Georgia Tech Research Institute
Accessibility Assistant

Accessibility Assistant


Control Panel Buttons (7 of 11)

Issue: Buttons requiring very little force to activate can increase the number of accidental activations.

A user is shown using a numeric keypad to enter a ZIP code.  Because the button activation force is low, the user accidentally activated the button multiple times, typing '33333'.

Buttons that are activated with very light forces are more frequently accidentally activated. This causes problems for users who are blind or who have low vision, because they may rely on touch to locate buttons, and may accidentally activate buttons if the activation force is too low. Users lacking fine motor control may touch buttons unintentionally, and accidentally activate them if the activation force is too low.

Populations Impacted: Users who are blind; users with low vision; users with upper mobility impairments.

Potential Solution:
  • Buttons should require a sufficient activation force to reduce the number of accidental activations. Button activation forces in the range of 0.22 to 1.8 pounds are recommended (Bullinger, Kern, and Muntzinger, 1988).

Applicable Guidelines:
Section 508 - 1194.31(a), 1194.31(f)
Section 255 - 1193.41(a)(3)(e), 1193.41(e)(2)(e)
Mercinelli - 2.4