Key improvements we are making to our mobile apps to ensure they meet the accessibility requirements of an important customer group within our community.
We recently launched a new mobile app available on both iOS and Android. Following the successful release of the app to market, we discontinued support and access to all previous versions of our apps.
Following the app’s removal, one of our vision-impaired customers informed me directly that the new PTV apps did not offer the same level of accessibility as the discontinued ‘PTV Original’ app.
This discussion identified to me that PTV needed to better focus on incorporating accessibility into our business processes. It has taught us a really important lesson around appropriate testing related to our ongoing development and release of customer information.
As a result, we have now restored our PTV Original app for iOS, to enable the accessibility of public transport information for our vision-impaired customers. We re-named this app ‘PTV ScreenReader’ and it is the same version of the app being used before it was removed.
Our app development team is currently working with members of the accessibility community to ensure the existing apps support screen reading capability and enhance accessibility for all of our customers; which we aim to have done by early 2015. We are confident these will be the most accessible apps we have released to date.
In the interim, ‘PTV ScreenReader’ will be available from the Apple iTunes store until the accessible versions of the PTV app in both iOS and Android are ready to download.
Though this issue was raised through a negative experience by some customers, PTV has used it to take appropriate steps to ensure that it will not happen again.
I would like to apologise on behalf of PTV for this oversight and wish to reassure you that we are actively working across the business on ensuring that we better cater for our customers that have accessibility requirements.
PTV is committed to creating a public transport system that is accessible for all Victorians, as detailed in our Accessible Public Transport in Victoria Action Plan 2013-2017: PTV Implementation Plan. As part of this, the PTV website will be compliant to the WCAG2.0 AA standard by 31 December 2014, and we are working with our transport operators to ensure more announcements at stations and on trains, trams and buses.
Significant accessibility improvements are occurring across the network. This includes major station redevelopments at Springvale, Mitcham and Footscray, raised tram and train boarding platforms, the installation of tactile ground surface indicators across the network, an increase in accessible car parking spaces and improvements to toilets.
I welcome any feedback you or your members may have in regards to this and request that you extend this information to your networks.
Chief Executive Officer
Public Transport Victoria
Chief Executive Officer
Level 10, 750 Collins Street
Docklands Victoria 3008 Australia
PO Box 4724 Melbourne Victoria 3001
Telephone +61 3 9027 4127
Mobile: +61 407 502 357
For more information visit www.ptv.vic.gov.au
or call 1800 800 007 (6am – midnigh