techUK Respond to Ofcom Consultation on EPG Accessibility

This consultation seeks to implement changes to EPG displays to benefit users with visual impairments. Some of the proposed changes are available on selected devices today but are not standardised across all products. These changes will apply to EPGs that display Free-to-Air Public Service Broadcaster content, so will apply across DTT, Satellite and IP.

The consultation refers to the previous consultation and changes proposed in this second consultation as a result of feedback from the previous consultation. In summary some of the main points are:

1) Previously the proposed changes were focused only on multi-function receivers (e.g. PVRs), now they will apply to all devices that display EPGs (so TVs are now in scope).
2) Previously it was proposed that ‘best endeavours’ are required to meet the changes, now it is proposed that ‘reasonable endeavours, to secure so far as practical’ are required. 
3) Changes will come into force when the final statement is published, so this suggests that manufacturers will be required to review/ act quickly on new devices, possibly in 2018.
4) The changes required include:
a. Text to Speech rendering.
b. Programme highlighting where audio description is provided.
c. EPG magnification options.
d. Switching between default and high contrast displays.

The change recommendations are designed to help visually impaired viewers use EPG’s with greater ease and be able to identify which programmes contain content support services that help visually impaired viewers.

techUK have responded to this consultation on behalf of our device manufacturing members. A copy of our response can be downloaded by members below.

Enquries should be directed to:

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