Keyboard accessibility of Flash/Flex Form

I have noticed the following after downloading the Flex 3 beta from the Adobe site. I created a simple flex form with some standard UIs like text field, combo box, checkbox, button, etc. Tested the html (swf) in IE7 and I could use the “Tab” key on the keyboard to tab from the browser window into and out of the swf. This is the first time I have been able to do that, at least that is for IE7. Wouldn’t work for FF2. Haven’t tested on Safari yet. 

With forms created with either Flex 2 or Flash CS3 or earlier, I could only tab into the swf. But once inside the swf, the key was trapped and I couldn’t tab out of the swf and back into the browser window again. At least unless a screen reader is also installed on the computer.

I hope this is not an accidental feature that would disappear when Flex 3 finally ships. Need to keep praying.

 Updated: Just did further test. Keyboard tapping in IE7 works with Flex 2 form as well. Not so with FF2. Flash player is version 9,0,47,0.


~ by brianchau on August 1, 2007.

2 Responses to “Keyboard accessibility of Flash/Flex Form”

  1. That was originally a bug in flash player 6 that was later fixed in 7. I remember for one project having to write some code that allowed the user to press the ‘home’ key to jump out of flash and back to the first html element on the page.
    Strange that it’s been a bug in flex all this time.
    Still don’t think flash really makes enough of an effort towards addressing accessibility…

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