University of Maryland


RadioShack Commits to Accessible Website, Point-of-Sale Equipment

June 13th, 2007

Major electronics retailer RadioShack has agreed to bring its website into compliance with WCAG 1.0, priorities 1 and 2, by the end of 2007. By the end of September 2007, a new point-of-sale payment device with tactile keypads will be installed in every RadioShack store. The Trace Center contributed to making this possible through its leadership in development of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. Trace also provided technical assistance to those working with RadioShack on this initiative based on Trace’s research and development on interface techniques for public terminals.

The new point-of-sale payment device is manufactured by Ingenico, and has tactile keys arranged like a standard telephone keypad which plugs easily into existing point-of-sale payment terminals. These new units will allow RadioShack shoppers who have difficulty reading information on a touch screen to privately and independently enter their PIN, telephone number, and other confidential information.

RadioShack’s website will be brought into compliance with the guidelines issued by the Web Accessibility Initiative of the World Wide Web Consortium. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 1.0) were developed by a working group co-chaired by Trace Center Director Gregg Vanderheiden, and the guidelines were co-edited by Vanderheiden, Trace researcher Wendy Chisholm, and Ian Jacobs of the W3C. Implementation of these guidelines by RadioShack will ensure that their website is accessible to persons with a wide range of disabilities. This will particularly benefit people who use screen reader or magnification technology on their computers, and those who rely on a keyboard instead of a mouse.

RadioShack’s initiative is the result of collaboration with major blindness organizations, including the American Foundation for the Blind, American Council of the Blind, and California Council of the Blind. Attorneys assisting in the structured negotiations process with RadioShack were Lainey Feingold and Linda Dardarian.