This page provides information on using Quip with only a keyboard, as well as with a screen reader.

Collaboration doesn’t work unless everyone can participate. That’s why Quip is continuously working to make every part of our tool fully accessible to the WCAG 2.1 AA standard. The page uses logical heading structure to assist with navigation. If you have feedback on Quip’s accessibility, or require more assistance, reach out to us via email.

Change Log

August 31, 2021

July 12th, 2021

June 8th, 2021

Low Vision and Neurodivergent Accessibility Tips

  • Quip is designed to work well at up to 300% browser zoom (a viewport as small as 480x384). We recommend using this method of magnification over text-only zoom if possible.

  • Quip follows your operating system preferences for light or dark mode. You can also override this setting manually in Account Settings → Appearances

  • To experience a higher contrast Quip UI in either light or dark mode, navigate to Account Settings → Accessibility and turn on “Increase Contrast”

  • To override all fonts in Quip with OpenDyslexic, a font designed to improve the legibility of long documents for people with dyslexia, navigate to Account Settings → Accessibility and turn on “Use OpenDyslexic font”

Keyboard Accessibility

Keyboard-only users will get more out of Quip by turning on Improve Keyboard Navigation, which can be found in Account Settings → Accessibility.

Turning on this setting enables:

  • moving keyboard cursor into @ mentions, which enables interaction with these links

  • accessing and interacting with embedded media, such as live apps and videos

To quickly navigate to the main content in a document or spreadsheet, use the Skip to Main Content button that appears at the very top of the page upon tab. If you have a Home navigation page open, the button will move you to file navigation.

Note: Tab navigation does not work in documents because it is used for indentation. To stop using the editor, use F6 navigation.

Move Between Sections with F6 Navigation

Move between different parts of Quip using keystrokes.

To navigate Quip sections: Use Alt + F6 (Windows) or Option + F6 (Mac). To move in the opposite direction, Shift + Alt + F6 (Windows) or Shift + Option + F6 (Mac). Quip remembers your place within each section as you navigate around Quip.

You can navigate to the menu bar, editor, conversation pane (when open), chat windows (when open), and the site navigation sidebar in both documents and spreadsheets. In a document, you can also navigate to the document outline. In a spreadsheet, you can also navigate to the sheets picker.

Use Keyboard Shortcuts

Use key combinations to perform Quip actions.

  • To see the full list of Quip keyboard shortcuts: Use Control + / (forward slash) (Windows) or Command + / (forward slash) (Mac).

  • To navigate within the Quip keyboard shortcut menu:

    • Use the tab key to navigate to the shortcut categories.

    • Use the left and right arrow keys to select the tab of your choice.

View Quip Commands

See a menu of Quip commands available in the menubar, editor toolbar, and keyboard shortcuts.

  • To view the Command Library: Use Control + Shift + J (Windows) or Command + Shift + J (Mac).

  • To search for a specific command: Type the name of the command and use up/down arrows to navigate to the one you’re looking for.

  • To execute a specific command: Press Enter. This will close the Command Library.

  • To close the Command Library without executing a command: Press Escape.

The Folders view has many convenient features for keyboard users. Find it by pressing the Home button in the site navigation sidebar and selecting the Folders view. While focused in the Folder tree:

  • To collapse / uncollapse the focused folder: Use the left and right arrow keys.

  • To delete an item: Press Delete (Windows) or Command + Delete (Mac) and follow the prompt if any.

  • To jump to an item: Start typing a string to jump to the next item in the tree that starts with the string.

  • To access the options menu for a folder, document, or spreadsheet: With the folder or item focused, press Shift+Enter or Tab and then Enter to pull up the options menu. To resume navigating through the tree, press Esc and then Shift + Tab. All actions in this menu can also be found by opening the item and navigating to the menubar. Windows users can also use the Applications key or Shift + F10.

  • To select multiple adjacent items: Hold down Shift while using up and down arrow keys. Use Shift + Home / End to select everything from current item to the start or end of the list.

  • To select multiple non-adjacent items: Use Control + Space (Windows) or Command + Space (Mac) to navigate between items, then press Space to select each additional item.

  • To select all items: Use Control + A (Windows) or Command + A (Mac).

Interact with Documents with a Keyboard

Interacting with @Mentions

Quip documents can contain many different types of @ mentions, which are dynamic links and buttons that reference other documents, folders, users, and more.

To interact with these mentions: Make sure Improve Keyboard Navigation is turned on. Move your text cursor into the @ mention, then use Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac) to trigger its primary action, such as:

  • Document / Folder: Opens the link in Quip

  • Date: Opens then focuses on a date picker

  • User: Opens then focuses on a Quip chat window with the user

  • Attachment: Downloads the attachment

  • Salesforce Data Mentions: Opens a Edit Record dialog

  • Formula: Moves focus to a formula editor

  • Math: Moves focus to a formula editor

  • Checklist Items: Toggles the checkbox associated with the item

To stop interacting with dialogs triggered by mentions: Press Escape. Learn more about creating mentions.

Read and Write Section-Specific Comments

Yellow speech bubbles to the left of the document indicates the sections where there are comment threads.

To read and respond to an existing comment thread, or to leave a new one, move your cursor to the section of interest, and us Control + Shift + C (Windows) or Command + Shift + C (Mac) to bring up the comment modal. Learn more about using comments with a screen reader.

Format Text

Use multiple features to make text formatting easier using only a keyboard.

Add and edit links using only a keyboard.

  • To follow an external link: Place your cursor inside the link, then use Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac).

  • To insert a link: Press Shift to select the text you want to link, then use Control + K (Windows) or Command + K (Mac). Add the URL, then press Enter to save the change. Use Esc to cancel the changes.

  • To edit a link: Place your cursor inside the link, then use Shift + Enter. In the link editor, you can edit, copy, or remove the URL. To save edits, press Tab to navigate to the Confirm button. To cancel changes, press Escape.

Insert and Use Checklists

Create and edit checklists using only a keyboard.

  • To create a checklist: From the beginning of a line, type [] (left bracket, right bracket), then press Space. The brackets will turn into a real checkbox embedded inside the document, and you can now type the label for this checkbox.

    • To create a new checklist item: Press Enter.

    • To create a new line in the same checklist item: Use Shift + Enter.

    • To indent checklist items: Press Tab. To remove indentation, use Shift + Tab.

  • To check or uncheck a checklist item: Place your cursor in the item, then use Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac).

Interacting with Images
  • To navigate to the image’s toolbar options, focus the image with your keyboard cursor, then use Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac).

    • To navigate to the toolbar options: Use the arrow keys. Note: Spot comments and cropping are not fully supported for keyboard-only interaction.

    • To stop interacting with the image: Press Escape until focus is restored to the whole image. Then continue to navigate the document.

Interacting with Embedded Spreadsheets
  • To interact with a spreadsheet embedded in a document, focus the spreadsheet with your keyboard cursor, then use Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac) to transfer focus to the spreadsheet’s toolbar.

    • To navigate the toolbar options: Use the arrow keys.

    • To navigate to the spreadsheet itself: Press tab. Spreadsheets supports a wide variety of keyboard shortcuts; reference these by using Control + / (forward slash) (Windows) or Command + / (forward slash) (Mac).

    • To stop interacting with embedded content: Press Escape until focus is restored to the whole spreadsheet. Then continue to navigate the document.

Interacting with Live Apps
  • To interact with a Live App embedded in a document, focus the Live App with your keyboard cursor, then use Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac) to transfer focus to the spreadsheet’s toolbar.

    • To navigate the toolbar options: Use the arrow keys.

    • To navigate to each of the Live Apps interactive parts: Use tab. Note: Not all Live Apps are fully supported for keyboard-only interaction.

    • To stop interacting with embedded content: Press Escape until focus is restored to the whole element. Then continue to navigate the document.

  • Special instructions for individual Live Apps:

    • Calendar: Move or change the length of an individual event by focusing the drag handle, then pressing enter to activate it. Then, use the left and right arrows to move the event.

Screen Reader Accessibility

Quip is steadily working to improve the experience for screen reader users.

  • We recommend using Quip in a web browser. The desktop and mobile apps are not reliably accessible at this time.

  • Quip is not yet compatible with all screen reader / browser combinations. These are the combinations we support for now:

    • On Mac: Use Safari and VoiceOver.

    • On Windows: Use Chrome and NVDA.

  • Quip spreadsheets are not currently fully accessible for screen reader users. We are actively working on improving this.

  • Screen reader users will get more out of Quip by turning on Improve Screen Reader Support, which can be found in Account Settings → Accessibility, or by using Control + Alt + Z (Windows) or Command + Option + Z (Mac)

    . Turning on this setting enables:

    • Hidden @mention icons, which improves screen reader navigation

    • Navigating to disabled buttons

    • Rendering LaTeX equations as plain text

    • Enforced system fonts in Safari

Top Tips

Understand Quip’s Site Structure

Quip uses landmarks and headings to assist with screen reader navigation.

  • Banner: The primary form of navigation in Quip. It is visually rendered as a vertical set of buttons on the left side of the page, and is referred to as the “Sidebar”. Each button opens a dialog.

  • Menu Bar: A level two heading precedes the menu for the document, spreadsheet, or navigation view that is currently open, which is navigable with arrow keys. After the menu bar options, there are a series of useful buttons including Share and Compose.

  • Ribbon: A level two heading precedes the formatting ribbon bar. While this is technically navigable with arrow keys, screen reader users will find it easier to use keyboard shortcuts or the Command Library to format text.

  • Outline: Documents only. A table of contents that is automatically generated from the headings within the document. Navigate within the outline using arrow keys, and press Enter or Space to jump to a specific section. You can disable the outline on a document for just yourself by going to the View menu and unselecting Show Outline.

Browse Home

Home is a navigation view for Quip that allows you to browse the documents and folders you have access to.

If you arrive at Quip from quip.com or through a link to a folder, you will automatically land within one of the Home views described below.

From a document or a spreadsheet, access Home by navigating to the banner region, and pressing the Home button immediately after the “Drawers” second level heading. This opens the Home drawer, which behaves like a dialog.

The Home drawer has two regions, defined by level three headings: Select View and Favorites.

  • Select View region: Contains three buttons: All Files, Folders, and Updates. Each button navigates away from any open document or spreadsheet into a full page view for navigation, and the Home drawer changes from a dialog to a complementary region. After clicking a button, you cannot use Escape to navigate back to what you were looking at before.

    • All Files View: The All Files view is organized into three tabs: Recent, Frequent, and Shared. The Recent tab shows recently used items. The Frequent tab shows your most-visited items. The Shared view shows items that are shared with you, starting with the most recent and organized by date.

      • To navigate through each tab: Use the arrow keys within the All Files view.

      • To access an item’s context menu: Press Tab while focused on an item to locate its “Options” button.

    • Folders View: Allows you to browse through the folders you have access to. By default, Quip’s folder structure is displayed as a tree view. Learn more about navigating Folders View using a keyboard.

    • Updates View: Shows the most recently updated documents across your organization, with the latest updated document at the top of the list.

      • Note: For now, the Updates view is not fully accessible for screen reader users.

  • Favorites region: A place to keep track of your most important documents and folders. To navigate the list, use the arrow keys.

Search in Quip

To search all documents, folders, and users: Navigate to the Search landmark at the top of the page, then press the Search button, or use Control + J (Windows) or Command + J (Mac) to bring up the dialog. Move your focus into the search combobox in the dialog.

To refine your search: Use tab to move past the combobox and through the filters like “Modified by” and “Recently opened".

Note: For now, Search is not accessible for screen reader users in Safari.

Use Documents with a Screen Reader

Read Documents with View-Only Mode

For a smoother screen reader and keyboard navigation experience, use View-Only Mode. In View-Only mode, you can read and respond to comments, but you cannot edit the document or spreadsheet. If using NVDA, use Browse mode to access controls in the document, like links and checklists.

To turn View-Only Mode on or off: Use Control + Alt + R (Windows) or Command + Option + R (Mac).

Create a Document
  • To create or import a document: At the top of the document, press the Compose button (or use Control + Alt + N on Windows or Command + Shift + N on Mac). Quip automatically focuses on the new document.

  • To give a document a title: Edit the the level one heading that automatically appears inside the document - it becomes the document title. To edit the title directly, use the title text input at the top of the document.

Using Primary and Secondary Actions with @ Mentions

Within a Quip document, you may encounter @ mentions: dynamic links and buttons that reference other documents, folders, users, and more. Mentions are dynamically updated with the name of whatever they’re pointing to, so are not directly editable.

  • @ mentions: dynamic links and buttons that start with an at-sign and reference other documents, folders, users, and more

  • embedded media: spreadsheets, images, videos, and Live Apps

To interact with these elements, turn on Beta Screen Reader Support Features, which will allow you to move your cursor inside mentions. Then use the primary and secondary action keys:

  • Primary action: Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac)

  • Secondary action: Shift + Enter

Different mentions announce their types when you move your cursor into them. Here’s what the primary action keys do with each type of mention in Quip:

  • Document / Folder link: Open the link in Quip

  • Date button: Opens then focuses on a date picker

  • User link: Opens then focuses on a Quip chat window with the user

    • Non-member user link: opens a modal to share this document with the user

  • Attachment: Downloads the attachment

  • Salesforce Record button: Opens a Edit Record dialog

  • Formula button: Moves focus to a formula editor

  • Math button: Moves focus to a formula editor

  • Checklist Items: Toggles checkbox

And here’s what the secondary action keys do:

  • Document link: opens a document preview dialog

  • User link: opens and focuses a user profile hovercard

To stop interacting with any dialogs triggered by mentions: Press Escape.

Creating @ Mentions

To create a mention in a document, type @ (at-sign) anywhere in the document. A menu will pop up with suggestions of what to insert. This menu works like a search box with autocomplete suggestions—type in the name of a coworker, document, folder, or Salesforce record after the @ to get suggested results, then press Enter to insert the mention into the document. To remove only the last name from a user mention, use the Backspace / Delete key.

Interact with Embedded Media

Quip documents can include embedded media elements, like images and videos. Each media element is shown as a button in the document.

  • To initiate interaction with the media element: Press the button using Control + Enter (Windows) or Command + Enter (Mac). This will open the element as a dialog and move focus inside the element to a toolbar.

  • To navigate in the embedded media dialog: Use the arrow keys to move around the toolbar. Press Tab to move focus from the toolbar into the element itself.

  • To stop interacting with the media element: Press Escape. Focus returns to the button for the element.

  • To add a new line after the media element: Focus on the element’s button, then press Shift + Enter.

Note: Quip currently provides limited screen reader support for Live Apps and spreadsheets

Using the Section Menu

The section menu allows you to access features (such as the Edit History, Comments, or anchor link) associated with a specific section of the document. When your text cursor is inside a section (such as a paragraph or a list) of a Quip document, use Alt + Shift + C (Windows) or Option + Shift + C (Mac) to move focus onto a button that triggers this menu. To return to the document editor, press Escape.

Export a Document

To export a document for reading, navigate to the Document menu, located immediately after the Menu Bar level two heading. Within this menu, press down until Export, then press the right arrow key, then use the up and down arrow keys to choose the format: PDF, Microsoft Word, HTML, or Markdown.

Collaborate in Quip

Section-Specific Comments

To insert a comment in a document: Move your cursor to the section of interest, and use Control + Shift + C (Windows) or Command + Shift + C (Mac). Enter the message in the comment dialog, then press Enter to send your message.

To read and respond to comments in a document: Turn on View-Only Mode. Existing comment threads appear as buttons that you can interact with. Pressing one of these button opens a dialog for the comment thread. Each existing comment is preceded by a level three heading containing the name of the author and the date and time it was sent.

To navigate between comments in a document: With a comment thread dialog open, press the “Previous Thread” or “Next Thread” buttons to easily navigate between comment threads. For now, this is the best way to navigate to comments on images and Live Apps.

The Conversation Pane and Document-Level Messages

The conversation pane is a complementary region located at the end of the Quip page sequentially, and on the right side of the page visually. It is a log of every action, edit, and comment associated with a document or spreadsheet, and is the only way to read and write document-level messages.

The Conversation pane is technically accessible, but not very legible for screen reader users because it can include snippets of text in the document as reference for the user. To show and hide the conversation pane: Use Control + Alt + C (Windows) or Command + Option + C (Mac).

To read document-level messages: Toggle the “Messages only” button, located immediately after the Conversation heading, to filter out everything except document-level messages from the Conversation pane. Each message is preceded by a level three heading containing the name of the author and the date and time it was sent.

Share documents and spreadsheets

To share a document or spreadsheet: Before the “ribbon” level two heading, use the Share button. The dialog allows you to specify the names of users with whom you’d like to share the content, and will provide suggestions as you type. Use the up and down arrow keys to move through these suggestions, and press Enter to select one. Press Backspace / Delete to remove any recipients you have added by mistake. Once you’ve added the desired recipient(s), use the "Share" button at the bottom of the dialog to provide them with access. You can press Escape to cancel sharing at any time while the dialog is open.

Ongoing Accessibility Efforts

Collaboration doesn’t work unless everyone can participate. That’s why Quip is continuously working to make every part of our tool fully accessible to the WCAG 2.1 AA standard. If you have feedback on Quip’s accessibility, or require more assistance, reach out to us via email.