A South-Korean based tech startup has designed and developed the Dot Braille Smartwatch specially for the visually impaired. The device could be the first of many devices designed for the visually impaired.
The device recently received crowdfunding and should be available commercially next month. The Dot Braille Smartwatch was initially designed approximately three years ago but was delay because of durability issues with the display and the functionality of its braille characters.
Dot’s braille smartwatch connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth and has the ability to receive text from any app or service including directions from navigation such as Google Maps. The watch comes with four cells of six tiny moving components and is inspired by Apple’s minimalist feature.
Eric Juyoon Kim, founder and CEO of Dot, noted that the wearable device is the first step in offering braille devices to the visually impaired. The company plans to ship 100,000 watches in 2017, with 40,000 on the waiting list for next year.
There will be a batch of 1,000 devices available in London, there was an agreement signed with the government of Kenya to build 8,000 units of its upcoming educational braille reader, the Dot Mini.
Dot also stated that they are planning to collaborate with Google for next year’s launch of the Dot Pad, an e-reader which will display shapes and images through buttons, a device that could aid the visually impaired when learning math and art.
We couldn’t find any official pricing information for the braille smartwatch or where it will be available. We did see a few blogs that mentioned that it would cost approximately $320.
Dot’s campaign received over 140,000 crowdfunding backers who are probably overly excited to finally feel the device on their wrist.