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Accessibility features on HBO Max

You can use accessibility features to help you navigate the HBO Max app and watch shows and movies on HBO Max. HBO Max supports the following features:

Audio description

Audio description is an alternate audio track that describes what's happening on screen (for example, a detailed narration of the scene or action that's taking place). HBO Max offers a collection of audio description content on select devices. Audio description will be added for more shows and movies in the future.

Find titles with audio description

To find HBO Max shows and movies with audio description:

  • Go to Audio Description titles on your phone or computer.
  • Open HBO Max on your phone, tablet, or computer, then find and select the Menu button (upper-left corner), and choose Audio Description from the list.

The Audio Description category page is not yet available on TV devices, however, you can turn on audio descriptions in the video player on some TV devices (see below).

Play titles with audio descriptions

If a show or movie has audio descriptions, you can choose English - Audio Description for the audio track in the video player.

Which device are you using?

Here's how to turn on audio descriptions:

With a screen reader

  1. Start playing a show or movie, then double-tap the screen to open the player menu.
  2. Swipe to move the focus to Audio and Subtitles, then double-tap to select it (this opens the Audio and Subtitles menu).
  3. Swipe to move the focus to English - Audio Description (in the Audio section, if available), then double-tap to select it.
  4. Swipe to move the focus to Close Audio and Subtitle Settings, then double-tap to select it.

Without a screen reader

  1. Start playing a show or movie, then tap the screen to open the player controls.
  2. In the upper-right corner, tap the Audio and Subtitles button.
  3. In the Audio section, tap English - Audio Description (if available) and then tap X to close.

To turn off audio descriptions, re-open the Audio and Subtitles menu and choose the original language in the Audio section.

Here's how to turn on audio descriptions:

With a screen reader or keyboard navigation

Keyboard shortcuts: When browsing HBO Max on your computer, you can use tab to move the focus and enter to select.

  1. Start playing a show or movie, then press spacebar or p to pause playback.
  2. Move the focus to Audio and Subtitles, then select it (this opens the Audio and Subtitles menu).
  3. Move the focus to English - Audio Description (if available, in the Audio section), then select it.
  4. Move the focus to Close Audio and Subtitle Settings, then select it.

With a mouse

  1. Start playing something, then click the screen.
  2. In the lower-right corner, click the Audio and Subtitles button.
  3. In the Audio section, choose English - Audio Descriptions (if available), then click X to close.

To turn off audio descriptions, re-open the Audio and Subtitles menu and choose the original language in the Audio section.

You can turn on audio descriptions in the video player on the following TV devices:

  • Apple TV

We’re working to expand audio descriptions to all supported devices.

Apple TV

To turn on audio descriptions in the video player:

  1. Start playing a show or movie, then swipe down on the Apple TV remote to bring up the menu.
  2. Swipe right on your remote to move the focus to the Audio tab.
  3. Swipe down to move the focus to Audio Description (if available, in the Language section) then select it. To turn off audio descriptions, swipe down to open the menu and choose the original language on the Audio tab.

Closed captions

Most shows and movies on HBO Max can be watched with closed captions. When closed captions are on, audio is displayed as text on the screen (speech and sounds are transcribed into text).

You can turn closed captions on or off by choosing the Audio and Subtitles button (speech bubble) in the video player. To learn more, see Subtitles, captions, and alternate audio.

Screen readers

You can use screen readers to help you find and play titles on HBO Max. The following screen readers are supported by HBO Max.

Mobile devices

HBO Max supports the following screen readers:

Computer

HBO Max supports the following screen readers:

TV

HBO Max has some support for the following screen readers:

We're working to improve the screen reader experience on all supported TV devices.

Keyboard playback controls

You can use your keyboard to control playback on a computer. Here’s how:

  1. Start watching a show or movie on a computer, press the spacebar or p to open the playback control menu.
  2. Use tab to move between items.
  3. Press enter to choose the selected item.

Voice commands

You can use Alexa voice commands to find and play titles on Amazon Fire TV devices. To learn more, see Use Alexa commands on your Fire TV.

Siri dictation

You can use speech-to-text to search for shows or movies on your Apple TV.

  1. Open HBO Max on your Apple TV and choose the Search icon.
  2. Press and hold the microphone on your remote.
  3. Speak your search term into the remote.

You can search HBO Max by title, genre, actors, and more. For a list of ways to search HBO Max, see Browsing and searching HBO Max.