From picture-based communication systems to finding accessible locations, you can make life a little easier with these assistive apps for disabled people.
This Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) app provides a picture-based communication system for people with speech challenges. It comes pre-loaded with more than 180 icons; and you can make your own icons to expand the built-in library, record your own voice and even print matching picture cards.
Ideal for non-verbal people, people in the autism spectrum, stroke victims and anyone who struggles with communication; and with its $60 price point, Voice4u AAC is much more affordable than expensive standalone units.
It’s worth noting that the same company also makes Voice4u TTS (Text-to-Speech), which reads what you type in your choice of natural-sounding voices. The app can even read words from a photograph with ORC technology. Currently, Voice4u TTS is only available for iOS devices and costs $40.
This AAC app was created to be a daily communication tool for people with speech challenges. Users communicate by tapping symbols from the apps 10,000+-word library – but such an extensive vocabulary isn’t meant to be overwhelming. In fact, Proloquo2Go was developed based on research that suggests 200 to 400 words make up 80 percent of our core vocabulary. The app features customizable vocabulary levels so it’s appropriate for a range of fine motor and visual skills, and even has a progressive language feature that can help people extend their vocabularies.
Proloquo2Go has more than 100 free natural-sounding text-to-speech voices and 25,000 built-in symbols, and you can add your own photos. At $250, it’s a bit expensive for an app; but it’s still more affordable than standalone devices.
Currently available for iOS devices (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Apple Watch).
This app connects blind and low-vision people with sighted volunteers through live video calls. The sighted volunteers assist with guided problem-solving. For example, it can be used to help find lost or dropped items, describing pictures, reading labels, shopping at stores, and navigating new places.
This app helps disabled drivers find and get assistance refueling their vehicles. Refueling can be challenging for people who use wheelchairs and other disabled drivers, but FuelService aims to solve that challenge by showing you which gas stations have attendants who can help.
Use the app to search for and choose a gas station from a list or map. The app will then contact the gas station to see if they can assist you. Once you arrive, the app notifies the attendant you have arrived and shows you how many minutes it will be before they come out to help. It even includes a ratings system to help you choose gas stations that have provided good assistance to others.
Powered by the OpenSubtitles database, this app lets you view subtitles on your iOS device while watching TV or at the movies – which makes it one of the most entertaining apps for disabled people. The app supports more than 20 languages and is synchronized with whatever is on your screen – simply search for the program or movie you’re watching, then press play to start.
Since most TVs, DVDS, Blu-Rays and streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video offer built-in subtitle functionality, this app might be best used in the movie theater – provided you can use it without disturbing other moviegoers.
Subtitles Viewer costs $9.99 and is available for iOS devices only.
Access Now is a community-driven app that pinpoints accessible locations on an interactive map. You can look up places like restaurants, museums and attractions and view their accessibility ratings: accessible, partially accessible, patio access only and not accessible. You can also rate locations and even add your own to help others in the community.
Have you used any apps for disabled people? We’d love to hear about it! Please, contact us and share your experience.