Android Version Guide
While the experience is largely the same on most Android phones, each new version of Android starting with version 1.6 has added new accessibility features. This is a guide to which features were introduced in each version, which might be helpful in deciding whether to purchase a phone with a particular Android version.
Android 1.6 "Donut"
- First version to support Accessibility. Comes with Pico TTS engine.
- Some talking apps can use alternative speech engines if you install TTS Extended, but Loquendo voices are not compatible.
Android 2.1 "Eclair"
- Some talking apps can use the Loquendo TTS engine.
Android 2.2 "Froyo"
- Fixed bug that could cause an application to suddenly stop talking.
- Support for alternative TTS engines is built-in. All talking apps can use Pico, Espeak, Loquendo, or other speech engines.
- Accessibility Settings adds a new option, Power button ends call, so that you don't need to find an End Call button on the touch screen to hang up.
Android 2.3 "Gingerbread"
- No major changes to Accessibility in this version.
Android 3.1 "Honeycomb"
- Only available on tablet devices.
- Web accessibility can be enabled in Accessibility settings.
Android 4.0 "Ice Cream Sandwich"
- Enable Accessibility on brand-new devices by drawing a rectangle at the initial set-up screen.
- "Explore by touch" feature. Use touch gestures to explore and interact with on-screen content on devices without physical buttons.
- TalkBack includes KickBack and SoundBack functionality.