Updated: Mar 4, 2019
People with visual impairments can use mobile features such as Siri to speak their commands, and they can utilize the text-to-speech functionality to send messages — but touch screens on smartphones and watches do not cater to this demographic. That is, until now.
A group of South Korean engineers are working on a "smartwatch" that will turn texts and other forms of data into braille. 'The Dot' uses a moveable braille interface comprised of magnets and pins that is strapped to the wrist like a watch. It first collects data from the smartphone, then translates it into braille using a series of magnets and pins.
Computers currently use braille technology, but The Dot will be the device to adapt it to phones. Engineers plan on marketing it for less than $300 in the U.S. While some have high hopes for the device, some critics have suggested the technology still has some distance to go.
Either way, it's great that people are finally coming around to working on something like this. It's only fair that those in the blind community also become weirdly addicted to and dependent upon their smart devices.