What You Need to Know Before Purchasing Apple Laptops

The new 2016 MacBook Pro models have two major changes in the hardware that should be noted.

Hardware change one:

The new SSD hard drive is soldered to the board. This means it cannot be replaced without replacing the entire logic board. Retrieval of data on the laptop may not be possible depending on the extent of the damage. (Apple warranty is for manufacturing issues only; not for liquid spills, drops or abuse).

With this new format, it will be critical for you to back up your data using the Piratedrive for sensitive documents and OneDrive for off-campus collaboration.

Hardware change two:

The ports on the sides of your new laptop have completely changed. They are now all USB-C, so you will need to research the adapters to attach any monitors, printers, keyboards or other peripherals. The Belkin USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter is required to attach to ECU’s network. Details can be found at: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204360.

New features:

Assistive Features Begin with Your Operating System

Both MacOS and Windows offer plenty of built-in assistive features so devices work specifically for YOU.

Here are a few options you can implement right now to make your devices more user friendly:


Open your laptop’s system preferences and choose Accessibility or tap your mobile’s Settings icon, then General to open the Accessibility category. Below are just a few of the features you’ll find:

  1. Display. Configure the display contrast that works best for you. There is also an option to “shake the mouse pointer” to make it easier to locate on the screen. The Display Preferences button allows quick access to your resolution settings.
  2. Zoom. Set your zoom range and configure keyboard shortcuts to zoom in or out as you need.
  3. VoiceOver. Provides spoken and brail descriptions of items on the screen. Try it out in the Apple Accessibility Support site’s Open Voiceover Training section to learn the basics.
  4. Dictation. Edit text and interact with your device using your voice.
  5. Use your mobile’s camera to magnify objects.

Visit the Apple Accessibility Support site to read about the featured topic or search an accessibility topic. You can also join the accessibility community to hear how others use these features. Apple Support is also available online to offer a suggestion or solution.


Like Apple, Windows offers a variety of assistive features to make your computing life richer. When you open the Windows Accessibility website, just choose your Windows version to find available features. Let’s take a look at a few options from Windows 10:

  1. Vision. Customize your display with high-contrast themes, text and pointer sizing and the option to turn off animations and backgrounds. Narrator, the Windows built-in screen reader, allows you to interact with apps and control your device without seeing the screen.
  2. Auditory. Replace audible alerts with visible alerts or customize your closed captions to make them easier to read.
  3. Physical. Your digital assistant, Cortana, can set reminders, open apps, search or send emails and texts or use speech recognition to dictate your documents.
  4. Cognitive. The Edge browser’s Edge Reading View option blocks distracting content from web pages so you stay focused.

To configure the Windows 10 assistive settings, open the device’s Settings area. Windows 7 and 8 systems can be accessed through the system’s Control Panel.

Siteimprove Accessibility Reports Now Available for Users

Phase II begins this month

As the owner of online content posted on the ecu.edu domain–including department CommonSpot sites, WordPress blogs and the MyWeb/WWW2 servers–you recently received an email announcing changes to ECU’s Web Standards and Responsibilities which includes adoption of the WCAG 2.0 AA accessibility standard.

One way we are helping you comply with WCAG 2.0 is the rollout of the Siteimprove Web Governance tool. Siteimprove constantly crawls our online content page by page to flag quality issues like broken links, misspelled words and accessibility problems. Issues are compiled into two, individualized monthly reports for each content owner who has requested them.

Siteimprove Project

The Siteimprove project was divided into two phases: 1) Quality Assurance (QA), and 2) Accessibility.

Phase I. During summer/fall 2016, Quality Assurance reports were released to users listing misspelled words, broken page links and broken PDF links. We’ve heard from users who requested reports that this has made finding and fixing quality issues a much easier process.

Phase II. begins this month (March 2017), and accessibility reports will be sent to those already receiving QA reports.

Siteimprove reports are easy to use. Click a link in the report to open Siteimprove’s online version. Errors are highlighted and the screen includes an explanation and appropriate fix.

In addition to the monthly Siteimprove reports, there is now a Siteimprove Accessibility Checker extension for the Chrome Browser. Once added to Chrome, you are able to check an individual page for WCAG 2.0 issues. Problems are highlighted on the page, and the extension includes an explanation of the problem and the fix.

Compliance Oversight

Please note that, as a part of the university’s Web Content Regulation, several randomly-selected websites are reviewed quarterly by Disability Support Services, ITCS and Creative Services to ensure compliance with accessibility, security and adherence to design requirements outlined in the regulation. Site owners are emailed the results.

Learn More and Request Your Report

  1. Visit the Siteimprove website for an overview of the tool.
  2. Submit the Siteimprove request to receive your site reports (both QA and accessibility).
  3. Visit the Get Started pages:
    1. Quality Assurance (QA) Report
    2. Accessibility Report

Need More Help?

In addition to online help, we offer one-on-one consults and group training to help site users get started. Submit the Web Hosting Support service request to schedule time with a team member or ask a question.