niche market- good affordable electronic equipment for visually impaired

Hi I am on this forum to offer an idea (with ulterior motive which I can be honest about - my husband is registered blind and has been incredibly frustrated for a good number of years. He is also a keen adventurer)

The visually impaired community are ever- growing with people living longer and developing macular degeneration and diabetes in younger people etc. There is increasing reliance on electronic equipment for all age groups.

For many years there are few good affordable options, specifically for

  1. small MP3 players for audiobooks, these must be very cheap and easy to make. Most nowadays have screen selection; if you want one with sticky out buttons you need to pay at least £300 from specialist services eg daisy machine. there are smaller devices with sticky out buttons which cost about £75 which are still fairly bulky and require you to put a memory stick into the side. I think this sort of thing could be quite cheaply made. after all sticky out buttons are the old fashioned way of doing things. Zen stone was very good but no longer made.
  2. this is a larger development project- soft ware to make computers accessible. Currently there is software for completely blind people that makes writing audible and there are reading devices that enlarge the type. For people with a little sight (ie at least 90% of registered blind people do have a little sight) it is ideal to enlarge print and also to have the option to get the computer to talk to you. There is only one software package which has numerous hitches. I don't want to name them on a public forum. My husband has to use this package, which until only recently only allowed use of internet explorer as browser. It causes extreme slowness despite purchase of a brand new computer. It causes the computer to crash regularly.
  3. talking GPS device. for sports eg speed distance covered and time taken, location, (would be brilliant if there was talking satnav for off road activties too eg on the water) with sticky out buttons (not screen led).

Deano is happy to help with blind persons perspective if anyone is willing to take this on as an idea


cheers fur noo!

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