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How to interact with websites using a mobile screen reader

Modern websites offer a lot of interactivity - long gone are the times of static pages. Even complex widgets can be controlled relatively easy using mobile screen readers. And while there are pretty advanced gestures for some native applications, the interaction with websites fortunately is surprisingly easy.

Important: For this article you need to know how to read websites using a mobile screen reader. If you haven't done so yet, go back and read How to read websites using a mobile screen reader thoroughly before you continue here.

Activating elements

When the screen reader cursor is on an element, double tap to activate it if possible (like links, radiobuttons, checkboxes, and buttons, but also custom widgets like tabs or accordions). By the way: it is not important where exactly you double tap on the screen!

Interacting with elements

On more complex elements, double tapping enters their interaction mode:

  • For text fields and text areas, the on-screen keyboard is displayed.
  • For comboboxes, their options are displayed.

To make life easier: while interacting with any standard HTML control, we advise you to stop the screen reader, and after you have completed your interaction, simply restart it. You do not miss any important screen reader interaction here (as you are solely interacting with the system's standard controls).

For example, when entering a text into a textarea, simply move the screen reader cursor to the textarea, then double click to activate it. Navigating the now displayed on-screen keyboard is pretty long-winded using the screen reader, so simply disable it. Now enter some text as usual, then restart the screen reader and continue with your testing.