Infinum Hosts Empathy Lab for Global Accessibility Awareness Day

To underscore our commitment to creating inclusive digital solutions, we organized a hands-on experience for employees that demonstrates the challenges individuals with disabilities face on a daily basis.

Global Accessibility Awareness Day at Infinum was marked by a very special interactive experience. As a company dedicated to building fully accessible digital products anyone can use, we organized a unique exercise designed to immerse employees in the world of inclusive product development – Empathy Lab. 

Inaccessible digital products pose challenges not only for the billions of people living with permanent or short-term disabilities but also for anyone who finds themselves using a device in less-than-ideal conditions, such as bright sunlight. 

Our ongoing accessibility initiative, which this exercise was a part of, emphasizes the crucial role of creating inclusive digital solutions that cater to all users.

A journey sparked by a single email

Infinum’s journey toward prioritizing accessibility began with a simple email. Years ago, while developing an app for a banking client, we received feedback from a visually impaired customer who couldn’t make a payment without asking a sighted friend for help. This highlighted a critical gap in the app’s accessibility, particularly given the private nature of personal finances.

Disability is not just about biological impairment; it’s about the societal barriers that prevent full participation in everyday life. It is our responsibility to remove these barriers.


“Our client understood the sensitivity of the issue, and their feedback was a turning point for us,” said Ana Šekerija, who is now the leader of the accessibility initiative at Infinum. 

Beating the path to mobile accessibility

Mobile phones are an amazing example of an accessibility aid that is available (and affordable, compared to other existing tools) to billions of people living with disabilities. However, most mobile apps are not accessible, which makes even the simplest real-world tasks a struggle.

Poor overall accessibility of digital products is partially due to a lack of concrete, actionable guidelines for designers and developers. To address this, our accessibility team created a publicly available Accessibility Handbook, a comprehensive guide packed with best practices for accessible design, web and mobile development, and QA. 

By contributing our knowledge and lessons learned, we hope to guide other active participants in the digital world to create experiences that resonate with every user. 

Hands-on experience in the Empathy Lab

We can guide and explain all we want, but nothing beats hands-on experience in achieving true understanding. 

The Empathy Lab, set up as a polygon of accessibility tasks, challenged employees to complete simple exercises on mobile and desktop devices with accessibility settings enabled. The goal was to provide a firsthand experience of navigating digital environments as many people with disabilities do.

On mobile devices, participants were tasked with disarming a bomb (in reality, turning off a timer) using voice control, voice-over, or switch control options. This challenge required them to operate the devices using only their voice or head movements, which provided a better understanding of the tools many people rely on daily.

On desktops, employees had to navigate to and open the Accessibility Handbook on Infinum’s website. This task highlighted the process of web navigation with accessibility features turned on, but also also provided a great opportunity to raise the visibility of our Handbook. 

While all teams fought passionately, they were no match for the winners. Josip Januš, Darko Kukovec, and Mihael Šafarić completed all four tasks in an impressive 2 minutes and 20 seconds.

In the end, the participants universally agreed that Empathy Lab was more than a learning exercise – it was an eye-opener. 

Our team saw how important mobile devices are for people with disabilities and realized our responsibility to create a digital world everyone can use. By navigating through the tasks, it became clear how every little choice we make has a significant impact.

Building a more inclusive future

The Empathy Lab underscored the importance of accessible design and the profound impact it can have. “A little effort from people who create everyday tools, such as software, can open a whole world to people who need it,” concluded Šekerija.

Committed to maintaining this momentum, we’ll continue to invest our efforts into building a digital landscape that goes beyond meeting standards – a world where everyone can participate fully and equally.