EA’s Accessibility First Patent Pledge hopes to see developers share accessibility innovations

Publisher shares five accessibility solutions with developers

Electronic Arts has announced a new initiative to work with studios to develop and share technology and in-game features that will aid and improve accessibility in gaming. The publisher announced the founding of the Accessibility First Patent Pledge this week, kicking off the project by dropping the patent on five of the company’s own innovations — now freely available to any game developer who wishes to utilize them.

Speaking with GamesIndustry.biz, EA’s executive vice-president of Positive Play, Chris Bruzzo, spoke of the team’s hopes that a collective of developers from every aspect of the industry will join the movement and release their own innovations and inventions — making it easier for developers to integrate functions and features to help players who may find barriers in gaming due to disabilities or medical issues.

“We want to encourage this, we want to be bringing others along,” said Bruzzo of the Patent Pledge. “It’s like ‘Here’s some technology that we’ve invented, and has value in the world — what have you got?’ Let’s contribute and license these innovations to each other to the greater good of players everywhere.”

EA’s five contributions to the pledge are described as follows:

  • Contextually Aware Communications Systems in Video Games. (This is the technology used to build Apex Legends‘ acclaimed “Ping” system.)
  • Systems and Methods for Automated Image Processing for Images with Similar Luminosities. (For various stages of color vision deficiencies.)
  • Contrast Ratio Detection and Rendering System. (A self-adjusting brightness and contrast mechanic.)
  • Personalized Real-Time Audio Generation Based on User Physiological Response. (This patent covers technology that will allow for personalized music adaptive to a user’s hearing issues. This tech is yet to be fully developed.)

Additionally, EA has released the source code for an alternate program, described as a “Tunable Colorblindess Solution“, that aids with the radiance of color, brightness, and contrast in gaming. The source code is readily available on GitHub.

You can check out Bruzzo’s full comments regarding the Accessibility First Patent Pledge over at GamesIndustry.biz.

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Chris Moyse
Senior Editor - Chris has been playing video games since the 1980s and writing about them since the 1880s. Graduated from Galaxy High with honors. Twitter: @ChrisxMoyse
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