Able Player 4.0: A free, open source accessible media player

Handouts Media

Presented at 2:00pm in Cotton Creek I on Thursday, November 21, 2019.



  • Terrill Thompson, Manager, IT Accessibility Team, University of Washington

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 2-hr
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: Beginner
  • Type of session: General Conference


This session will explore all the features of Able Player 4.0, including support for captions and subtitles, audio description (two ways), chapters, and metadata; plus playlists, YouTube, Vimeo, a WordPress plug-in and a Drupal module.


Able Player is a free, open source, and fully accessible cross-browser HTML5 media player. Version 4.0, released in 2019, adds a variety of new features, including full support for audio and video playlists, support for Vimeo, and improved voicing of audio description (including extended audio description) through the Web Speech API (i.e., synthesized speech available through the web browser).

Able Player is the only media that supports all five kinds of HTML5 track elements (captions, subtitles, descriptions, chapters, and metadata). This session will be a deep-dive into Able Player's many features. We'll look at a variety of demos and study the code that makes them work. We'll also look at the new Able Player WordPress plug-in and Drupal module.


  1. Attendees will learn the HTML code needed to add Able Player to web pages.
  2. Attendees will learn about different ways of delivering audio description, and the benefits of each.
  3. Attendees will learn about the benefits of open source technologies for improving accessibility.

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Uncategorized, Web/Media Access

Speaker Bio(s)

Terrill Thompson

Terrill Thompson is manager of the IT Accessibility Team at the University of Washington.


Able Player PowerPoint slides