Title: Blind users' assistive technology based on the Android platform

Authors: Jamal Al-Nabulsi; Jumana Ma'touq; Emad E. Abdallah; Tarek Haloubi; Ali Manasra

Addresses: Biomedical Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, The Hashemite University, Jordan; Al-Ahliyya Amman University, 19328, Amman, Jordan ' Institute of Automatic Control, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Germany ' Department of Computer Information System, Faculty of Information Technology, The Hashemite University, Jordan ' Biomedical Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, Al-Ahliyya Amman University, Jordan ' Biomedical Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, Al-Ahliyya Amman University, Jordan

Abstract: Because of the wide use of smartphones in our daily activities, a wide range of mobile applications have been developed to serve as assistive technologies. However, there is a lack of applications in the Arabic language to assist disabled people. The main aim of this paper is to build a simple yet accurate Arabic language application that is capable of helping blind users in real-time. In the proposed technology, the blind user captures a photo and records his/her voice inquiry. The query is instantly sent with the captured photo to a set of volunteers. The volunteers answer the blind user enquiries and send the answers back. Fifteen visually impaired persons and ten volunteers were used in the experimental testing. The scenarios were carefully created based on realistic situations. The subjects were then asked to answer a questionnaire to test if their queries were answered effectively and efficiently. The early results are promising because all blind users found the proposed technology useful and 80% of them wanted to use it on a daily basis. In addition, all volunteers found the application easy to use with clear instructions and 80% of them were excited about using it to assist blind users.

Keywords: blind user; mobile application; Arabic language; assistive technology; mobile phone.

DOI: 10.1504/IJICA.2017.086636

International Journal of Innovative Computing and Applications, 2017 Vol.8 No.3, pp.162 - 171

Received: 20 Jun 2016
Accepted: 21 Jun 2016

Published online: 15 Sep 2017 *

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