According to the information provided by Microsoft, more than half of the images on the internet do not contain alternative text. Alternative texts, also known as image tags, are of great importance for those who have vision problems to understand what is shown in the image with the help of screen readers. Microsoft Edge is taking action to close the lack of alt text in images in the internet browser.
Existing screen readers refer to images without alt text as "unlabeled graphics". With the update made in Edge, the screen reader will be able to automatically create tags for images that do not have alternative text.
On Microsoft's blog, there is a blog post signed by Travis Leithead on the subject: "When the screen reader finds an untagged image, that image is automatically identified with words by the machine learning algorithm and a tag is created. Algorithms are not perfect yet, and the quality of definitions can vary. But for screen reader users, it's better to be able to hear a description than to be completely ignorant of the context.”
Microsoft Edge users will first be able to take advantage of this new feature in Windows, Mac and Linux applications. The feature is not yet available for iOS and Android.