will make a real difference for users. Being able to access and browse content without the help of others is a huge step forward.”

Working in tandem with Sky Q’s Voice Control and existing accessibility features, Voice Guidance will make Sky Q will even more accessible. To start using it, simply say “Voice Guidance on” or “Voice Guidance Off” into your Sky Q voice remote, or find it in settings. You’ll hear spoken descriptions of the menu you’re currently navigating, a description of the option you’re hovering over or have selected, and instructions for how you can easily get to your favourite shows and movies.

Fraser Stirling, Group Chief Product Officer, Sky, said: “As part of our ongoing commitment to making Sky Q even more accessible, we’re proud to have gone further than just having Voice Guidance for the TV Guide, by adding it to other menus and show centres as well.”

Voice Guidance joins a wide range features on Sky Q that are designed to give visually impaired and hard of hearing customers greater independence, including:

  • High Contrast Mode - highlights all entertainment with Audio Description available,
  • Subtitles - say “Subtitles On/Subtitles Off” into your Sky Q voice remote or find subtitled content in the On Demand, Sky Box Sets and Sky Cinema specific menus, and most recently on 500+ of the most popular kids’ content
  • British Sign Language zone (BSL Zone) – enjoy on demand content and entertainment for those who are hard of hearing. Just say “British Sign Language Zone” into your voice remote to easily see all the content.
  • Accessibility remote – has tactile points, larger graphics, high visibility buttons, shortcuts for subtitles and audio description, as well as an easy grip design – designed to make it easier for those who have limited vision or dexterity.

Alongside the new Voice Guidance feature, Sky Q is also rolling out more improvements to its Voice Control – as Disney+ content will now appear in voice and text searches, making it even easier to navigate and search for your favourite entertainment.

For more information on Sky Q’s accessibility features: www.skyaccessibility.sky. And to find out more about Sky Q and begin your journey from just £25 a month, on an 18-month contract, head to: sky.com/tv.

Notes to Editors:

Oran O’Neill, Sky Q customer speaking about his experience said, “I enjoy watching television, but previously have found it frustrating because I had to rely on sighted help. The addition of Sky’s voice guidance will give me the freedom to search for and select content without assistance, empowering me to be independent in my viewing choices.”

  • These updates will begin to roll out to customers from Wednesday 31st March and will be available to all customers by the end of April.
  • For more information on Sky Q's voice control and new features click here.

About Sky

Sky is Europe’s leading media and entertainment company and is proud to be part of the Comcast group. Across six countries, we connect our 24 million customers to the best entertainment, sports, news and arts including our own award-winning original content. 

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