Netflix is adding audio-description tracks on select titles for subscribers who are blind or have poor vision, staring with original series “Marvel’s Daredevil.”
Audio description provides an additional narration describing events happening on-screen, including physical actions, facial expressions and scene changes.
Pay-TV services including Comcast’s Xfinity TV, DirecTV and Dish Network offer audio description support on compatible programs. The FCC requires major broadcast networks and top cable channels to provide a minimum amount of audio-described programming per quarter.
Netflix said it will audio description to more titles in the next few weeks, including current and prior seasons of “House of Cards,” “Orange Is the New Black,” Tina Fey’s “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “Marco Polo.”
The audio-description track for “Daredevil” is available on all Netflix-supported devices, with the exception of Apple TV, for which Apple is in the process of certifying.
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“Netflix is actively committed to increasing the number of audio-visual translations for movies and shows in our English-language catalogs,” Tracy Wright, director of content operations at Netflix, wrote in a blog post.
The company also is exploring adding audio description in non-English languages in the future. Over time, Netflix expects audio description to be available for major Netflix original series, as well as select other shows and movies. Wright added that the company is working with studios and other content owners to increase the amount of audio description across a range of devices including smart TVs, tablets and smartphones.