Toyota is working on a wearable that helps blind and visually impaired people better navigate indoor spaces.
While guide dogs and canes are effective aiding in every day life, Toyota’s Project Blaid device wants to fill the gaps by providing users with more information about their surroundings. Large spaces that are multi-floored, like malls, airports and so forth aren’t as easy to get around if you need to go somewhere specific.
Indoor mapping, object identification and facial recognition will be integrated to make use of the cameras that Blaid is equipped with. The wearable sits on the shoulders like a horseshoe pillow and communicates information through speakers and vibration motors where users will also be to interact with the device through voice recognition and buttons.
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With cars on-boarding connected kits like Android Auto and Apple Carplay, or augmented reality, Toyota’s certainly taken a different approach to wearables. In general, the company has kept its cars as well, cars, instead of technological hubs involving wearables. But if Blaid works, it may be far more useful and practical than connected cars – and we may see more wearables from Toyota.
For now, Project Blaid is still only a prototype but we’re interested in seeing how this plays out in the future.