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This resource is in active development as of October 2019.

EPUB 101

  • Does EPUB support page navigation?
There are two dependencies for page navigation to work with EPUBs. The publishers must add the appropriate page information markup, and the reading App must use that markup. Formally, EPUB 3 supports direct page navigation provided the publisher adds the proper markup. If a print version of an EPUB 3 exists, in order to conform to the EPUB Accessibility specification, the publisher must insert a page list in the navigation table of contents and the target in the chapters where the page break is located. The Reading App can then take advantage of this page list by going directly to a page in the title either from the Table of Contents or through a “Go To Page” function.For more information, see the Accessible Publishing Knowledge Base on page navigation at: http://kb.daisy.org/publishing/docs/navigation/pagelist.html
  • Where can I find information about EPUB Readers?
There is a wide range of EPUB reading Apps available on all platforms. Many of the readers are associated with products, such as Apple Books, Google Play, VitalSource etc. Other Reading Apps are designed for general use and have accessibility features, such as Dolphin EasyReader and Voice Dream Reader. These Apps are continuously being evaluated for conformance and accessibility. You can find the latest results at: http://www.inclusivepublishing.org/read
  • Why are publishers using EPUB instead of PDF?
The EPUB Standard evolved from a need to produce digitally published materials that could be used on a wide range of computers, cell phones, tablets, and dedicated devices. The tech companies, organizations in the disability community, people from the education sector, and publishers were the drivers of the development. PDF was already broadly used, but because PDF was developed for faithful printing, it did not support reflow to fit different size screens, and it did not carry publishing semantics, and PDF is largely inaccessible. Everybody wanted a single file format that could be distribute to all outlets and used anywhere. The EPUB Standard is now maintained at the W3C, the same body that maintains HTML. The EPUB 3 Community group is free to join and all are welcome. New features, testing of best practices, and maintenance is conducted there. Visit: https://www.w3.org/community/epub3/
  • Is EPUB accessible to persons with disabilities?
EPUB has been designed to be fully accessible to persons with disabilities. People with disabilities, including people who are blind, were involved from the very beginning to ensure that published digital books and publications would be accessible right out of the box. There are three things that come together: The EPUB itself, a Reading App, and Assistive Technology. Testing is conducted with a wide range of Reading Apps and Assistive Technology, such as JAWS, NVDA, VoiceOver, refreshable braille devices, and screen magnification, and more. Anybody is welcome to join in the testing process, and you can learn more at: http://www.epubtest.org
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