After years of waiting, Mozilla Firefox V16.0 offers preliminary VoiceOver support in its official release. As the “preliminary” qualifier suggests, this support is a long way from being ideal, but it does mark a significant step forward for the popular open source browser.
Our initial impressions are that, while VoiceOver accessibility of the application and web content itself is quite good, performance is very poor. VoiceOver often becomes sluggish or unresponsive, and occasionally windows are presented which VoiceOver does not immediately recognize.
While it is unlikely that, in this initial state, VoiceOver users will opt to make FireFox their default browser, this release marks an important step forward for accessibility on OS X, and a significant change for Mozilla, which had initially claimed that it would be unable to make Firefox accessible to VoiceOver users. We look forward to seeing how VoiceOver support progresses in Firefox.