NASHVILLE, TN ĖVital Source Technologies, Inc., Ingram Content Group's leading e-textbook solution, showcased new features to its comprehensive accessibility support for its VitalSource Bookshelf platform at the National Federation of the Blind National Convention, July 1-6, in Orlando, FL.
"As a result of rigorous, ongoing accessibility testing of the various Bookshelf platforms, Tech For All, Inc. can attest that a real asset of the Vital Source approach is its strong commitment to deliver an accessible, rich eBook reading experience which students with disabilities, like their peers, can access from home, in the classroom, and in a mobile environment," said Rick Bowes, Executive Consultant for Tech For All, Inc., a leading accessibility and universal design consulting firm.
Vital Source Technologies continues to work to support industry standards for accessibility by conducting conformance testing on all Bookshelf platforms Ė offline on Windows and Macs; online on Windows and Macs using standard browsers (e.g., Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari); and on mobile devices for iOS and Android. All Bookshelf platforms are evaluated using industry-leading screen reading programs available for the platform including JAWS and NVDA for Windows, VoiceOver for Mac and IOS, and TalkBack for Android. To ensure a comprehensive reading experience, all Bookshelf platforms have been evaluated using EPUB and enhanced PDF books.
"Through VitalSource Bookshelf, we strive to provide the right accessibility features in e-textbooks that will enable people of all abilities to get the most out of an e-textbook experience and realize its full potential," said Rick Johnson, Vice President Product and Sales Engineering, Vital Source Technologies, Inc. "We've been doing this for more than a decade, and we will continue to innovate and introduce new ways to enhance e-textbook accessibility."
Because accessibility is a fundamental part of teaching and learning, Vital Source regularly collaborates with independent consultants and industry experts including the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), American Foundation for the Blind (AFB), Tech For All, JISC, and others, to ensure the platform is tested in conformance with the section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.
Along with the client updates being released, Vital Source will provide an updated and independently-reviewed Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) statement for each platform. The VPAT is an industry standard template used by suppliers to systematically document a product's conformance with the Section 508 accessibility standards. The Android, iOS, Browser, Macintosh, and Windows VPAT's are available for download from www.vitalsource.com/508.
The VitalSource Bookshelf platform is the most used e-textbook delivery platform in higher education. Vital Source Technologies has more than 500,000 titles available in distribution encompassing content from more than 750 educational publishers. Content is available to VitalSource Bookshelf users, including those living with disabilities anytime, anywhere, and on a variety of operating systems and devices. For more information about Vital Source Technologies, visit www.vitalsource.com.
Ingram Content Group Inc. is a subsidiary of Nashville-based Ingram Industries Inc. The company got its start in 1964 as a textbook depository and has since grown and transformed into a comprehensive publishing industry services company that offers numerous solutions, including physical book distribution, print-on-demand and digital services. Committed to the success of its partners, Ingram works closely with publishers, retailers, libraries and schools around the world to provide them with the right products and services to help them succeed in the dynamic and increasingly complex world of content publishing. Ingram's operating units are Ingram Book Company, Lightning Source Inc., Vital Source Technologies, Inc., Ingram Periodicals Inc., Ingram International Inc., Ingram Library Services Inc., Spring Arbor Distributors Inc., Ingram Publisher Services Inc., Tennessee Book Company LLC, Coutts Information Services, and ICG Ventures Inc. Learn more about Ingram Content Group at www.ingramcontent.com.
About Tech For All
Tech For All is a leading independent accessibility consulting firm providing expert product evaluations for producers and purchasers of digital products, services and websites. For more information, visit www.TFAConsulting.com.