Samsung TV behind a remote

A11Y Updates: Samsung

25 Mar 2021

Samsung has been providing various accessibility features within their TVs in years past, but at this year’s First Look TV event and CES (Consumer Electronic Show) they announced even more  updates to further contribute to the accessibility of Samsung products.

All 2021 QLED and Neo QLED TV models will offer users the option to reposition captions on screen, zoom into the sign language interpretation window display, and invert colors within a menu (this can be done without inverting the colors of the video being displayed on screen, only the menu itself will adjust).

In addition to presenting new features which will be offered this year, Samsung has offered some visibility into exciting features to come. They have plans to provide an avatar to guide users through TV functionality using sign language and sign language recognition (for example, the ability to turn on a TV using sign language).

Interestingly, many of Samsung’s accessibility features have been around for some time! Take a look at this timeline of some of Samsung’s advances in accessibility. The years on the timeline represent when the feature was made available in some or all models of Samsung TVs.

Timeline displaying release of Samsung features.
Voice Guide 2014, Learn Remote Control 2015, See Colors 2017, Invert Menu Colors 2018, Sign Language Zoom 2019.

Note: Some sources report that See Colors was available in 2016.

  • Voice Guide allows the TV to read text that is on screen and provide verbal feedback to the user regarding their actions such as adjusting the volume or the channel. Additionally, pitch and tone of the speaking voice can be adjusted. Samsung has stated that they are committed to supporting 28 languages with Voice Guide by 2022.
  • See Colors provides tests to assess the user’s colorblindness then adjusts colors displayed on screen based on those results, allowing users who are color blind to perceive a wider range of colors on screen. 
  • Learn Remote Control forces the TV into a teaching mode where it will indicate the purpose of each button on the remote using audio, allowing users who are blind or visually impaired to learn its functionality and the position of the  buttons .


CNET: Samsung Makes its 2021 TVs More Accessible for People with Vision or Hearing Disabilities

iMore: 2021 Samsung TVs are Now More Accessible for People with Disabilities