Accessibility of Roon app in Windows w/JFW

Hello - I’m blind and am using Jaws for Windows 16.0. I’ve been amazed by the reviews and forum posts, and am eager to see if I can use the Roon software from Jaws. I just started my trial, ran the install, and it’s not looking good from an accessibility standpoint. (I can’t get passed the license agreement screen.) Is anyone using Roon with any screen reader? Thanks very much - Brian.

Roon uses a custom drawing engine for performance and cross platform reasons… our entire user interface is written in OpenGL, which gets us the performance and portability we desire long term. Unfortunately, this means the graphical parts of the application are built like a video game, and less like a normal application.

I fear that JAWS and others are built by hooking into the built-in Windows text areas, and then they won’t work with Roon.


If you have a screen reader that works via real-time OCR techniques, it may work better

Thanks, Danny - Great information. Today’s screen readers do have OCR capability, but it’s more of a model in which the user takes a snapshot of the screen, runs OCR, then reviews the results. It does allow the user to click on things recognized by OCR, but the image is static so things may have changed since the snapshop was taken. But mor importantly, this approach removes all of the contextual information that makes the recognized text useful, such as whether a bit of text is part of a read-only text area, or a list of options, or a label on a button, etc. The OCR method works great as a sort of last resort to use when a user needs to get passed a difficult screen.

But based on your response, I did some looking around the web. I ran across a Google patent that is intended to share OpenGL-based applications in a remote-viewing scenario. It hinted that monitoring OpenGL function calls was possible. That led me to a couple of interesting utilities - GLIntercept and OGLE. I’m wondering if you know anything about these and if they could be useful to screen reader developers trying to make openGL apps accessible. Any thoughts you’d have are appreciated.


OpenGL calls are very low level. There is no way someone looking at OpenGL calls can tell the difference between the letter H and an album cover without looking at the graphical data.

I was hoping there was a tool to do real time OCR on the fly, and not via manual image grabs. Computers are more than fast enough to do that nowadays.

Ok - I was afraid of that.

So let’s leave the Windows screen reader aside for the moment. I’ve been sitting with someone over the past 2 days as they worked with the Roon client app, trying to see if I could get some insight about things the OCR wasn’t showing me, such as the symbols for the play/pause buttons. What I’ve learned is that the client doesn’t use keyboard shortcuts anywhere. For example, it would be helpful if the main menu (not sure if it has a label… I’ll call it the Roon menu) could be opened by hitting ALT-R on the keyboard, followed perhaps by the G key to select the Genres menu item. Also, if the play controls were activated with things like:

Play/pause = CTRL-P
Next Track = CTRL-RightArrow
Previous Track = CTRL-LeftArrow

…and so on. I assume that you can add this sort of functionality irrespective of the use of OpenGL - Is that right?

As you can tell, I’m trying to see if I can use Roon just enough to justify buying it. I’m hoping I can - I learned a few things in the first 30 seconds of installing it, such as that SRV apparently contributed to David Bowie’s Let’s Dance track. Who knew???

On another topic, I know that you’re working on an Android app. I’m wondering if I’d have the same issues there? I currently use TalkBack as a screen reader for my phone, and it works well with UPNP control points like Kinsky and Bubble UPNP.

Thanks again for the informative and quick answers, Danny.


Roon menu > Settings has “Keyboard shortcuts” at the top right of the window.

Spacebar toggles play/pause.

Tab opens the Roon menu, but then you have to use numbers to select, and the numbers are not on the screen…

The help screen doesn’t list anything for next/previous track.

Ctrl-Right and Ctrl-Left control the browser history (back and forward, respectively).

Here is a list of keyboard shortcuts from the FAQ:

Thank you, Kim - Very helpful.

Thanks, Music. I’ll spend more time with the FAQ as well.

@BrianLS: list out the keyboard shortcuts you want here:

We can get them in the next build.

As for Android, it’s built the same way :unamused: The upcoming iOS build as well.

Thanks, Danny - I’ve added a few suggestions on that thread. I may have a few more as I use the client more.

Ouch on the mobile answer. I totally understand your decision to go that route, of course. Is it possible that you could one day open an API to third-party app developers that could add Roon as an integration to a UPNP control point?

I see you guys list DCS and not Boulder as hardware partners. They are both on my short list for a new DAC this year. You probably can’t provide details, but that DCS Rossini looks pretty interesting… I auditioned the Vivaldi earlier this summer and was very impressed. But it’s limited to DSD-64, and I’m looking for at least DSD-128… Enter the Rossini. I’ll be able to hear both the Boulder 2120 and the DCS Rossini at RMAF at the very least. Anyway, these are both interesting devices because they are DAC/Streamers.

So that’s the reason for my interest. I’ll live with the UPNP apps if I have to, but would rather use the great music management features of Roon if I can.

Thanks again -


Brian, I have a customer who is visually impaired and is looking for a way to use Roon and Tidal. Did you have any success with JAWS or indeed VOICEOVER on IOS?


Hi Gavin -
Unfortunately not. No joy on any platform. I’m using an Aurender N10 and am really liking the Aurender app on IOS. The app isn’t perfect wrt accessibility, but it’s pretty good, and the Aurender team responds really quickly to fix any issues I report to them. They support Tidal.


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Thanks for your response. Does navigating Tidal on the Aurender work well? My client tried the Tidal app with JAWS and struggled, I don’t want to suggest something that he won’t be able to use.


Hi Gavin,
The Aurender has its own app called Conductor. It has features similar to other streamer/player apps, including sorting your library by song, artist, album, genre, etc., to find other artists that are similar to a selected artist, and much more. Conductor is quite accessible on iOS - I’m using an iPad Pro. Aurender have integrated Tidal with Conductor so that you can use the same Conductor interface, but the ‘library’ you’re pouring through is Tidal’s library. So while I’ve found the Tidal app itself to just keep getting worse wrt accessibility, the Conductor app provides the access to Tidal’s library that the Tidal app doesn’t. Conductor doesn’t support all of the Tidal app features using a screen reader, but it’s pretty good. The downside, of course, is that you have to buy an Aurender to use it.
Hope that helps -