Test accessibility with VoiceOver

Restriction: The new VoiceOver testing functionality is initially offered as a Technology Preview feature. Technology Preview features are features that are rolled out early for a trial period but that may not be functionally complete. These features are provided to the customer to solicit interest and feedback, with the goal of full support in future releases. Customers are encouraged to provide feedback and functionality suggestions for Technology Preview features before they become fully supported. When full support becomes available, these features may be offered under a separate license.

These days, every app needs to be usable by as many people as possible. This is not only fair and the right thing to do, it is also mandated by various regulations around the world, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in the US, the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 in the UK, and the Accessible Canada Act (ACA) in Canada. For guidelines on making content on the web more accessible, you can also refer to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), an international standard.

To assist you with testing and improving the accessibility of your applications, Perfecto provides the option to enable VoiceOver on iOS devices during manual testing. VoiceOver is Apple's mobile screen reader that is based on gestures, making it possible to use a mobile device even if you are visually impaired. VoiceOver provides audible descriptions of the device screen to ensure that users with vision impairment can understand what is presented on the screen. Gestures allow a user to navigate and interact with screen elements. By letting you hear the VoiceOver audio and use VoiceOver commands, Perfecto helps you ensure that your application's UI elements are correct and identify potential usability issues for VoiceOver users.


VoiceOver testing requires the following:

  • A Perfecto Enterprise cloud configured with Appium 1.22.3

  • iOS devices running iOS 15 or later

Known issue

Due to an Apple bug, moving between objects on the SpringBoard (the Home screen) does not work properly on some iOS devices. This issue seems to be limited to the Calendar widget.

Perform accessibility testing with VoiceOver

Watch this short video to see how VoiceOver testing works. Detailed steps follow.

To perform VoiceOver testing:

  1. On the device toolbar, click the accessibility icon .

  2. In the Accessibility form, turn on Accessibility mode.

    This may take a few seconds. Do not interact with the open device during this time. When setup is complete, the word 'Available' will sound and the icon background on the toolbar changes to green .

  3. On the open device, start the application you want to test.

  4. In the Accessibility form:

    • Use the Next , Previous , and First options to test VoiceOver for all elements on the screen. These options correspond to the following user gestures on the device: swipe right, swipe left, and four-finger tap at the top of the screen

      Alternatively, you can use the following keyboard shortcuts: Shift+Right arrow key, Shift+Left arrow key, and Shift+Up arrow key

      Each time you move to a new element, VoiceOver reads the related description.

    • Use the Tap option to click an item, for example to open an app. This option corresponds to the following user gestures on the device: double-tap or split-tap (touching and holding an item with one finger while tapping the screen with another finger)

      Alternatively, you can use the following keyboard shortcut: Shift+Spacebar

  5. (Optional) When done, turn Accessibility mode off. This is not required. Accessibility mode is automatically turned off when the device is released.