Towards Accessibility and Inclusion of Native Mobile Applications Available for Ecuador in Google Play Store
Patricia Acosta-Vargas, Sebastian Zarate-Estrella, Franccesca Mantilla-Vaca, Sylvia Novillo-Villegas, Christian Chimbo, Sergio Luján-Mora
Sustainability, 13(20), p. 1-13, 2021. ISSN: 2071-1050. https://doi.org/10.3390/su132011237
(SUSTAIN'21d) Revista / Journal
This article aims to evaluate the level of compliance with the accessibility requirements of the most popular native Android mobile applications, for which a sample of 50 Google Play Store applications available in Ecuador was taken. A five-phase method using the Accessibility Scanner tool was used to evaluate the apps. The results revealed that 47.5% are related to problems with tactile orientation, followed by the labeling of elements with 28.2%, and text contrast with 9.2%. The highest number of barriers found in the evaluation of mobile applications corresponds to the principle of operability with 53.9%. This study reveals that, although social networks are widely used, they have 28.7% of accessibility problems. Basing accessibility analysis exclusively on an automatic tool is very limited since it neither detects all errors nor are the errors they detect accurate. However, we suggest complementing the automatic review evaluations with a manual method based on heuristics to ensure an adequate level of accessibility in mobile apps. In addition, we recommend using this study as a starting point to create a software tool using WCAG 2.1 based on artificial intelligence algorithms to help developers evaluate accessibility in mobile apps.