DEDICATED TO IMPROVING THE LIVES OF BLIND AND VISUALLY IMPAIRED PEOPLE

Getting around and Seeing the World – Apps, Apps and More Apps

One of Ahmat’s favorite apps is Moovit, which provides real time information “whether you ride the train, subway, bus, light rail, ferry or metro, use dockless scooters, bikes, ride-sharing like Uber” for anyone and in a multitude of languages. Ahmat uses the application to find the nearest bus stops and bus arrival times as well as to get step by step directions to get you to the bus stop. Once on the bus, track the bus’s route so you’ll know when you’ve arrived at your stop. Moovit is free for your iphone, ipad or Apple Watch. Get the app here. Moovit has also collaborated with Microsoft and Aira so users can “call remote agents through the Aira app, who are then able to view a live stream via the passenger’s smartphone and direct them using Moovit’s route mapping services, which are integrated into the platform”. Read more about this nationwide service at cities today.

Envision is a smartphone app that empowers blind and low vision users to be independent by speaking out the visual world around them. It describes itself as describes itself as “a swiss-knife with new features being added all the time”. Take a picture of a scene and Envision will describe it. Scan and read documents. Take a picture of a long document or just hold your phone over it and read it. Envision recognizes objects or you can select an object from their existing list and scan with your camera to find that object. It can recognize faces and the user can train it to recognize faces of friends and family. It can even recognize handwritten text in 60 languages. Try it free for 14 days and compare with similar apps. For both iOS and Android. Get the app and more info here. Envision, which is based in The Netherlands, has introduced, in partnership with Google Glass Enterprise Edition 2, a line of smart glasses in addition to the app (cost 1899 euros). While we don’t usually mention requests for donations in the bulletin, Envision has an item in its online store that we just had to include. “Behind Envision is a small team of passionate designers, engineers and creative thinkers who are constantly working on creating the best experiences for users all over the world. This requires us to guzzle down several cups of coffee a day. If you would like to show your support and appreciation for what we do, you could pitch in and buy us a coffee. We will be sure to send you a picture and a note!” It’s 5 euros.