Monday, July 4, 2022
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Microsoft Announces Adaptive Accessories For People With Disabilities

In an effort to make PC tech more inclusive, Microsoft has announced a specialized line of customizable accessories for people with disabilities.

The Microsoft Inclusive Tech Lab designed its Adaptive Accessories product line alongside the disability community to let folks who might struggle with a traditional mouse-and-keyboard setup customize their accessories for maximum productivity. “These adaptive accessories can perform a variety of functions, thereby alleviating a pain point for those who find it challenging to get the most out of their PC,” said Microsoft director of accessibility David Dame in the announcement.

First up is the Adaptive Mouse, which includes a square-shaped core that you can use as is or customize with an included tail and thumb support that you can switch to either side. You can choose from a variety of pre-designed mouse tails or 3D-print your own if you have more specific needs.

Then there’s the Adaptive Hub, which essentially lets you configure a personalized keyboard setup. The wireless hub can be paired with up to four Adaptive Buttons, which you can top with a d-pad, joystick, or dual button. The buttons can be individually programmed to accomplish both simple and complex tasks, and as with the mouse, they’re compatible with 3D printed toppers to suit individual needs and preferences. Furthermore, the hub works with standard 3.5mm assistive tech switches and lets you create up to three distinct profiles to use with different devices.

In terms of inclusivity in gaming and PC tech, Microsoft really does seem to be leading the charge with this latest line of accessible accessories. While the Xbox Adaptive Controller is a wonderful tool for gamers with disabilities, it’s good to see the same accessibility come to PCs as a more general application.

The Microsoft Adaptive Accessories line is due to launch Fall 2022.

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