Persons living with visual impairment and blindness can now access M-PESA messages independently in braille format and conduct financial transactions with confidentiality following the introduction of DOT Braille Watch, a partnership between Safaricom and DOT incorporation.
The Dot Braille Watch is an innovation that is an equivalent of a smart gear that displays SMS notifications in braille hence enabling a visually impaired person to read.
Like any smart watch, the Dot Watch brings all the notifications from any app on a user’s smartphone directly to their wrist. It provides direct access to all the practical features a user needs such as Time and Date, Alarm Clock, Timer and Stopwatch and who is calling without seeing it. Every text message you receive on the smartphone is instantly translated to Braille and forwarded to a user’s Dot Watch. A user can connect it to their calendar app to receive reminders for upcoming appointments or weather app to adjust their wardrobe for a sunny day.
Dot Watch can display notifications from any app on your smartphone, including social networking and news. The Dot Watch unleashes it’s full potential to those who can read Braille and its Braille learning program is a simple, intuitive and entertaining way to learn and practice Braille letters and words.
The Dot Watch’s Tactile Mode works completely without knowing Braille and users can use it normally like any other smartwatch. Made from super light Aluminium, the Dot Watch weighs only 60 grams. The Dot Watch App can easily configurate many parameters of your watch. From refresh speed to choosing one of nine languages, including Chinese and Arabic.
“We are committed to the empowerment of persons with disability by facilitating the availability and affordability of assistive devices and technologies in line with our mission to transform lives. This partnership with DOT incorporation will make life easier for our visually impaired and blind customers through innovation,” said Sitoyo Lopokoiyit, Chief Officer, Financial Services at Safaricom.
Safaricom has doubled its efforts in creating an enabling environment for the Blind and visually impaired, through call optimization where the special trained call agents can directly receive call queries from this group of people.
Last year, Safaricom introduced the Interactive Voice Response (IVR), an M-PESA solution that would enable the visually impaired and blind customers to be in control of their M-PESA transactions.