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Thread: Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility testing

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Number of posts in this thread: 5 (In chronological order)

From: Are,Susmitha
Date: Tue, Jun 11 2019 2:42PM
Subject: Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility testing
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Hi everyone,

Our company is starting accessibility project to make our website accessible. We’re deciding tools to use.

Other than cost and browser compatibility what are the key differences between NVDA and JAWS?

Should we test in both the screen readers?

Thank you,
Susmitha

From: Steve Green
Date: Tue, Jun 11 2019 3:51PM
Subject: Re: Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility testing
← Previous message | Next message →

Firstly, you need to decide why you want to test with a screen reader. The two main reasons are to assist with a WCAG audit and to understand the user experience i.e. conduct an expert review. They are completely different activities and you may use different screen readers for each.

If you want to use it to help with a WCAG audit, I would recommend NVDA because JAWS uses more heuristics than NVDA. The heuristics provide a better user experience with non-compliant code, but it means that JAWS hides non-compliances that would show up with NVDA. Both products have bugs, but I can't say which is better in that respect. That's why you should always report WCAG non-compliances in terms of the code, not in terms of screen reader behaviour.

Bear in mind that you do not need to use a screen reader in order to do a WCAG audit. It can be useful, but it's by no means essential. If you do use a screen reader for a WCAG audit, you only need to use one version with one browser.

Alternatively, if you want to know about the user experience, use JAWS because it is still the most widely-used screen reader. Better still, use both if you have the time and money, and don't forget Voiceover and Talkback. There are a vast number of permutations of screen reader versions and browsers - far more than anyone ever tests with. Screen reader behaviour changes from version to version far more significantly than browser versions. You will need to decide on a testing policy, such as only testing with the latest version or perhaps the latest and one earlier version (perhaps 2 or 3 versions old).

Perhaps even more important is training. Pay a professional trainer to teach you to use the screen reader properly. Do not teach yourself!!! I frequently see testers and developers (at other companies, not mine!) using screen readers completely wrongly. Also, spend time observing real screen reader users to get an understanding of the strategies they use for navigating websites and individual pages. Learn what they find easy and difficult - it may not be what you expect. You will need to pay people to participate in this, but it's well worth the time and cost.

Steve Green
Managing Director
Test Partners Ltd



-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of Are,Susmitha
Sent: 11 June 2019 21:43
To: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
Subject: [WebAIM] Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility testing

Hi everyone,

Our company is starting accessibility project to make our website accessible. We're deciding tools to use.

Other than cost and browser compatibility what are the key differences between NVDA and JAWS?

Should we test in both the screen readers?

Thank you,
Susmitha

From: Maxability A11Y
Date: Wed, Jun 12 2019 6:38AM
Subject: Re: Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility testing
← Previous message | Next message →

Hi Susmitha,

For accessibility testing on Windows operating system NVDA is no doubt the
best with Firefox. Here is the screen reader vs browser combination
<https://www.maxability.co.in/2017/02/25/screen-reader-and-browser-combination-for-accessibility/>list
in case you need it.
If your primary target is to make sure it is usable by persons with
blindness JAWS is preferred. NVDA is even increasing the user market but
JAWS still is in the first position.

It is better to have someone trained

On Wed, Jun 12, 2019 at 3:22 AM Steve Green < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
wrote:

> Firstly, you need to decide why you want to test with a screen reader. The
> two main reasons are to assist with a WCAG audit and to understand the user
> experience i.e. conduct an expert review. They are completely different
> activities and you may use different screen readers for each.
>
> If you want to use it to help with a WCAG audit, I would recommend NVDA
> because JAWS uses more heuristics than NVDA. The heuristics provide a
> better user experience with non-compliant code, but it means that JAWS
> hides non-compliances that would show up with NVDA. Both products have
> bugs, but I can't say which is better in that respect. That's why you
> should always report WCAG non-compliances in terms of the code, not in
> terms of screen reader behaviour.
>
> Bear in mind that you do not need to use a screen reader in order to do a
> WCAG audit. It can be useful, but it's by no means essential. If you do use
> a screen reader for a WCAG audit, you only need to use one version with one
> browser.
>
> Alternatively, if you want to know about the user experience, use JAWS
> because it is still the most widely-used screen reader. Better still, use
> both if you have the time and money, and don't forget Voiceover and
> Talkback. There are a vast number of permutations of screen reader versions
> and browsers - far more than anyone ever tests with. Screen reader
> behaviour changes from version to version far more significantly than
> browser versions. You will need to decide on a testing policy, such as only
> testing with the latest version or perhaps the latest and one earlier
> version (perhaps 2 or 3 versions old).
>
> Perhaps even more important is training. Pay a professional trainer to
> teach you to use the screen reader properly. Do not teach yourself!!! I
> frequently see testers and developers (at other companies, not mine!) using
> screen readers completely wrongly. Also, spend time observing real screen
> reader users to get an understanding of the strategies they use for
> navigating websites and individual pages. Learn what they find easy and
> difficult - it may not be what you expect. You will need to pay people to
> participate in this, but it's well worth the time and cost.
>
> Steve Green
> Managing Director
> Test Partners Ltd
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of
> Are,Susmitha
> Sent: 11 June 2019 21:43
> To: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
> Subject: [WebAIM] Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility
> testing
>
> Hi everyone,
>
> Our company is starting accessibility project to make our website
> accessible. We're deciding tools to use.
>
> Other than cost and browser compatibility what are the key differences
> between NVDA and JAWS?
>
> Should we test in both the screen readers?
>
> Thank you,
> Susmitha
> > > at http://webaim.org/discussion/archives
> > > > > >

From: mhysnm1964@gmail.com
Date: Wed, Jun 12 2019 6:59AM
Subject: Re: Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility testing
← Previous message | Next message →

Screen reader testing requires training regardless of the product. Most
developers do not understand how a user whom lives and breathes this type of
technology. Thus make unconscious Bias decision on how they think the user
will interact with a widget. I am referring to beyond what is documented.
As each user will use the technology differently based upon their knowledge
and skill level.

1. Using accessibility inspector of a browser is the first step to see what
occurs. If the correct fields are populated, then the screen reader will say
something.
2. Using the OS tool to inspect the accessibility framework will validate
the information is being correctly populated by the browser. On windows you
can use the Inspect tool which is a part of the SDK and can be downloaded.
There are other tools to do this as well.
3. Use real users to test it. This falls mainly in the UX space. But should
be done at the early stages. So issues can be corrected.
4. There is a tool TPG/FS which shows you what Jaws will say. Removes the
need of having Jaws present. I forget the name, thus why I am being vague.

If Jaws or NVDA should be used. I believe both needs to be used. I have
tested the same web page in the same browser and have found different
results using the screen readers. For example, a page I was evaluating. NVDA
did not work in Firefox while Jaws did. Also I have seen situations where
one browser work and another did not work for both screen readers. It
permits you to isolate which is the cause. I have also seen the other way
around. It really comes down to your end-users. If the web page is for
commercial internal usage. Then Jaws might be the better direction. As this
is still the most widely used screen reader in the public and private
sector. Even if NVDA is slowly growing. This applies for Windows.

Apple and Android have made it very easy. You have basically one screen
reader. Be aware, from the Android mailer for TalkBack, the general senses
from this user base is TalkBack and Chrome do not work that well. Apple has
a different story here. I am not an full time user of Android and Talkback,
thus I can only share what I have reviewed.

Sean


From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of
Maxability A11Y
Sent: Wednesday, 12 June 2019 10:39 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility
testing

Hi Susmitha,

For accessibility testing on Windows operating system NVDA is no doubt the
best with Firefox. Here is the screen reader vs browser combination
<https://www.maxability.co.in/2017/02/25/screen-reader-and-browser-combinati
on-for-accessibility/>list
in case you need it.
If your primary target is to make sure it is usable by persons with
blindness JAWS is preferred. NVDA is even increasing the user market but
JAWS still is in the first position.

It is better to have someone trained

On Wed, Jun 12, 2019 at 3:22 AM Steve Green < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
wrote:

> Firstly, you need to decide why you want to test with a screen reader.
> The two main reasons are to assist with a WCAG audit and to understand
> the user experience i.e. conduct an expert review. They are completely
> different activities and you may use different screen readers for each.
>
> If you want to use it to help with a WCAG audit, I would recommend
> NVDA because JAWS uses more heuristics than NVDA. The heuristics
> provide a better user experience with non-compliant code, but it means
> that JAWS hides non-compliances that would show up with NVDA. Both
> products have bugs, but I can't say which is better in that respect.
> That's why you should always report WCAG non-compliances in terms of
> the code, not in terms of screen reader behaviour.
>
> Bear in mind that you do not need to use a screen reader in order to
> do a WCAG audit. It can be useful, but it's by no means essential. If
> you do use a screen reader for a WCAG audit, you only need to use one
> version with one browser.
>
> Alternatively, if you want to know about the user experience, use JAWS
> because it is still the most widely-used screen reader. Better still,
> use both if you have the time and money, and don't forget Voiceover
> and Talkback. There are a vast number of permutations of screen reader
> versions and browsers - far more than anyone ever tests with. Screen
> reader behaviour changes from version to version far more
> significantly than browser versions. You will need to decide on a
> testing policy, such as only testing with the latest version or
> perhaps the latest and one earlier version (perhaps 2 or 3 versions old).
>
> Perhaps even more important is training. Pay a professional trainer to
> teach you to use the screen reader properly. Do not teach yourself!!!
> I frequently see testers and developers (at other companies, not
> mine!) using screen readers completely wrongly. Also, spend time
> observing real screen reader users to get an understanding of the
> strategies they use for navigating websites and individual pages.
> Learn what they find easy and difficult - it may not be what you
> expect. You will need to pay people to participate in this, but it's well
worth the time and cost.
>
> Steve Green
> Managing Director
> Test Partners Ltd
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of
> Are,Susmitha
> Sent: 11 June 2019 21:43
> To: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
> Subject: [WebAIM] Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility
> testing
>
> Hi everyone,
>
> Our company is starting accessibility project to make our website
> accessible. We're deciding tools to use.
>
> Other than cost and browser compatibility what are the key differences
> between NVDA and JAWS?
>
> Should we test in both the screen readers?
>
> Thank you,
> Susmitha
> > > archives at http://webaim.org/discussion/archives
> > > > archives at http://webaim.org/discussion/archives
> >
http://webaim.org/discussion/archives

From: Mohith BP
Date: Mon, Jun 17 2019 12:11AM
Subject: Re: Difference between JAWS and NVDA for accessibility testing
← Previous message | No next message

Hi Susmitha,

Please determine the testing policy it is good to use screen reader
and browser combination such as NVDA with Chrome / Firefox and JAWS
with IE 11.
Please also include VoiceOver on iOS and Talkback on Android as well.

It is good to set the internal testing standards based on the WCAG and
ARIA best practices.

Note: Just testing with screen reader alone will not make the
application accessible as there are different needs for people with
different disabilities so it is good to base your accessibility on
WCAG.

Thanks & Regards,
Mohith B. P.


On 6/12/19, Are,Susmitha < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
> Hi everyone,
>
> Our company is starting accessibility project to make our website
> accessible. We’re deciding tools to use.
>
> Other than cost and browser compatibility what are the key differences
> between NVDA and JAWS?
>
> Should we test in both the screen readers?
>
> Thank you,
> Susmitha
> > > > >