A mobile phone for blind people is definitely an eye-catching headline, but not a regularly thought-of target market, especially for smart-phones. I’ve blogged earlier about Siri and the iphone talking about potential benefits for the blind with this development. However, I saw a newspaper clipping in an office I visited recently, which grabbed my attention – Smartphones for blind people, designed by blind people??? Reading the article, it becomes clear that it is more about partially sighted people, rather than completely blind, but it is an incredible advancement.
There are many things I love about this innovation. It’s designed by blind people for blind people – such an important aspect of design and making things practical. If someone like myself (not blind) would have designed it, I’m sure it would look very different as I don’t have the day-to-day experience of being blind. In essence, they kept the end-user front and centre in the design and development process, which is so critical. Secondly, I love the “branch” app that can help notify the user where there is a low-hanging branch or object that they need to avoid. Brilliant. Not sure exactly how they made it happen, but a great feature I would think…and frankly, I know a few fully sighted people who could use such a feature… 🙂
It’s called Georgie and here’s a short a little video about it: