A number of smartphone apps are making life easier for people with disabilities. From apps that help wheelchair-bound people locate accessible restrooms and parking to those that improve communication, help users control their phones, and even find lost items, mobile applications are delivering independence to people who are physically impaired.
Here are some of the best mobile apps available for people with physical disabilities.
Be My Eyes
This innovative mobile app connects people who have visual impairments with sighted volunteers via live video. The volunteers assist visually impaired users with guided problem-solving so they can complete a variety of everyday tasks. The app can be used to help people find lost items, read instructions or ingredients, and even navigate unfamiliar places.
Certain disabilities can make it difficult for people to access the functions on their phones. Fortunately, Assistive Touch enables users to access various smartphone operations without using physical buttons. People can use the app to adjust the volume, lock their screens, restart their devices, use multi-finger gestures, and perform a variety of other tasks with a simple tap.
After a catastrophic injury, people with mobility issues often have difficulty finding businesses that accommodate their needs. Access Now helps people with disabilities locate accessible places around the world. With an interactive map, users can find restaurants, hotels, stores, museums, and a wide range of other attractions and view their accessibility ratings. They can even filter the map by keyword or category to find locations that offer the accessibility options they need.
A free mobile app, WheelMate was designed to help wheelchair users locate restrooms and parking spaces that offer the accessibility they need. Over 35,000 are mapped in more than 45 countries, and travelers can rate facilities by cleanliness, convenience, and accessibility.
Babies who suffer a life-changing birth injury that results in cerebral palsy or Angelman syndrome often have problems speaking clearly when they get older. Using powerful software called Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC), the unique, open-source app helps ensure these people’s voices are heard.
NotNav GPS Accessibility
GPS for the blind, this app is designed to help visually impaired people explore the world. Similar to GPS apps that help drivers find their way, this mobile app identifies user-defined features like crosswalks, street names, crossroads, and directions traveled. The easy-to-use application can even be adjusted for accent and language.
Nonverbal adults and children can communicate more efficiently with the complex world with this talk-to-text technology. Available for Android users, the app gives users the ability to create complex sentences, import images and audio, and organize words into user-defined categories.
Google Voice Access
Specially designed for people with impaired dexterity, this mobile app enables users to manipulate their phones hands-free. People who use Google Voice Access can ask questions or perform basic tasks like sending a text message or making a call by simply making voice commands.
Thanks to these innovative apps and features, people who have physical disabilities are becoming increasingly able to experience independence.