The advancement of technology has introduced many new opportunities. The introduction of smart home devices has introduced a new form of convenience and safety into our lives.
Now, you can see who’s at your doorstep with a single tap of your finger or even through a voice command. How? Well, this has been made possible by installing a smart doorbell and installing the doorbell app on your smartphone.
That said, when it comes to smart home devices, you need a reliable internet connection as well. If you are thinking of investing in a smart home device, you should look into Xfinity Internet deals to always have your smart device connected to the internet.
Believe it or not, smart technology has not only benefited the common man’s life but the visually impaired as well. In fact, smart technology has the ability to improve the lives of visually impaired individuals.
Of course, there are specific smart devices you can invest in for any visually impaired loved ones you might know of, or use basic smart home devices. In this article, we will be sharing smart devices that can prove to be a great help to the visually impaired.
Let’s get started!
Smart Lighting System
For visually challenged individuals, having control over the lighting in their houses might be crucial. Keep in mind that there is a wide spectrum of vision loss that falls under the umbrella term “visual impairment.” A person’s visual capabilities can range from being able to read writing at a very large size to being able to detect merely the presence or absence of light to having no visual capabilities at all. Some people are especially vulnerable to the effects of sunlight.
There shouldn’t be any need to fumble around for a light switch if lights can be managed via voice commands and, perhaps, motion detectors. Where a voice assistant would be out of place, such as in a hallway, motion sensors can be used to automatically trigger a lighting scenario.
People with low vision have a greater risk of falling down the stairs since they may not be able to tell where they begin or end. Place proximity sensors at the top and bottom of the stairs to alert passers-by with sound warnings. Customers who have some vision might also benefit from step lights, as they make navigating the steps much easier.
Smart Doorbells and Smart Locks
When it comes to home security, smart locks, and doors are viable alternatives to the usage of keys or keypads. These are useful because they allow people who are bedridden or have difficulty moving around to contact cleaners, caretakers, nurses, or therapists.
These may be accessed from your mobile device, and feature admin access that lets you choose who has access to your home and how often. These programs also record each person who enters and exits your home.
Smart doors and locks can be helpful for those with cognitive impairments such as dementia or Alzheimer’s. This is because they will not lock you out of your home in an emergency and can keep loved ones informed of any movements in and out of the house.
The user should never worry about leaving their home unattended again because there is always a means to access these locks regardless of whether the battery is dead or the internet connection is down.
Screen readers have been used for many years by the blind community as a means of accessing digital content.
Voice assistants and smart speakers, such as Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s Assistant, and Apple’s Siri, are more commonplace, allowing users to do things like control lighting, place orders for goods, and even play music, all by simply speaking to the devices. While many would likely view these additions as novelties, they are actually helping to make the lives of the blind and partially sighted more manageable.
The visually impaired can use their voice to access tools, communicate with others, and build social connections with the help of the Alexa Smart Speaker, and more especially the Echo smart speakers with Alexa. Because of this, they are able to feel safe in their own environments.
People who are blind or have low vision benefit greatly from having access to information like weather and news so that they may stay informed about what’s going on in their communities and know whether or not to bring an umbrella. Tools like kitchen timers, shopping lists, and voice reminders, as well as music, radio, and podcasts, will help these people confidently handle their domestic responsibilities.
Smart Smoke Detectors
The importance of smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms in a visually impaired person’s home is the same as it is in any other home. But it’s crucial to remember that a visually impaired individual may have greater trouble than others tracing the origin of the situation.
Advanced sensors, such as those that can receive audio communications, can fill in the blanks. Each bedroom, as well as other areas of the house, must have a smoke detector in accordance with construction requirements. Identifying the offending detector is often an exhausting task. A voice-activated smoke alarm can notify its owner of the specific location where smoke has been detected.
Amazon makes it possible to use suitable sensors as action-initiating triggers for Alexa routines. So, any phrase can be announced on an Alexa speaker by integrating a compatible sensor into an Alexa routine. The master bathroom toilet, for instance, can sound an alarm if a leak detector installed behind the commode detects water escaping from the tank.
A wide variety of auditory messages can be triggered by virtual sensors that are included in some Alexa-compatible smart home hubs.
How Safe Are Smart Home Devices for the Visually Impaired?
There are downsides to this technology, just as there are to anything else. Theft of sensitive information, such as passwords and bank account numbers, is a major worry. This is a real worry, but it is getting the attention it deserves.
For instance, computers can now recognize people just by taking a picture of their face, thanks to facial recognition technology. Because of this, it is essential that smart home technologies such as switches, cameras, and mobile apps be safe and accessible for all users, including those with special needs.
Moreover, it is also important for the loved ones of the visually impaired to check on them every now and then. They should also check that there has been no security breach and everything is running normally.
Although smart home devices are an excellent help, they do need human intervention sometimes to check everything is in order.
All in All
Smart technology enables the disabled to lead a more independent life and do daily tasks at the same level as those without impairments. Smart technologies give a big boost to self-esteem and allow people to live independently and with dignity by reducing their reliance on family and/or caregivers.
Home automation apps for smartphones and tablets have made life easier for people who are physically limited. It’s more than just a handy tool for the visually impaired and those with other impairments as well. Thanks to advancements in technology, we can now have the freedom to live as we like within the comfort of our own homes.