Thursday, January 29, 2015

We're famous! Well, some of us anyway....

Fox news kindly came to interview our very own Peter Tucic and Tom Perski recently to find out about assistive technology and how it has affected their lives. The interview covers the great app 'Be My Eyes' which we covered in the pages of this blog just last week. You can see the interview by following the link below!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Two New Videos, Watch Now!

We have been working hard on some new videos for our Youtube Channel and want to share the fruits of our labors with you!

The first video is about our Lighthouse Tools for Living Retail Stores, of which we have two: One at 1850 West Roosevelt Road, Chicago IL and the other at 222 Waukegan Road, Glenview IL. At these stores people with low vision or who are blind can find out about a whole range of devices designed to make every day tasks easier, from talking clocks and watches to large print keyboards and bump dots. Find out more by watching the video below!

Our other video is a demonstration of a fantastic accessible and tactile smart phone called the TelOrion. From the same people who make the Odin VI, this smart phone is perfect for those who find Android and Apple phones too complicated. Featuring a tactile interface, easy to use and full accessible menus and a host of useful apps such as a GPS for walking, OCR, color identifier and a lot more, this phone is a real winner. Find out more by watching the video below! 

As usual call us at 1-800-919-3375 with any questions!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Odin VI Accessible Cell Phone Does it Again...

We've been talking about the Odin VI accessible cell phone for a while because we think it is a great product. For those who need a simple, fully accessible and well made cell phone the Odin VI is a great choice. For many smart phones are too complicated and have too many features that they never use. The Odin VI is perfect for those. 

Now the AFB's prestigious online magazine AccessWorld has picked up on the Odin VI and agree wholeheartedly with what we have been saying. A fantastic review of the phone has been published in this months issue highlighting the phones accessibility and ease of use. To read the review go here 

If you want a refresher on the phone itself you need look no further than our video review below!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Be My Eyes

As it was launched last Thursday the 15th, the new iPhone and iPad app, Be My Eyes, has already helped over 10,000 individuals and that number increases by the minute!

Be My Eyes is an app specifically designed to help blind individuals send for "help" via their smart phone or device by connecting with a sighted volunteer via video chat. How it works is the blind individual requests help via the Be My Eyes app. They are then connected with their helper in order to solve the desired task, whether it be a small task like getting the expiration date on milk or a larger one such as navigating a new part of town, the helper is ready to assist through the use of the video camera on your device.

Developed and launched in Copenhagen, Be My Eyes was created by a visually impaired individual who just had a small idea that became this amazing app. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, simply download the app to sign-up. It is free to download via the App Store and available in many languages.

Click here to visit the Be My Eyes website. If you are an Android user, be sure to visit the site as well to sign up to be notified when Be My Eyes is available for your device.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

And another new video!

Today we have another new video for you! This one is highlighting the excellent Magnisight HD CCTV, a high-definition CCTV from Magnisight. Featuring a great image, solid build and low cost this CCTV is another winner. Watch the video below to learn more, or follow this link to see it in our store!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

New Video! - The Veo CCTV from Reinecker

We recently got the Veo CCTV from Reinecker in to play with, and first impressions have been good! The CCTV features a sleek futuristic design, crystal clear HD image and a smooth X-Y table. Coming in a variety of different setup options, the Veo can be tailored to suit your individual needs. 

As they say an image speaks a thousand words, you should probably check out the video demo we have done below! And check out the Veo at our store website here: 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Android Lollipop Makes Another Step in Accessibility

Google's latest operating system, Android Lollipop, came out in November and offered a slew of new features for those with Android based devices. For the visually impaired two new features were added that promise to help make using their device easier. 

Firstly we have a 'Large Text' option accessed in Settings>Accessibility which does exactly what it sounds like! Text throughout your device will be enlarged and made easier to see (although you cannot choose how much larger it is made). 

Next up is a high contrast mode, which will make text bolder either through outlining it or making the text color darker depending on the text. Again, this can be toggled on or off in the Settings>Accessibility menu. 

Along with the preexisting magnification and Talkback features, users who are blind or have a visual impairment now have a good range of options with which to make their Android based device easier to use. Check out the link below to see a great video on some of the new features in Android Lollipop!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Money for All

For many years, the only way for someone who was blind or visually impaired to identify United States paper currency was through the use of a costly money identifier that was often left behind as soon as a new style of bill was minted. In 2010 that greatly changed with the introduction of the iBill money reader which was a very small device that could easily fit in someone’s pocket and used either voice, vibration, or sound feedback to tell a user what currency he/she inserted into the device. For those who did not jump on the iBill bandwagon, apps for both IOS and Android were put out that both quickly and accurately were able to identify money in real time.

As of January 2nd of this year, all residents who are blind or visually impaired are now entitled to a free money reader courtesy of the US bureau of Engraving. The reader is the second generation of the original iBill and is about the size of a pack of gum. The program is going to preface the eventual introduction of tactile identification that will be integrated into paper money in the future. Anyone who receives talking book services from the National Library Service is eligible for a free money reader and can order one by calling 888-NLS-READ, or by contacting their local Talking Book library. More information on the new program is available here, as well as an application form for anyone who does not currently receive NLS services but is still eligible.