Welcome to Comcast Help & Support Forums
Find solutions, share knowledge, and get answers from customers and experts

New to the Community? Start here.

5,807,368

members

32

online now

1,953,203

discussions

Top

ANSWERED: What is Video Description and how do I turn it on/off?

Question:

 

 

What is Video Description and how do I turn it on/off?

 

Answer: 

 

Comcast customers who are blind or have low vision can enjoy increased access to TV programs with video description.

 

Video description refers to audio-narrated descriptions of key visual elements of programming inserted within natural pauses in dialogue. Video description makes television programs, feature films and other media accessible to people who are blind or who have low vision, creating a richer, more independent experience. For example, video description describes key visual elements such as actions, facial expressions, costumes or scene changes in a program that a blind or visually impaired viewer would otherwise miss.

 

How do I find programs that have Video Description?
The cable networks and broadcasters determine what content receives video description and how information on that programming is provided to the public. Video description is available on select programs as they air live, when you watch them later on your DVR and on select XFINITY On Demand programs.

When XFINITY X1 customers browse the On-Screen Guide on their TV, the information for each program will note whether video description is available, indicated by the video description logo:
Video Description logo.

If enabled, voice guidance will announce the availability of video description as you explore the program's information in the Guide

 

The Xfinity TV web and mobile platforms also support video description services. Currently these platforms are only available to Xfinity X1 customers in select markets.

 

Some programmers may label programming with video description through logos that appear on your television screen and audio tones as a program begins.

 

How do I access video description?

 

 

For X1 Customers

 

Turn Video Description On and Off Using the X1 On-Screen Guide:

  • The easiest way to turn video description on or off is to use voice control.

    While watching full screen video, press and hold the voice control button on your X1 voice remote and say "video description." The voice control button is the third button up from the OK button in the center of the remote. It is a slightly indented rectangle.

    If video description is available on the program you're watching, it will begin playing immediately. If you hear another language or no audio at all, press and hold the voice control button and say "video description" again to turn video description off.

 

Enable Video Description Using the X1 Transport Bar:

  1. While watching full-screen video, press the down arrow on your Xfinity remote. The transport bar will pop up on the lower third of the screen.
  2. Press the left arrow twice to highlight the Video Description on/off option on the screen (the Video Description logo).
  3. Press OK to turn Video Description on or off.

 

Enable Video Description via the Accessibility Settings Menu:

  1. Press the Xfinity button on the remote control from any screen to bring up the X1 main menu. The Xfinity button is rectangular and is located above the up arrow key.
  2. Use the Xfinity button or the up/down arrow buttons to navigate to the Settings menu, represented by the gear icon on the right-hand side of the menu. Press the OK button in the center of the arrow keys to enter the menu.
    The Settings menu with gear icon highlighted.
     
  3. Once in the Settings menu, use the arrow buttons to navigate to Accessibility Settings. Press OK to select it.
    Settings menu with Accessibility Settings highlighted.
     
  4. From Accessibility Settings, use the arrow buttons to navigate to Video Description. Press OK to toggle Video Description On or Off.
    Accessibility Settings screen with Video Description highlighted.
     
  5. You can now press Exit to return to viewing your program. If the program has a Video Description track, you will now hear Video Description.
    • Note: You won't hear Video Description when a commercial is being broadcast. You also may not hear Video Description during scenes primarily featuring dialogue, since there may not be much on-screen action to describe.
  6. To turn off Video Description, simply repeat these steps from the Accessibility Settings menu.

 

 

For Non-X1 Customers

 

Enable Video Description on a Standard Definition TV Adapter with a TV Adapter Remote:

  1. Press the LANG button on your TV Adapter remote to bring up the Set Audio Languagescreen. The LANG button is a round button located in the center of the remote, at the bottom, just below the MUTE button.
    The DTA remote, black with white and red buttons.
     
  2. On the Audio Language Settings screen there will be a list of available languages. If only English is available, you won't see any other options. If Spanish or video description are available the list will show an audio track labeled SPA.
  3. The number keys on your TV Adapter remote also function as a directional arrow pad. The 5 key is your OK key and the numbers that surround it are the arrow keys (2 is up, 6is right, 8 is down and 4 is left.) Press up (2) or down (8) to move through the list of available secondary audio programs.
  4. If available SPA is the second item in the list, so you'll press down (8) once to highlight it then press the OK (5) key to enable it.
    The Set Audio Language screen with English and Spanish options.
     
  5. If video description is available on the show you're watching, you will hear a narrator describing the key visual elements of the program. If video description is not available, you may hear Spanish or no audio at all. In that case repeat the steps to turn the Audio Language back to English.
    • Note: The SPA audio track is used for video description and Spanish audio. The program provider decides whether to include Spanish, video description or no secondary audio. Only one secondary audio language at a time can be offered on the SPA audio track.

 

Enable Video Description on an SD TV Adapter with an XR2 Remote:

The XR2 remote, with black buttons.
  1. Press the xfinity button to display the menu. The xfinity button is a rectangular button situated in the center of the remote above the up arrow button.
  2. Press the down arrow key once to highlight Audio Language. Press OK.
  3. Use the down arrow key to highlight Spanish Audio (typically second in the list)
    The Set Audio Language screen with English and Spanish options.
     
  4. Press OK to accept the change. The OK button is a square button situated in the center of the remote in the middle of the four arrow buttons.
  5. If video description is available on the show you're watching, you will hear a narrator describing the key visual elements of the program. If video description is not available, you may hear Spanish or no audio at all. In that case repeat the steps to turn the Audio Language back to English.
    • Note: The SPA audio track is used for video description and Spanish audio. The program provider decides whether to include Spanish, video description or no secondary audio. Only one secondary audio language at a time can be offered on the SPA audio track.

 

Enable Video Description on a High Definition TV Adapter:

  1. Press the green diamond-shaped D button located just above the number 3 on your XFINITY XR2 Remote.
  2. If available, both Spanish and English language options will be presented. Press D again to toggle between available secondary audio programs.
    The Set Audio Language screen, with English and Spanish options.
     
  3. If video description is available on the show you're watching, you will hear a narrator describing the key visual elements of the program. If video description is not available, you may hear Spanish or no audio at all. In that case repeat the steps to turn the Audio Language back to English.
    • Note: The SPA audio track is used for video description and Spanish audio. The program provider decides whether to include Spanish, video description or no secondary audio. Only one secondary audio language at a time can be offered on the SPA audio track.
  4. Press EXIT to return to full screen video..

 

Enable Video Description on a TV Box with an XFINITY Universal Remote or an XR2 Remote:

Note: By default, the D button on an XR2 Remote will enable or disable video description on a non-X1 TV Box in Motorola markets only. Learn more about configuring this button in Motorola markets.

  1. Press the Menu button twice on the XFINITY Universal Remote Control. The Menubutton is the red oval button located to the right of the center of the remote. Find the right-facing arrow button and move your thumb to the right and then down.
    • If using the XR2 Remote Control, press the xfinity button twice instead of the Menu button.
  2. Use the arrow buttons to navigate to Setup in the menu and press OK/Select on the remote.
    Main Menu, Setup option is highlighted.
     
  3. Use the arrow buttons to navigate to Audio Setup and press OK/Select.
    Setup screen with Audio Setup highlighted.
     
  4. The Default Audio Track option, Channel Default, is always the channel's main audio track (unless you changed it previously).
    Audio Setup screen with On highlighted.
     
  5. Press the down arrow on your XFINITY Remote once to highlight Descriptive Video Service, then use the right or left arrows to turn it on or off.

Note: Video description (Descriptive Video Service) can only be heard if the program provider or cable channel is providing that additional audio option. Press the Exit button on the remote (above the Volume button on the XFINITY Universal Remote, and next to the xfinity button on the XR2 Remote) to resume program viewing.

 

Version history
Revision #:
3 of 3
Last update:
‎01-18-2018 11:23 AM
Updated by:
 
Contributors