Blind and visually impaired people have different problems in mobility because movement depends very much on the sense of sight. In fact, they must rely on their other senses to move independently. Pedestrian traffic lights are a big obstacle for them. Although there are audible traffic lights, they are only used in big cities and there are usually very few of them. Therefore, the main purpose of the application is to help blind and visually impaired people to use traffic lights that do not have acoustic support.
The application is intended to enable visually impaired and blind people to move independently on routes where there are no audible traffic lights.
The target group is visually impaired and blind people (or anyone who needs an acoustic traffic light to cross the road) who want to be more independent in their mobility.
Product is intended to improve social inclusion of visually impaired and blind people.
WHAT PROBLEM OR CHALLENGE DOES THE PRODUCT SOLVE?
The product solves the problem of visually impaired and blind people in their daily mobility. These people need acoustic traffic lights to cross the road. However, these are not available everywhere, especially in smaller towns, or in some cases, when they are available, the sound is turned off after a certain hour. This creates a lot of problems for the people who use them. In the absence of an audible signal, they have to rely on their own instinct or wait until they can ask someone to help them cross the street. This is a major problem as people often have to wait several minutes/hours for someone to arrive at the same traffic light. Some of the reasons are that the road is not as busy or it is an inconvenient time of day (e.g. late at night) and season (e.g. winter) when there are fewer people on the roads.
WHICH BENEFIT DOES IT PROVIDE?
The application provides a high level of customization, it can generate scenarios across several different types of disabilities. Moreover, the application provides a learning experience through the interactive game and increases the motivation to participate in this learning course.
This product is a multiplatform application (Android and iOS). The application would use a built-in camera to detect the traffic light. Based on the user’s own knowledge (e.g., they often pass that stretch of road) or the location of a traffic light known in advance (e.g., geolocation data), the user would position themselves near the traffic light. Using the camera and the ability to recognize objects, the learned model would recognize a traffic light. Object recognition will be developed using machine learning (ML). The user would then have to orient the camera to detect the light of the traffic light (also using ML). Of course, the device itself would guide the user on how to set up the camera. Since there may be a detection problem due to the light intensity, the option to develop a solution for night mode only is also a great help since this is one of the problems. When detecting light at a traffic light, the device would signal a visually impaired and blind person which light is currently at the traffic light. The signaling can be done through an audible signal and vibration. The application is optimized for use by visually impaired people, so all options must be read aloud by the phone’s text-to-speech engine.
WHAT MAKES IT STAND OUT?
The application is a smart solution to solve a situation where the solution exists (acoustic traffic light for pedestrians) but is not applied everywhere. Therefore, there is a great demand for such a solution, so that the passengers who need it become independent.
IS IT FEASIBLE TO DEVELOP THIS PRODUCT?
It is feasible to develop this product as it is a software product which can be developed on any PC with medium-range specifications. However, extensive testing is required to determine the extreme safety of the application so as not to endanger the life of the user.
The company should provide necessary equipment and a budget plan for software maintenance. If possible, company should also provide a group of testers that are among the target audience, i.e., visually impaired people, as well as any other potential consumer.
The company would receive the software solution which can be competitive on the market since it offers unique features when compared with similar solutions. This product would also have a positive impact on the company’s corporate responsibility.