[access-uk] Re: Fw: [vicsireland] Digit-Eyes Audio Labeling System Advances Independence For Visually Impaired

That goes a long way in explaining the price, but it doesn't justify the 
whole price.  Surely the likes of NVDA have similar considerations.

Also, are you saying that AT manufacturers aren't making maximum profits; 
charging a price that they know people will pay because they have us over a 
barrel?

It might be banging the same old drum, but it's an issue that needs banging 
on about until something is done or indisputably clarified.

If you, or anyone else, can tell me what profit margin Hentar Joyce and co 
work on, and it's not ridiculous, then I'll put my drum away.

Cheers

Barry




----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Tristram Llewellyn" <tristram.llewellyn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Thursday, June 24, 2010 11:48 AM
Subject: [access-uk] Re: Fw: [vicsireland] Digit-Eyes Audio Labeling System 
Advances Independence For Visually Impaired


I cannot comment on the product named in the subject line but wished to 
respond to the issues of price and development.  The rest of this will have 
me down as some kid of industry apologist but there you go.

The context in which iPhone applications are being developed is very 
different from that in which Windows screen readers were/are being produced 
like JAWS never mind across other product sectors AT related products. 
People may have their issues with JAWS/FS or any other facet of access 
technology but one must not confuse what may be happening and why with 
respect specifically the iPHone and its apps.

When comparing screen readers like JAWS or System Access with iPhone apps 
one should bear in mind the following:
1 This software deals with an entire operating system that at least 
initially and is still in some cases difficult to make accessible because it 
was never designed to be.
2 JAWS and other screen readers on Windows deal with a sometimes uncertain 
and very diverse application landscape with differing standards and 
compliances across applications that are used.
3 There is far greater complexity in the desktop environment than a 
smartphone.
4 Finally most AT companies I can think of sell in volumes of hundreds of 
thousands at their very best and sometimes for hardware items in the tens of 
thousands worldwide.  Apple for its hardware deals in the millions of units. 
The same is true of Microsoft and many of the larger software houses.

Selling software into the iPhone market is a completely different 
proposition:
1 Apple have already written in the access technology.
2 They fully control the platform end to end and provide SDK for it  and 
therefore have been able to establish the rules by which applications that 
go on it play by.

In just those two points a lot has been built upon that maybe did not work 
out.  Had it not been for the work done for Symbian it is doubtful that an 
iPhone could have ever been made or thought of at all.

On the wider point about prices is that since Apple control the platform and 
the standards it has the effect of making the development process far more 
predictable and therefore its cost can be managed and assessed in a way that 
means a product could cost less to develop.  Development cycles are measured 
in a short number of months usually for all but the most ambitious apps. 
Apple further incentivise this by taking care of all the costly 
distribution, accounting and give the developer a certain 70 percent cut in 
the sale which they can more or less guarantee from sales.  Effectively by 
following down the app store route developers have practically outsourced 
everything except writing code and product development tasks.

As for artificially high prices in AT industry as a whole, I wouldn't buy it 
because somebody new or existing suppliers would do everything to try and 
undercut to gain sales and expand their business.   For the most part in the 
past this has not happened, occasionally there are smaller revolutions 
though in technology.  However, the idea or even the sentiment that everyone 
in the AT industry is going to be up against the wall when the revolution 
comes I think it is misguided.  What will happen is things will gradually 
change where it is possible through the technology.  The economics of the 
things are generally much harder and longer term projects.

Regards.

Tristram Llewellyn
Sight and Sound Technology
Technical Support
www.sightandsound.co.uk

Mail:
Tristram: tristram.llewellyn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Technical: Support@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
General - info@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Phone:
Support line: 0845 634 7979

Sight and Sound Technology Limited is a company registered in England and 
Wales, with company number 1408275.

Sight and Sound Technology
Welton House North Wing
Summerhouse Road
Moulton Park
Northampton
NN3 6WD

VAT Number - GB 860 2121 66.

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