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Royal London Society for Blind People / Wayfindr

Wayfindr is delivering audio-based directions to users’ smartphones to provide a more independent lifestyle to the visually impaired.

Problem

Many people with visual impairments would like to leave their homes more often, but find it difficult to navigate by themselves, especially indoors. And as assistive technology is usually different in different locations—if it’s available at all—getting from point A to point B can quickly become a complex challenge.

Project

With a $1,000,000 grant from Google.org, Wayfindr, Royal London School for the Blind's joint venture with ustwo, is collaborating with navigational tech leaders to develop audio-based wayfinding instructions through users' smartphones, using Bluetooth-enabled beacons. The initial pilot will be deployed in the London Underground in partnership with Transport for London.

Impact

With a uniform interface in place, technologists can build tools that work the same way, making navigation a more seamless process—and allowing people with visual impairments a more independent lifestyle.