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Enable Chrome Accessibility Experiment

Just like any good element inspector helps you debug styles, accessibility inspection in the browser can help you debug HTML and ARIA exposed for assistive technologies such as screen readers. There's a similar tool in Safari (and reportedly one in Edge) but I like the Chrome one best.

As an internal Chrome experiment, this tool differs from the Accessibility Developer Tools extension in that it has privileged Accessibility API access and reports more information as a result. You can still use the audit feature in the Chrome Accessibility Developer Tools, or you could use the aXe Chrome extension. :)

To enable the accessibility inspector in Chrome stable:

  1. Go to chrome://flags/#enable-devtools-experiments to enable Devtools experiments Chrome flags with Developer Tools Experiments enabled
  2. Open developer tools, go to Settings (Devtools menu or Chrome customization menu) Chrome devtools settings
  3. In Settings, go to Experiments and enable "Accessibility Inspection" Settings Experiments
  4. Restart developer tools.
  5. In the element inspector, a new "Accessibility" tab has been added to "Styles". Use it to inspect accessibility nodes to see an element's computed name, role, etc. Accessibility inspection of Soundcloud search field

this tool differs from the Accessibility Developer Tools extension in that it has privileged Accessibility API access and reports more information as a result

I was just about to ask this.

Thanks for this 👍

Many developers including myself have long coded without accessibility in mind. thank you for sharing, this is a great way to stay on top of it so it's not forgotten!

jpls93 commented Mar 27, 2017

@marcysutton Thank you for sharing this. By the way, you may also directly link to chrome://flags/#enable-devtools-experiments instead of just chrome://flags to more easily find the settings.

Also, in Step 3, for others who would initially do it the way I did. Instead of opening Google Chrome's settings, open the settings inside the developer tools accessed by pressingF12 F1.

Best regards!

selfthinker commented Nov 20, 2017

I needed to restart Chrome after the first step (enabling DevTools experiments). Or else the "Experiments" tab was missing from the settings, so I couldn't do step 3 without restarting.

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