Skip to the content \ accessibility

Archive for the 'Assistive technology' Category

« Previous Entries

“New technology design agenda” needed for digital inclusion, research recommends

Digital skills training from local authorities and charities, and a bold new “technology design agenda” are needed to give people with sensory impairments the full benefits of digital services and products, a new study has claimed.

Conducted by Swansea University in partnership with RNIB Cymru (the Welsh chapter of the Royal National Institute of Blind People), the research looked at digital media usage by sensory impaired users in Wales, based on questionnaire responses from 396 RNIB Cymru members. Respondents were of a variety of age ranges (73% were over 65-years-old) and recorded themselves as possessing a range of visual and hearing impairments.

(more…)

Anticipated refreshable Braille reader launches, seeking to disrupt the market

The Orbit Reader 20 refreshable Braille device has been released in the UK, aiming to transform the current market by offering the technology to blind and visually impaired people at a low cost.

The device features 20 refreshable eight-dot Braille cells and can connect to Apple, Windows, Android and Kindle devices. Books and other texts (such as sheet music or magazines) in any language can be read from an SD card (the device also comes with a range of books and a dictionary pre-installed on an SD card). The Reader also offers basic note-taking, USB and Bluetooth connectivity, and is compatible with widely used screen-readers, including Jaws, NVDA and VoiceOver.

(more…)

Product reviews website asks consumers to get vocal

A consumer reviews website for people with disabilities and older people has put a call-out for users to give their opinions on all kinds of devices and products, helping inform other consumers before they buy.

The ‘Rate it!’ site features reviews of a wide range of products that can assist people with disabilities and older people.

(more…)

Vital Tech: Decoding assistive tech for all

It’s easy to take technology for granted. New devices and apps are being designed and built faster than most people’s appetite and understanding can keep up with, particularly in the rapidly evolving world of assistive tech (AT).

Despite this, there are surprisingly few resources available to help people navigate the sometimes-overwhelming world of AT. Vital Tech, a newly launched online platform, aims to change this by helping blind and visually impaired people get the most out of a range of assistive technologies.

(more…)

Digital banking – not a one-size-fits-all solution

By Donna J. Jodhan.

Digital banking continues to be a hotly debated topic in Canada, but this subject doesn’t just affect Canadians, it affects all customers doing business with banks around the world.

On the one hand, we have banks claiming that digital banking is the way forward and that in the mid-to-long term it will benefit all customers, whether they are visually impaired or not. On the other hand, there are blind and visually impaired customers who feel strongly that they are being left out by digital banking.

(more…)

Lawsuit claims Apple’s website is inaccessible for visually impaired users

A lawsuit has been filed against electronics giant Apple in the United States, over claims that its website violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and is not fully accessible to people who are blind or visually impaired.

The action has been taken by Himelda Mendez, described as “visually-impaired and legally blind” in the complaint document. Mendez is filing the lawsuit on behalf of both herself and “others similarly situated”, according to the complaint text.

In the complaint, Mendez is described as a “proficient JAWS screen-reader user,” but has encountered “multiple access barriers” when visiting Apple.com that denied her the same level of access to the goods and services offered by the company as sighted users.

(more…)

Going global: The Global Disability Innovation Hub

In July, a bold new partnership to improve global access to assistive technology was announced at the UK Government’s first Global Disability Summit. The ‘ATscale’ project features various strands being worked on by different partners, including the World Health Organisation (WHO), the Department for International Development (DFID), UNICEF and GDI (Global Disability Innovation) Hub.

For some, this will be the first they’ve heard of GDI Hub, although the organisation has been active in a wide range of global, disability-focused projects since launching in 2016.

Here, we take a closer look at the Hub and its work – including the ambitious assistive technology (AT) project announced at the Disability Summit –  through a chat with its Research Development Manager, Paul Steynor.

(more…)

On-screen TV guides to become more accessible for people with sight loss

Electronic programme guides used to navigate TV channel menus are set to become easier to use for people with a visual impairment or hearing loss, thanks to a series of new requirements for UK broadcasters.

Organisations using these electronic programme guides (EPGs) must now take the following four steps: provide a text-to-speech function within EPGs; highlight or list separately programmes with audio description or signing; provide a magnification or enlarging function, and; make sure that viewers can switch between default and high-contrast displays.

(more…)

From smartwatch wayfinders to robot farmers: Tech4Good Awards 2018

Earlier this month, the AbilityNet Tech4Good Awards took place in London, showcasing everything from tiny farming robots to an innovative new way of contacting emergency services.

Now in its eighth year, the event was created by technology access charity AbilityNet to celebrate digital technology projects designed to improve people’s lives and benefit society. Entries can be new or existing ideas, and can come from anyone, such as a charity, business or individual.

(more…)

Tech funding, employment and apps on the agenda at assistive conference

The government’s technology fund, disability in the workplace and new apps were among the topics discussed at the latest Assistive Technology Conference and Exhibition (ATEC).

Taking place in London, the conference featured a wide range of speakers from the accessibility sector, charities, government and beyond.

(more…)

« Previous Entries