Microsoft has updated the headset for the visually impaired

    In 2011, Microsoft, together with the charity organization Guide Dogs, began working on the Cities Unlocked project , the essence of which is to develop a headset for visually impaired and blind people. The first version of the device appeared in 2014, and recently Microsoft introduced an update both in hardware and in software: now the gadget reports interference, and talks about the world around.


    The original gadget in 2014 using bone conduction headphones signaled interference on the way and guided the user, and the new version of the device describes places around a person : it’s like GPS, which tells about what is around.

    The system will inform you when there is a cafe, church, bus stop, bicycle parking nearby. There is no camera in the gadget, so it supposedly works in conjunction with a smartphone with the geolocation function turned on.

    Headphones are designed in such a way that they do not interfere with the user hearing what is happening around him. With the help of voice commands, he can ask to repeat something or ask a question.

    One of the applications of the system is for teaching a foreign language.

    In April 2014, a device created for the same purpose appeared on sale : the OrCam virtual vision system . The gadget consists of a camera, a bone conduction earpiece and a portable base that needs to be carried in a pocket or on a belt. The device remembers objects and faces, informs the owner when approaching them, reads signs, texts, reports about traffic lights and cars.

    Modern systems are capable of describing what is happening well , although they make mistakes.


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