NV Access will be at the 39th Annual CSUN Assistive Technology Conference. We are presenting a session and would love to have you there:

  • Date: Thursday 21st March 2024
  • Time: 2:20 PM (Pacific Daylight Time – note the change to summer time from 10th March!)
  • Location: Grand GH

Slide reading NVDA 2024: New and upcoming features, presented by NV Access.  With details Thursday 21st March, 2:20pm at Orange Country 1-2 with CSUN logo in corner and shades of purple, turquoise and orange in corners.

If you’re coming here after watching the session, then firstly, thanks for coming! It was great to see you! If you were hoping to be there and couldn’t, or if you were there and didn’t get a chance to catch up with us, please E-Mail us with any questions or comments.

This page has all the information from the presentation. There is extra detail on some points and links to more information and resources.

Table of Contents

  1. Intro: The team
  2. About NV Access
  3. About NVDA
  4. Advantages of NVDA
  5. Synthesizer options
  6. What’s new?
  7. Other recent updates
  8. Actions from feedback
  9. Sean: Community fixes in recent & upcoming releases
  10. Dr Gerald Hartig, intro and roadmap
  11. James Boreham: NV Access and NVDA sustainability
  12. The Quick Start Guide
  13. Training material
  14. The NVDA Productivity Bundle
  15. (not just) Telephone support
  16. NVDA Expert Certification
  17. Information for corporate and government users
  18. Open Source software
  19. Using NVDA to test for accessibility
  20. Join the community
  21. Contacting NV Access


The Presenters

Presenting at CSUN 2023 are:

  • Mick Curran (Executive Director & Founder)
  • Dr Gerald Hartig (Chief Technology Officer)
  • James Boreham (General Manager)
  • Sean Budd (Software Engineer)
  • Quentin Christensen (Training & Support Manager)
  • Sascha Cowley (Software Engineer) – not with us at CSUN

About NV Access

Formed in 2007 by blind friends Mick & Jamie. Our goal is to support the development and longevity of the NVDA screen reader. NV Access champions a thriving ecosystem around NVDA. This includes: Training material, support, certification, add-ons, community. We advocate for access to technology for all, regardless of language, location or financial situation.

NV Access is a registered charity, overseen by a board of directors. Donations in Australia over $2 are tax deductible. You can find out more about our orgnisation and structure from our About NV Access page.

On the same page, you can also find a Description of the NV Access logo.

Our website is nvaccess.org.

The NV Access logo.  Broadly be described as “sun-shaped”, using the colours purple, turquoise and orange.  Text

Our founders, Mick and Jamie were featured on the national TV Show, Australian Story in 2023. You can view Australian Story with Audio Description on YouTube.


NVDA is a free and open source screen reader. It allows the user to “read the screen” via synthetic speech or Braille output via a refreshable Braille display.

NVDA stands for Non-Visual Desktop Access.

NVDA is Written by users, for users.

We have over 250,000 Users in more than 175 countries & 55 languages.

We have a page about NVDA which also includes a description of the NVDA logo

Close-up photograph of NVDA logo in notification area.

Close-up photograph of NVDA logo in notification area.

We have a short demonstration video of NVDA at: What is NVDA YouTube video

Advantages of NVDA

Synthesizer options

NVDA uses Windows OneCore by default. Windows OneCore is built into Windows 10 and 11 and is reasonably natural sounding. NVDA comes bundled with eSpeak-NG, a very responsive voice. People either love it, or find it sounds too “robotic”.

Code Factory have an Eloquence & Vocalizer bundle. They also sell Eloquence as a standalone SAPI 5 voice which can be used with any program.

There are a number of other paid options as well. Tiflotecnia’s Vocalizer synthesizer is an alternative to the Code Factory offering. Acapela, Cereproc, Harpo software are all paid offerings.

New Windows OneCore voices can be added by installing new language speech packs in Windows. Any SAPI 5 compatible voice should also be able to work with NVDA.

New features

What’s new in NVDA 2024.1?

The release candidate for NVDA 2024.1 is due out in time for CSUN (we wrote this page beforehand so don’t have a link, but check “Recent posts” in the page footer).

Some of the key features coming in NVDA 2024.1 include:

  • On-Demand speech mode (only speaks when commanded)
  • Set which speech modes cycle with NVDA+s
  • Native Selection Mode in Firefox NVDA+shift+f10 (enables copying information with formatting with control+c)
  • Add-on store supports bulk actions (eg installing or updating)
  • Updates to eSpeak-NG, LibLouis, Unicode CLDR
  • New Thai, Filipino and Romanian Braille tables

Unless any major issues are identified, the release candidate will be identical to the final build. So, we encourage all users to test it out and Give us feedback on any issues.

Other recent updates

There have been many exciting new features, fixes and improvements over the past year. Here are just a few (which will fit on a PowerPoint slide:

  • Audio responsiveness, sound & voice volume controls (2023.3)
  • Option to periodically refresh OCR (2023.3)
  • Add-on Store built-in to NVDA (2023.2)
  • Ability to override add-on compatibility (2023.2)
  • New Braille features, commands & table support (2023.2 & .3)
  • Flattened object navigation (2023.2) Press NVDA+9 / 3 or NVDA+shift+[ ]
  • Many more bug fixes, updates and new features

Please note: Overriding add-on compatibility ONLY overrides the compatibility check NVDA does for each add-on. This can allow you to use an add-on which is NOT declared compatible with the current version. This does NOT make an incompatible add-on actually work if features it relies on have changed.

Actions from Feedback

We got great feedback from everyone at CSUN 2023! Several direct actions we have taken in response to that feedback:

WASAPI: Lots of improvements based on comments and suggestions.

New “Donor Badge” directly from CSUN 2023 feedback. Get at: nvaccess.org > donate

Sean: Community fixes in recent & upcoming releases

Lots of input and fixes submitted to NVDA by community contributors:

  • New quick nav commands – Tony
  • Keeping audio devices awake – Tony and Jamie
  • Sound split – Tony
  • Speech mode: on-demand – Cyrille
  • Braille bug fixes – Emil
  • Add-on store bug fixes: – Lukasz
  • LibreOffice Fixes – Michael W
  • Various fixes – Leonard, Cyrille
  • Dependency updates – Bill D
  • Windows fixes – Joseph

Dr Gerald Hartig, intro and roadmap

Title: Chief Technology Officer

Role: Responsible for the technical & product roadmap of NVDA, and engineering management

Current NVDA Roadmap*

  • MathCAT integration
  • Enhanced braille support
  • Keeping up with changes in technology and 64-bit migration
  • Office UIA performance enhancement
  • Exploring the potential of AI image description

*Subject to change!

We want feedback on these priorities from the community

James Boreham: NV Access and NVDA Sustainability

As General Manager of NV Access I am responsible for the oversight of Operations, Finances, Business Planning and Strategy in partnership with the NV Access team and Board.

A major part of my role is looking for opportunities and implementing actions to ensure NVDA’s sustainability.

We have put in place a number of actions to diversify and grow our income streams, to ensure NV Access and NVDA are around for the long-term Microsoft, Google and Adobe continue to sponsor NV Access, and we work closely with them to ensure NVDA works effectively with their operating systems and software.

We continue to work with likeminded blindness agencies, nonprofits, assistive technology support providers and government departments in locations around the world to ensure that NVDA users have access to the support, training and resources they need.

We have invested in growing the capacity of NV Access, as demonstrated by the appointment of our new Chief Technology Officer and our new Graduate Developer.

Training, support & certification

The Quick Start Guide

Introduced in NVDA 2022.4, the Quick Start Guide is designed to get anyone up and running with NVDA in minutes. It includes:

  • Steps for downloading and installing NVDA
  • Running NVDA for the first time
  • Explanation and setting the NVDA modifier key
  • Common keystrokes:
    • Starting & Stopping NVDA
    • Reading text
    • Reporting information
    • Control what NVDA reads
    • Synth settings ring
    • Web navigation

NVDA Training material

We have a suite of training material available for NVDA: Basic Training for NVDA. The main training module for NVDA and the one we recommend most users start with. It covers concepts from getting started up to browsing the web and using object navigation. Available in Electronic Text, Human-read, MP3 Daisy audio and physical, UEB Braille.

From “Basic Training for NVDA”, the user can expect to learn:

  • Getting started with NVDA
  • Getting around Windows
  • Basic configuration
  • Writing and editing text
  • Document formatting
  • File management
  • Multi-tasking
  • Browsing the web
  • Forms on the web
  • Using the review cursor
  • Object navigation
  • Advanced topics
  • Navigating settings
  • NVDA setup guide

Also available: Microsoft Word, last updated March 2024, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint with NVDA modules.

The Office modules work with any version of Office from From Office 2010 through Office 365.

All available in The NV Access shop.

The NVDA Productivity Bundle

For $199 AUD (roughly $130 – $140 USD), the NVDA Productivity Bundle is a suite of training and support. This includes NVDA (with it’s user guide and quick start guide to get you going), plus:

  • Basic Training for NVDA (eBook)
  • Microsoft Word for NVDA (eBook)
  • Microsoft Excel for NVDA (eBook)
  • Microsoft Outlook for NVDA (eBook)
  • Microsoft PowerPoint for NVDA (eBook)
  • 3 Hours of NVDA Telephone Support

Cover image for NVDA Productivity Bundle

Cover image for NVDA Productivity Bundle

The NVDA Productivity Bundle is perfect for funded plans or Corporate use. Everything you need is in one, simple purchase. The NVDA Productivity Budnel is attractive for individual users as well. It comes at a great saving compared to buying each element on its own.

(Not just) Telephone support

NV Access are pleased to offer 24/7 live support.

It can be purchased in as little as ½ hour blocks. There are 3 hours in the NVDA Productivity Bundle. Support is available 24/7. For telephone, we offer local Australian and US Telephone numbers. Or contact us and we’ll ring you or use a service of your choice (eg Google meet, Teams, Teamviewer, Zoom etc).

Image of telephone to NV Access support.

Image of telephone to NV Access support.

NVDA Expert Certification

The NVDA Expert Certification is an exam which is free for anyone to sit. It comprehensively tests you on your knowledge and skills with NVDA.

Once you pass the exam, if you wish to purchase the certificate and listing on our list of experts, the cost is $100 AUD (roughly $60 – $70 USD). There is a 50% discount for those updating.

And for those needing help, the list of NVDA Certified Experts is a great place to look for a local expert to help you.

NVDA Expert Certification image (NVDA logo with a ribbon and wearing a mortarboard).

NVDA Expert Certification image (NVDA logo with a ribbon and wearing a mortarboard).

Corporate use

Information for Corporate and Government users

NVDA is used in many corporate and government settings. Corporate users often have special requirements. We are pleased to be able to work with them to get the information needed before rolling out new software.

Our Corporate and Government page lists a lot of information, including:

  • VPAT 2.4 inc WCAG 2.0, Section 508 and EN 301 549
  • NDIS Australia (Please let us know of other govt initiatives)
  • NVDA License agreement
  • Very little collected information
  • No internet access needed (except update check, add-on store)
  • Corporate support

Full details on the Corporate and Government page

Open Source software

NVDA as downloaded from www.nvaccess.org contains only code written, or directly checked and approved, by NV Access.

You can verify this by checking the digital signature in the “Digital signature” tab of the file properties.

While Open-source is widely embraced by corporate users, our corporate page can be a resource for links to corporate and government policies such as:

Microsoft use open source: code, including in Windows: https://opensource.microsoft.com/

A quote from Google: “Bringing all the value of open source to Google and all the resources of Google to open source” https://opensource.google/

Many governments also mandate an Open-Source first policy. This includes the US, UK and Australian governments. More information and links to those policies on the NV Access Corporate and Government page

Using NVDA to test for accessibility

In short, yes you can! Many organisations use NVDA as part of their testing toolkit. In these situations, features such as the Speech & Braille Viewers and log can all be useful.

It is important to note that NV Access is not a web accessibility company. Please do liaise with companies such as Intopia, Tenon.io, Deque, WebAIM, etc. for expertise.

If you find NVDA useful to your business, please consider donating. Or contact us to discuss how you can support our work.

Screenshot of a PC desktop with NVDA icon top left, NVDA's speech viewer on the left, Braille viewer above, Log viewer on the right and the Input Gestures window in the middle.

Screenshot of a PC desktop with NVDA icon top left, NVDA’s speech viewer on the left, Braille viewer above, Log viewer on the right and the Input Gestures window in the middle.


Join the community

There are many ways you can join in and be part of the NVDA community!

The main international E-Mail list. Other email lists and resources. Our developer e-mail list Raise or research issues or contribute code on GitHub Translating NVDA

Add-on development: github.com/nvaccess/nvda/blob/master/projectDocs/dev/addons.md

If you are coming over to NVDA from Jaws, there is a guide to Switching from Jaws to NVDA.

And of course, one of the biggest ways you can contribute is by spreading the word. Both about NVDA, and by being a champion for accessibility in general.

Contacting NV Access

There are many ways to reach us. You can Email us.

We are quite active on social media:

You can also follow our In-Process blog.

Thank you for coming to our session and checking out this info. We hope you got something from everyone. If you do have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out!