January 09, 2012
Apps4Android Expands Mobile Offerings with the Launch of Five Free Accessibility Sprint ID Packs
ID packs assist individuals who cannot effectively read print on smartphones because of visual, physical, perceptual, developmental, cognitive or learning disability
HILLIARD, Ohio (BUSINESS WIRE), January 09, 2012 - Apps4Android, the world’s largest developer of accessibility-focused Android applications, has joined with Sprint to offer five accessibility-themed Sprint ID packs. The ID packs – available for download next week – were developed with the support of the U.S. Department of Education’s Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center (RERC) for Wireless Technologies.
The five ID packs are loaded with applications designed to accommodate the access needs of Sprint subscribers with print disabilities – people who are unable to read standard printed material, including on their smartphone, because of blindness, visual disability, physical limitations, organic dysfunction or dyslexia. Apps4Android designed the following Sprint ID packs, which are free to download with an Everything Data plan from Sprint on select Sprint ID-capable Android™ devices.
1. Accessibility ID from Apps4Android
This ID pack installs all the applications necessary to operate a smartphone without the need to see or read what is being displayed on the screen. It does so through the use of spoken, auditory and vibrational feedback. Applications include:
- Eyes-Free Shell: Turns a user’s smartphone into an eyes-free communication device by providing one-touch access to Android applications. Users can move their finger over the screen to explore and lift their finger up to run what they stopped on.
- Keyboard Tutor: Enables user to understand the layout of the buttons and keyboards on smartphones without being able to see them by pressing any key and hearing that key spoken aloud.
- Rock Lock: A simple, eyes-free music player that talks to you.
- Voice Search: Quickly search your phone, the Web and nearby locations by speaking, instead of typing. Call your contacts, get directions and control your phone with voice actions.
2. Accessible Entertainment ID from Apps4Android
This ID pack installs applications that read RSS news feeds and navigates users through YouTube entertainment content using high-quality text-to-speech voices. Applications include:
- IDEAL Self-Voicing News Feed Reader: An accessible news feed reader that reads organized collections of popular publication news feeds.
- IDEAL Self-Voicing YouTube Viewer: An accessible YouTube viewer that enables users to browse, listen to, and view organized collections of entertainment content through the use of high-quality text-to-speech voices.
3. Accessible Navigation ID from Apps4Android
This ID pack installs GPS-based applications that provide navigational assistance to users who are either driving or walking from one location to another. Applications include:
- Intersection Explorer: Speaks the layout of the streets and intersections in neighborhoods as users touch and drag their finger around the map. This helps blind and low-vision users get an understanding of a neighborhood before venturing out and while on the go.
- Talking Compass: Speaks your current heading and provides haptic feedback as you cross over any of the cardinal directions. Touch the screen to hear your heading. Stroke the screen up/down to adjust verbosity.
- WalkyTalky: An accessible navigation aid that periodically updates the status bar with your current location to the nearest street address. Ability to input a destination and directly launch Maps Navigation in walking directions mode.
4. Accessible Daily Living ID from Apps4Android
This ID pack installs applications designed to help individuals with print disabilities identify and locate items around the home and workplace. It also includes a powerful video magnification application for reading print materials more easily. Applications include:
- IDEAL Barcode Reader: A barcode-reading app that enables Android users to take a picture of standard UPC and QR codes. Reads the product description if a UPC is scanned; reads the embedded string for a QR code.
- IDEAL Barcode Maker: Enables users to create their own talking barcodes. It does this by enabling users to record a sound file and email the barcode to themselves. When printed and scanned using the phone that was used to create the recording, the recording plays.
- IDEAL Magnifier: Turns your Android device into a portable video magnifier. Comes with color filter options for grayscale, invert colors, etc. Image is real time – no lag. Volume +/- for zoom in/out; Search button for LED light; Menu button to bring up the color filter options.
5. Reading Made Easier ID from Apps4Android
This ID pack installs applications designed to help individuals read smartphone and Web-based documents, and surf the Web, more easily through the use of advanced navigation techniques and text-to-speech technology. Applications include:
- IDEAL AndroidVox Browser: A fully accessible browser.
- IDEAL ePub Creator: A utility for converting .doc, .docx and .pdf documents to ePubs, which can then be read using IDEAL ePub Reader.
- Speed Reader: Enables users to achieve very high reading speeds using a method called Rapid Serial Visual Presentation (RSVP). RSVP allows you to read faster by eliminating the time spent moving your eyes between words. With practice, reading speeds of 600 wpm are not uncommon.
Sprint ID devices include Samsung Epic™ 4G, Motorola PHOTON™ 4G, Samsung Conquer™ 4G, Sanyo Zio™, Samsung Transform™, LG Optimus S™ and Samsung Replenish™.
IDEAL Group, Inc. established Apps4Android in 2009 and continues to develop accessibility apps designed to accommodate the access needs of users with disabilities.
According to Steve Jacobs, president of IDEAL Group, Inc. and CEO, Apps4Android, “We are thrilled to be able to offer accessibility ID packs to Sprint’s valued subscribers, and we plan to release additional ID packs in the near future.”
Apps4Android, a subsidiary of IDEAL Group, Inc., is the world’s largest developer of accessibility-focused Android applications with nearly 3.5 million installations in 132 countries. Apps4Android’s mission is to enhance the independence, quality-of-life, education and health care of under-served communities, through the development, distribution, maintenance and support of fully-accessible, high-quality, cost-effective, mobile applications and infrastructures. You can learn more and visit Apps4Android at http://apps4android.org.
About the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center (RERC) for Wireless Technologies
Funded since 2001 by the U.S. Department of Education, the Wireless RERC (Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center) has become a recognized leader on issues and solutions related to the accessibility and usability of mobile wireless products and services by people with disabilities. The Wireless RERC's mission is to promote equitable access to and use of wireless technologies by people with disabilities and encourage the adoption of Universal Design in future generations of wireless devices and applications. You can learn more and visit the RERC for Wireless Technologies at http://www.wirelessrerc.org/.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 53 million customers at the end of 3Q 2011 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. The 2011 American Customer Satisfaction Index showed Sprint is the #1 most improved company in customer satisfaction, across all industries, over the last three years. Newsweek ranked Sprint No. 3 in its 2011 Green Rankings, listing it as one of the nation’s greenest companies, the highest of any telecommunications company. You can learn more and visit Sprint at http://sprint.com or http://facebook.com/sprint and http://www.twitter.com/sprint.