This page contains a variety of links on assistive technology for people with sight loss that you may find useful. All products and apps are available in the UK, but some may also be available internationally. They are divided into headings if that helps you jump through the page.
Technology News, Reviews & Guides
- RNIB Tech Talk Podcast – “Each week Steven Scott, Shaun Preece, Tim Schwartz and Lydia Hulme talk tech news for blind people discussing the latest breaking tech stories as well as talking about technology at its most simplest.”
- Cool Blind Tech – “Your source for the best assistive tech news, reviews and interviews from top blind and low vision experts. an entertaining and trustworthy discussion on emerging technologies.”
- Double Tap Online – Reviews and news about the latest accessible technology, from the team behind the Double Tap Canada and RNIB Tech Talk podcasts.
- Talking Computers – “A free monthly audio magazine about using computers; especially for visually-impaired people who use screen-readers and other aids. All of the articles are provided by the listeners.”
- Vital Tech – “Your guide through the world of assistive tech. Our site is managed by blind and partially sighted people, for blind and partially sighted people. Browse our themes for guidance and instructional videos on all things tech. “
- British Computer Association Of The Blind – “BCAB is the oldest association of blind and partially sighted technology users in the world. Originally created to support computer professionals, we now promote and encourage the use of technology amongst all blind and partially sighted people.”
Equipment & Aids
- All Formats Transcription Services – Commercial company that converts documents into braille, large print and audio to make them fully accessible.
- Aspire Consultancy – “Assistive technology for the visually impaired. Advice, assessment, training, hardware & software.”
- Cobolt Systems Ltd – “Specialising in the design, manufacture and supply of innovative aids for the blind and partially sighted.”
- Eone Timepieces – Uniquely designed watches that allow you to tell the time by touch.
- Living Made Easy – “Europe’s largest trusted online catalogue of independent living equipment
- RNIB Shop – Various gadgets and other useful items to assist the visually impaired.
- Talking Watch Shop – Talking watches from Verbalise Ltd.
- VIP Diaries – Stationery including large print diaries, calendars, address books, etc, plus magnifiers, bump-ons, liquid level indicators, etc.
- Aira – “Connects people who are blind or low vision to a trained professional agent who is dedicated to further enhancing their everyday experience – completely hands-free assistance at the touch of a button.”
- EyeSynth – “Brings the most powerful assistive technology for totally and partially blind people. The glasses convert your surrounding 3D space into intuitive sounds. Easy to use, powerful and beautifully designed, to deliver the most empowering User Experience.”
- Give Vision – “SightPlus is a wearable headset that can be used to magnify close-up or far-away objects, change the contrast or apply custom filters to anything you are looking at. It is hands-free, portable and easy-to-use for a large variety of tasks.”
- OrCam – “OrCam MyEye 2.0 uses AI Technology and can read text, recognize faces, identify products and more.” Check out Holly’s review of the first Orcam model..
Magnifiers & Text-To-Speech
- Anyview – Portable and desktop video magnifiers.
- Associated Optical – Electronic and hand-held magnifiers.
- BAUM Retec – Braille displays and video magnifiers.
- Enhanced Vision – Electronic magnifiers.
- Humanware – Handheld magnifiers, desktop CCTVs, braille notetakers, Victor Stream audio players, and more.
- Olympus – Cameras and audio devices.
- Optelec – Magnifiers and text to speech readers.
- Optima – Magnifiers, CCTVs and monoculars.
- Pamtrad – Electronic magnifiers, text to speech devices and other useful gadgets.
- Professional Vision Services – Video magnifiers, software and braille devices.
- RoboBraille – Website that converts documents into accessible formats.
- Vision Aid – Low vision aids and lighting solutions for the visually impaired.
- How To Choose A Monocular – Articles by The Optical Advantage & WikiHow.
- ADI Access – Their Roommate product gives audio assisted navigation of disabled toilets.
- Live Braille – Navigation devices for the visually impaired.
- Sunu – A wearable smart band for the visually impaired that uses echolocation to detect obstacles.
- Ultracane – A hi-tech long cane with ultrasound assistance.
- Doro – Smartphones designed for the visually impaired.
- Fuss Free Phones – Smartphone featuring a button that connects you to an operator, who can assist you with calls, text messages, internet searches, etc.
- Synapptic – Smartphones designed for the visually impaired.
Software & Apps
Operating System Accessibility
- Apple Vis – Information for visually impaired users of Apple products.
- Apple Accessibility – All Apple products have features like Voiceover, magnification and more built-in, so you don’t need to buy any extra software.
- LookTel Voiceover Tutorial – This is an app that will teach you how to use Voiceover.
- Microsoft Accessibility – Information and updates from the Microsoft accessibility team about their products.
- Soundscape – Free Microsoft app to help visually impaired people navigate their surroundings, using 3D audio to pinpoint places, streets and other features of interest.
- BlindSquare – “Pioneering accessible navigation both indoors and outdoors. Know where you are, know where you’re going, travel with confidence.”
- Ariadne GPS – “More than a simple GPS app. Besides offering you the possibility to know your position and to get information about the street, the number, etc. it also lets you explore the map of what’s around you. If you have VoiceOver activated on your device, you will be able to know the street names and numbers that are around you by touching them.”
- Seeing AI – Free Microsoft app giving voice narration for the visually impaired, capable of reading short text, documents and handwriting, and describing products, scenes, people, colours, currency, light levels, etc.
- Tap Tap See – “Helps the blind and visually impaired identify objects they encounter in their daily lives. Simply double tap the screen to take a photo of anything, at any angle, and hear the app speak the identification back to you using VoiceOver.”
- Aipoly – “Object and color recognizer that helps the blind, visually impaired, and color blind understand their surroundings. Simply point your phone at the object of interest and press any of the recognition buttons at the bottom of the screen to turn on the artificial intelligence.”
- LookTel Money Reader – “Instantly recognizes currency and speaks the denomination, enabling people experiencing visual impairments or blindness to quickly and easily identify and count bills.”
- LookTel Recognizer – “Allows those persons having visual impairments or blindness to identify cans, packages, ID or credit cards, DVDs, and similar items.”
- Minerva – “Visually impaired people face different kinds of difficulties in their lives like identifying objects, reading texts from reading materials, recognizing the currency of money, and many more. Minerva is an Android application that empowers the visually impaired people to see the world through words everyday.”
- Prizmo – “Universal photo-based scanner app that lets you scan and recognize text documents, business cards, and images, and then export them as PDF/Text, vCard, or JPEG/PNG.”
- Selfiex – “Lets you take selfies with the better rear camera of the Phone, and voices directions to guide your framing: right, left, up or down.”
Text To Speech
- KNFB Reader – “Rapid and efficient text recognition app. Its text-to-speech, text-to-Braille, and text highlighting tools make it valuable for blind, low-vision, dyslexic, and others with reading differences.”
- Voice Dream Reader – ” Turn text into speech, like a performer playing music from score. 186 voices, 30 languages. Read just about anything that contains text. Load from just about anywhere.”
- Voice Dream Writer – “Draft. Listen. Perfect. Proofreads your writing with text to speech.”
Screen Reading & Magnification
- NVDA Screen Reader – Free screen reader for Microsoft Windows.
- Window Eyes For Microsoft Office Users – Offers a free copy of Window Eyes to visually impaired people who have a licensed copy of Microsoft Office 2010 or later.
- Big Browser – “Internet browsing application designed to help Low Vision users more easily navigate the web on their iPads. It’s extra large keyboard and controls, expanded pinch zooming, and multiple color themes make content easy to read.”
- Ai Squared – Seller of Zoomtext and Window Eyes, and large print keyboards.
- Computer Room Services – Software and hardware items to assist the visually impaired.
- Dolphin Computer Access – Provides Supernova, Guide, EasyConverter and EasyReader software.
- Sight And Sound – Seller of JAWS, Zoomtext and various other items of software and hardware.
- Be My Eyes – “Access visual assistance on demand, if you are blind or visually impaired, or lend your eyes to the blind or visually impaired if you are sighted.”
- VisionSim – “Allows people with healthy vision to see the world through the eyes of a person experiencing one of nine degenerative eye diseases.”
- VIA App Directory – “Helps identify apps that are useful for adults and children who are blind or have low vision, including those with additional disabilities. Users can easily sort through the 500,000+ apps in the App Store and locate those that were built specifically for, or provide functionality to, the user with a visual impairment.”
Audiobooks & News
- RNIB Talking Books – You can download books from RNIB Overdrive, or borrow books on Daisy CDs and USB sticks from the Talking Books service, all for free.
- Audible – Audiobooks you can buy and download, either individually or through special membership deals.
- British Wireless For The Blind Fund – Provides specially adapted radios for visually impaired people.
- Calibre Audio Library – Subscription-free service of unabridged audio books.
- Dolphin EasyReader App – Fully accessible reading app that plays audiobooks and converts text e-books to speech, by giving you access to various libraries including RNIB’s Overdrive.
- ISIS Publishing – Audiobooks for sale on standard CDs and MP3 CDs.
- Talking News Federation – Talking newspapers.
Audio Description – Information
- Audio Description Association
- TV Help Audio Description
- Videos by James Rath, Fashioneyesta, Annie Elaney, Abby Sams, Jessica King, Fields Of Vision & Well Eye Never