IIT Kanpur to launch haptic smartwatch for blind, visually impaired

The haptic smartwatch comes in two variants and has 12 touch-sensitive hour markers arranged over the dial face, and the users will be required to scan the markers with their fingers.

New Delhi: The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur on Friday announced to launch “haptic smartwatch for the blind and visually impaired” in association with Ambrane India Private Limited for mass manufacturing and sales of the smartwatch.

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The haptic smartwatch comes in two variants and has 12 touch-sensitive hour markers arranged over the dial face, and the users will be required to scan the markers with their fingers.

“We believe that this watch will make a great social impact by enabling the visually impaired and blind to make seamless use of this technology for everyday usage,” Prof. Abhay Karandikar, Director of IIT Kanpur, said in a statement.

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“The watch will soon be commercialized by Ambrane India and will be available in the market at an affordable price. This development is a testament to IIT Kanpur’s commitment to promoting inclusivity through novel technology development,” he added.

Moreover, this watch is a fusion of tactile and vibration watches.

This watch eliminates the fragility of the tactile watch and the complexity of vibration watches that generate more than 20 pulses, creating a watch that is easy to operate, private, affordable, and robust.

Further, the use of innovative haptic icons makes navigating the menu simple, and a simple gesture like a double tap can open a specific health monitoring app.

These numbers are communicated in a similar way as the time.

The smartwatch comes equipped with features such as a heart rate monitor, step counter, hydration reminder and a timer that users can set using a simple gesture.

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