Pocketnow Weekly 070: smartphones through the eyes of the blind


Not everyone sees the world in the same way.

Of course that’s plainly obvious if you’ve ever spent time in the dungeons comment sections of the internet, but it’s easy to forget that it’s also true in a literal sense. Not everyone sees or hears the same way you might … and that’s as true for smartphone users as for anyone else. So what kind of considerations go into buying and using today’s mobile technology products when you’re visually impaired? What kind of brand wars exist in the world of the blind? Are we going in the right direction with audio cues and glass screens, or were the days of tactile controls far superior? In the feature segment of today’s show, we’ll have special guest Aaron Linson of BlindPodcaster try to answer some of these smartphone accessibility questions, questions which don’t get asked often enough in our tiny little slice of the journalistic world.

And not to worry, news-hounds: before the feature, we’re running down the mobile tech world’s key events of the past seven days with Chief News Editor Stephen Schenck. So whether you’re here for the news of the week or the first-of-its-kind feature, welcome. Put your boots on the table, crack open a cold one, and kick off an early weekend with episode 070 of the Pocketnow Weekly podcast. Send feedback, questions, and requests to podcast [AT] pocketnow [DOT] com. Follow us on TwitterFacebook, Instagram, and Google Plus to stay apprised of the latest episodes. Tell your friends about the show so we don’t have to do a telethon to stay on the air. Join our forums to offer topic suggestions and more. And thanks for listening!

(Note: Sorry for the high noise floor in the second half of the show, folks – we did the best we could to eliminate it, but the audio gods conspired against us.)


Pocketnow Weekly Episode 070



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Recording Date




Michael Fisher

Stephen Schenck (News)

Brandon Miniman (Feature)

Aaron Linson (Special guest)




Android (00:01:17)

Motorola announces Moto G

LG G Flex rumored for US carriers

Google Glass Explorer Edition signups reopened

Android 4.4 KitKat lands for Nexus 7, Nexus 10

Google+ update targets NFC, photos, location services


iOS (00:18:28)

iPad mini with Retina Display now available

Apple iWatch may launch in two sizes

Apple makes massive investment in manufacturing advancements


Windows Phone (00:25:44)

Lumia 1520 features detailed in AT&T video

Rumors look to first Windows Phone 8.1 handsets

Vine finally launches for Windows Phone


BlackBerry (00:33:05)

Verizon starts exclusive BBZ30 sales this week

BlackBerry’s new CEO wants to keep making phones





Guest Segment (00:38:15)

After a special announcement regarding LSTN headphones and the Starkey Hearing Foundation, we talk with Aaron Linson of BlindPodcaster.com about the challenges facing the visually impaired as they navigate today’s smartphone space. Featuring questions from the Pocketnow team.


Thanks for listening!

Tune in next week for more!


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About The Author
Michael Fisher
Michael Fisher has followed the world of mobile technology for over ten years as hobbyist, retailer, and reviewer. A lengthy stint as a Sprint Nextel employee and a long-time devotion to webOS have cemented his love for the underdog platforms of the world. In addition to serving as Pocketnow's Reviews Editor, Michael is a stage, screen, and voice actor, as well as co-founder of a profitable YouTube-based business. He lives in Boston, MA. Read more about Michael Fisher!