[nfbwatlk] FW: [MGeo] Mobile Accessibility: Code Factory Goes Android!

Jacob Struiksma lawnmower84 at hotmail.com
Wed Mar 2 12:50:28 CST 2011


 

Mobile Accessibility: Code Factory Goes Android!


Features Touchscreen Navigation, Speech Recognition, Web and Email Access,
and Nuance’s Vocalizer® Text-to-Speech


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Terrassa (Barcelona), Spain, March 2nd, 2011


Today, Code Factory is delighted to introduce Mobile Accessibility, a
screen-access application that allows people who are blind or have low
vision to use an Android phone in an intuitive, easy and simple way. Mobile
Accessibility is the first accessible Android application that permits
intuitive touchscreen navigation of Android phones, featuring text readback
via natural sounding voices powered by Nuance’s Vocalizer® text-to-speech
technology.

“Mobile phones have proved to be among the fastest-changing consumer
technologies in the world – particularly with the advent of the Android
platform. So making mobile phones accessible to the blind and visually
impaired is therefore challenging, fascinating, thrilling and totally
exciting all at the same time,” explained Eduard Sánchez, Code Factory’s
CEO. “There was no doubt that we would target the  Android platform, as we
very quickly realized that there was a real need in this specific market for
an accessible solution that can provide a user-friendly experience for all
blind and low-vision consumers. Mobile Accessibility allows everyone, from
beginners to the most tech-savvy, to use an Android phone, no matter if it
has physical keys or is touchscreen-only.”

Mobile Accessibility is two products in one:

*	A suite of 10 accessible applications (Phone, Contacts, SMS, Alarm,
Calendar, Email, Web, Where am I, Apps and Settings) that have been
specially designed for the blind and visually impaired. They all have a
simplified interface whose textual information is spoken using Nuance
Vocalizer® voice synthesis. 

*	A screen reader that allows users to get out of the suite and
navigate the standard interface of their phone. 


“Mobile Accessibility provides both access to the mainstream apps of the
phone and access to special apps for blind people. Why? Because our
philosophy has always been to allow our users to use the phone the same way
as everyone else. However, we also believe that having some special apps for
the most common tasks can be extremely useful if it means gaining in
productivity,” added Eduard Sánchez.

The major features of Mobile Accessibility are the following:

*	Touch navigation: You can use Mobile Accessibility not only with the
trackball or the physical keyboard of your phone, but also with its
touchscreen! Simply move your finger around the screen and the voice
synthesis will read the text located under your finger. Or if you prefer,
you can also swipe up/down/right/left and tap on the screen to navigate
through the interface. And if you wish you can enable sound and vibration
feedback. 

*	Easy to input text: In or outside the Mobile Accessibility suite you
can use the touch QWERTY keyboard as well as the speech recognition to write
text quickly and easily. Imagine writing an SMS or an Email using your voice
only. 

*	Voice synthesis: Code Factory has been making mobile phones
accessible to the blind and visually impaired for many years now, and they
know that the voice matters... and a lot! For Mobile Accessibility, Code
Factory has partnered with Nuance® to leverage its trusted Vocalizer
text-to-speech technology, providing consumers with natural sounding voice
readback.  


“With around 314 million visually impaired persons around the world, we
believe that it’s our joint obligation to facilitate access to information
and mobile communication to everyone” says Arnd Weil, VP & General Manager
Automotive / Consumer Electronics, Nuance Communications. “By offering
screen reader functionality for Android phones using Nuance Vocalizer, Code
Factory gives blind and visually impaired persons access to one of the most
important mobile platforms with the market’s most natural sounding and
intelligible voices.”

Inside the Mobile Accessibility suite of accessible applications you can do
the following:

*	Phone: Make calls, answer calls, hear the caller ID and manage your
call log. 

*	Contacts: Manage your contacts, even those from social networks such
as Facebook.  

*	SMS: Compose and read short messages. Manage conversations. 

*	Alarms: Set your alarms. 

*	Web: Full web browser experience, similar to what you can find on
your PC. Jump by the control of your choice (links, paragraphs, headings,
forms, etc.) to navigate faster to the information of your interest.
Bookmark your favourite webpages. 

*	Calendar: Create, edit and delete a calendar entry. View all events
per day, week or month. 

*	Email: Full access to your Gmail account 

*	Where am I? : GPS application that gives you updates on your current
location. 

*	Settings: Change ringtone. Configure feedback and notifications
(vibration or audio). Configure keyboard echo, punctuation verbosity, speech
pitch and rate, etc. 

*	Quick access to date and time, phone status information such as
battery level and network coverage, number of missed calls and unread
messages, etc.


To hear Mobile Accessibility in action listen to videos and audio demos at
http://www.codefactory.es/en/products.asp?id=415#video 

Mobile Accessibility supports all Android phones from version 2.1 and above.
Please note that voice recognition is only supported with version 2.2 and
above. Note also that if you want to use the screen reader functionality of
Mobile Accessibility you will need a phone with physical navigational
controls such as a trackball or trackpad. You can find more information
about Android phones at http://www.google.com/phone/#manufacturer=all
<http://www.google.com/phone/#manufacturer=all&category=all&carrier=all&coun
try=all&reset_filters=1>
&category=all&carrier=all&country=all&reset_filters=1 

At the time of this release Mobile Accessibility is only available in
English, but soon Code Factory will release other versions of Mobile
Accessibility for Spanish, Italian, German, French and Portuguese. Note that
Mobile Accessibility doesn’t support multiple languages at one time. If you
buy the English version of Mobile Accessibility you will not be able to use
it in another language like French or Spanish. There will be a specific
version of Mobile Accessibility for each language and each version will have
to be purchased separately.

You can now get a Mobile Accessibility Demo from the Android Market and try
the product for free for 30 days:

*	Mobile Accessibility Demo US:
https://market.android.com/details?id=es.codefactory.android.app.ma.vocalize
renudemo
<https://market.android.com/details?id=es.codefactory.android.app.ma.vocaliz
erenudemo&feature=search_result> &feature=search_result 

*	Mobile Accessibility Demo UK:
https://market.android.com/details?id=es.codefactory.android.app.ma.vocalize
rengdemo
<https://market.android.com/details?id=es.codefactory.android.app.ma.vocaliz
erengdemo&feature=search_result> &feature=search_result 


Soon Mobile Accessibility will be available for purchase through the Android
Market at the price of 69 EUROS. You can purchase the application directly
from the Market application of your Android phone, or from the web page
https://market.android.com . Before buying the app make sure to check out
our website at http://www.codefactory.es/en/products.asp?id=415 to see what
carriers offer the product for free to their customers.

To learn how to use Mobile Accessibility for Android, please consult the
user guide at http://www.codefactory.es/MA/en/ma_1_0_manual.html. For
technical assistance, please submit a ticket through Code Factory’s Help
Desk at http://www.codefactory.cat/helpdesk/. 

For more information about Mobile Accessibility and Code Factory subscribe
to the Mobile Accessibility mailing list at
http://www.codefactory.es/en/list.asp?id=88, visit our website at
http://www.codefactory.es or follow the company on Twitter at
http://twitter.com/codefactory and use the hashtag #MA to talk about Mobile
Accessibility.


About Code Factory  


Founded in 1998 and headquartered in Terrassa (Barcelona), Spain, Code
Factory is the global leader committed to the development of products
designed to eliminate barriers to the accessibility of mobile technology for
the blind and visually impaired. Today, Code Factory is the leading provider
of accessible mobile applications such as screen readers, screen magnifiers,
and Braille interfaces. Code Factory’s products are compatible with the
widest range of mainstream mobile devices running on Symbian, Windows
Mobile, BlackBerry Smartphones, and Android. Among Code Factory's customers
are well known organizations for the blind such as ONCE in Spain, and
carriers such as AT&T, Bouygues Telecom, SFR, TIM and Vodafone. 


About Nuance Communications, Inc.


Nuance is a leading provider of speech and imaging solutions for businesses
and consumers around the world. Its technologies, applications and services
make the user experience more compelling by transforming the way people
interact with information and how they create, share and use documents.
Every day, millions of users and thousands of businesses experience Nuance’s
proven applications and professional services. For more information, please
visit: nuance.com <http://www.nuance.com> .


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