For the first time in human history, the deafblind have a two-way communication tool. Available in the form of a mobile app, Good Vibes is harnessing the power of the smartphone to empower the deafblind community across the world. While Braille helps the deafblind read and learn about the world around them, it is not a two-way communication language, which still leaves them in a void. How can we overcome these limitations by using technology?
Since the deafblind deciphers all things by sense of touch, what would help is a technology or medium that employs tactile feedback. It also has to be readily available, affordable, and dependable. All these qualities can be found in the ubiquitous smartphone. The designers simply found a way to convert English alphabets into tactile inputs (tap or a long press) and back into tactile outputs (distinct vibrations).
With the Good Vibes app, a whole new dimension of app design is being explored—one that works for those who can’t see nor hear. The result is ‘an invisible UI’ – probably the first of its kind. And it works like magic.