State of the Art Accessibility for Yahoo Mail
By Mike Shebanek, Oath Senior Director of Accessibility
You may have heard that we just launched our new Yahoo Mail desktop experience that makes it even easier to access and organize all of the important information in your Inbox. The new version of desktop Mail has been completely redesigned from the ground up, sits on our latest tech stack, and is fast, reliable, and intuitive to use. It however also takes a huge leap forward for accessibility, with many user interface and assistive technology compatibility improvements.
Yahoo's Accessibility team and the Yahoo Mail team have been closely working together from the beginning of this project to identify and address previous barriers to accessibility and efficiency, and the teams have poured themselves into this new release.
With the new Yahoo Mail experience, NVDA and VoiceOver screen reader users have access to the full desktop Yahoo Mail experience including threaded message viewing, stationery, animated gifs, emoji, and more. The Inbox is also now presented as a table which makes it faster and easier to use and allows you to control what information you hear about each message. For example, screen reader users can find or mark messages as read or unread, delete or star them, and know how many messages are in a thread all from the Inbox without first having to open the message.
In addition to a new beautiful design that reduces visual clutter and improves responsiveness, we've also updated the set of visual themes including a new "dark" theme that provides high contrast using a dark background with bright text. This is helpful for light-sensitive and low-vision users. There's also a new Inbox spacing option that reduces the need to pan around the screen when using high magnification. Of course, Yahoo Mail is also fully navigable using a keyboard alone (i.e. "tab key navigation").
The images below show the default (black on white) Yahoo Mail theme and the new dark high-contrast theme.