Honor announces PocketVision app for visually impaired

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Smartphone firm Honor has launched an app designed to aid the visually impaired by making text easier to read.

The PocketVision app uses artificial intelligence to filter text in different colours to improve contrast and make it easier to read, as well as having a zoom-in mode to enlarge words.

The app also features a text-to-speech mode, which uses optical character recognition technology to identify words in images and narrate them back to the user.

The app will be available to Honor and Huawei smartphone users via the AppGallery on their devices. Honor is a sub-brand of the Chinese phone giant.

The app will be available in English, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Chinese.

(Honor)
Negative Image mode in the PocketVision app, which alters contrast to make words easier to read (Honor)

Honor president George Zhao said:

“Harnessing the power of the Honor 20 Pro’s next-generation AI capabilities and pro-grade camera technology, PocketVision aims to level the playing field for the visually impaired, giving this community a portable, affordable solution to other reading aids on the market.

“In launching this app, we hope to create an enhanced reading experience for people all around the world, enabling a greater sense of independence and giving people with low vision the confidence to unlock their potential and pursue their passions.”

According to the World Health Organisation, around 1.3 billion people globally live with some form of visual impairment.

Robin Spinks, senior innovation and technology relationships manager at the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) said the app was crucially for helping those with sight issues to stay independent.

“Smartphone technology is playing an ever-increasing role in enabling everyday independence for blind and partially sighted people.

“PocketVision is an example of an exciting new category of apps that allow on-the-spot accessibility. Using this app, people with low vision have the ability to convert any text into a readable format, making the world a more accessible place, giving a greater sense of freedom and breaking down barriers to create a more inclusive society.”

Chris Price
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