Students from Polycech Paris-Saclay University have developed a sound guidance system for the visually impaired. Using small "beeps" which indicate the direction to go, this application must allow the visually impaired to be able to travel on public transport independently.
There are nearly two million visually impaired people in France. However, there is not much to help them get around, independently, on public transport. But here is an application that could soon make their lives easier.
When you have a good view, it is already difficult to find your way around stations, stations, to find the right connection. So imagine when you are visually impaired. How do you spot where the doors are on the platform? Inside, how do you know which places are empty? With distancing, it is even more problematic since there are prohibited seats. Result: we have no choice. We are totally dependent on others.
Well, a team of students from Polytech Paris-Saclay University has developed a program that will replace the person's eyes and give voice instructions to help guide them in total autonomy.
In concrete terms, how does that work ?
When entering the station, you take out your phone as if you wanted to film what is in front of you. And it will beep when you are facing a free portal to put your ticket. Once on the platform, when the metro, train or RER arrives, we continue to scan and the phone will "beep beep" as soon as we are in front of a door. Same thing inside, if the seat is free and there is no Covid sticker, again it will report this.
And it works on all lines and all public transport?
It is the objective. For the moment, the application is still in development. She still has to manage connections for example. But it is already tested in Rennes and in the Paris region. A partnership is also planned with the SNCF. The idea being to be able to use it everywhere: bus, tram, main lines, etc. It's called EzyMob and it will go a little further than the famous "tactile" tapes found on the docks today.