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This topic is for feedback on Mumsnet product tests. If you're a company / brand and would like to run a product test on Mumsnet email

Do you or your child have visual impairment or reading difficulties? Would you like to test an OrCam assistive technology device?

(42 Posts)
PoppyMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 15-May-17 11:03:44

OrCam Technologies has asked us to find 6 UK Mumsnetters or their family members to test an OrCam assistive technology device to help with reading difficulties and visual impairment.

Here’s what OrCam have to say: “OrCam has introduced the world’s most advanced artificial vision innovation to the UK, which is enabling a growing number of people with vision or reading difficulties to regain their independence. OrCam discreetly communicates visual information by utilizing a small, intuitive smart camera mounted on the wearer’s eyeglass frame. The unobtrusive and lightweight device relays text and other visual information by audio, in real time, through a tiny speaker positioned toward the ear.

With OrCam, any printed text, from any surface – newspapers, books, computer and smartphone screens, restaurant menus, labels on supermarket products and street signs – becomes instantly accessible. OrCam's assistive technology helps support the learning process of children who read at a slower pace than others in their class as well as adults with reading difficulties resulting from dyslexia.

Additional functionality for people who are blind or visually impaired include the announcement of family members, friends and co-workers as they approach the OrCam wearer. Furthermore, favourite supermarket items, credit cards and denominations of pound notes are seamlessly recognized.”

Selected testers will receive a personalised session with a certified OrCam Trainer who will teach them how to easily and intuitively incorporate the device’s technology into their daily life.

Once they have received the product to test, testers will be asked to continually provide feedback on the thread about how they are using OrCam and the impact of the device upon their daily activities. The testing period is four weeks.

Following the testing period, testers will have the option of purchasing the device at a significant discount.

If you're interested in signing up, please click here.

Thanks and good luck!


Standard T&Cs apply

CormorantDevouringTime Wed 17-May-17 21:39:01

How intriguing. Looking forward to reading how testers get on.

However, can you please proof read that title?

anon1987 Wed 17-May-17 21:55:32

Amazing I have just applied. I saw this a while ago and thought how lovely it would be for a couple of my family members to be able to use one. It would improve their lives a great deal.

WannaBe Wed 17-May-17 22:44:45

I'm intrigued that they're still looking for testers. I originally encountered this product in 2014 and although it seems that they have improved it somewhat of late it appears it hasn't yet fully made it to the market.

It's worth bearing in mind that the "discounted" cost is around £1800 so if testers do get on with it it won't be a cheap product which they will be just able t to integrate without significant outlay on their part.

Voice0fReason Wed 17-May-17 23:30:59

I have one. It is very good but it really depends what you need it for. I have found it to be good at some things and rubbish at others.
I don't think it is particularly suitable for young children and you need some sight to be able to use it.
Not cheap but definitely worth it for some.

PickAChew Wed 17-May-17 23:31:31

IIRC, I think @hellokittymania uses a product like this. I might have remembered wrongly.

oxcat1 Thu 18-May-17 13:03:52

I have applied on behalf of my niece, who is 6 and registered blind as a result of a brain tumour.
Do you think she will be too young to use it properly? She has a little sight in one eye.

Voice0fReason Thu 18-May-17 22:46:15

@oxcat1 I personally think that 6 is too young, especially if she only has a very small amount of sight.
You have to hold your head still and positioned just right for it to pick up the text. You need to be able to see where the text is that you want to read so it is no good if you have no or virtually no sight. It attempts to read everything, regardless of whether it is readable, so I think young children would find it frustrating as it reads nonsense to you.

WannaBe Fri 19-May-17 16:20:53

Yes six is definitely too young. FWIW I do no some with no or very little sight who are currently testing, but tbh the price is so astronomical that regardless of who is testing it most people won't be able to afford it anyway.

ASDismynormality Sat 20-May-17 08:05:31

This is something that could really help my son as he's dyslexic- bit I wouldn't want him to gain independence with the product and then have it taken away at the end of the testing period.

foamybananasweets Sat 20-May-17 08:20:39

I am registered blind but have some sight. I take photos of text I can't read and enlarge it on my phone. No way i could afford even a discounted price for this. I know developing products costs a lot of money, but you will struggle to make it back from your target market unfortunately as we are being financially squeezed in every direction by the current government sadangry

Voice0fReason Sat 20-May-17 12:52:34

I do sympathise about the cost, I was very fortunate to have an employer who was happy to fund it for me because it's useful for me at work. I was previously scanning documents to the computer so I could enlarge them on screen. That was a bit of a palaver.
I also use my phone to photograph and enlarge but my phone screen is more limited in size and I can't photograph all the company documents that I need to read.

Hopefully, this will become more widely available on loan through the low vision clinics.

asonisagirlsbestfriend Sat 20-May-17 22:44:04

Really really need this for my son

Voice0fReason Sat 20-May-17 22:54:51

How old is your son @asonisagirlsbestfriend

stayathomegardener Sat 20-May-17 23:27:29

This would be perfect for my DD 18 to trial before she goes to uni.
Dyslexia and Irlens have made reading very slow and difficult and will continue to do so despite support and special glasses.

Daisymay2 Sun 21-May-17 09:36:36

Stay at home gardener the disabled students assessment will offer your daughter quite a lot of help and equipment. I am not Sure if they have to contribute to the equipment cost now. The assessor that saw DS2 was excellent, the assessment will based on his ed psychologist report. It is worth making the appointment ASAP as it takes time to get things into place.

youarenotkiddingme Sun 21-May-17 10:19:00

Is this not the same type of product as a reading pen?

My ds has asd and literacy difficulties which include slow reading speed and fluency. He also has comprehension difficulties so I'm not sure having it read in his ear would help!

asonisagirlsbestfriend Sun 21-May-17 10:35:25

He's 4 and has nystagmus coloboma and strabatimus he really could benefit from trying this I just hope he gets selected to try it out

Voice0fReason Sun 21-May-17 14:16:35

@youarenotkiddingme you can't read a street sign, or a sign in a shop, or the information cards in museums with a reading pen.
It can capture 2 pages from a novel and read it to me without having to hold the book.

@asonisagirlsbestfriend I don't believe this is suitable for a 4 year old. I personally wouldn't give it to a child until they were at least 10, and even then, it would depend on the child.

youarenotkiddingme Sun 21-May-17 14:32:17

Ah ha - thanks voice. That actually sounds very useful.

I've been looking at scanner pens for my ds as I think it will help with the whole picking out key features bit and will just read that to him.

asonisagirlsbestfriend Sun 21-May-17 17:47:28

Well still every child is different he has got vision he just can't focus for long periods

childmaintenanceserviceinquiry Sun 21-May-17 18:36:47

I was interested for a severely dyslexic child, but again would not like the idea of him being given a helpful tool whch is then taken away. So I wont be applying. Hope the test goes well.

SarahGraceMc Sun 21-May-17 19:28:17

Sounds really good my DC is 10 and has difficulties with reading, though as PPs have said I wouldn't like to use it and for it to be taken away again and the discounted price is very very expensive

Voice0fReason Sun 21-May-17 21:48:42

@asonisagirlsbestfriend I understand nystagmus, I also know very well how this device works. It's not quite as smooth plain sailing as the video implies. There is no way I would give it to a 4-year-old. It would cause more confusion and frustration than it would ever help. You need to hold your head in the right position, keep it still, be just at the right distance from the text to ensure you pick all the text up, identify when it hasn't picked up all the text. Some words it just reads incorrectly - you need a level of understanding to identify that. You need to keep your hands out of the way while it is reading to you. As an adult, I love it, but it is completely unsuitable for any 4-year-old.

And at 4 years old, he needs to learn to read, not be read to. He needs large print. This device would get in the way of his learning.

Please disregard this as a device that would be helpful for your child at the moment, it would do more harm than good.

Llamacorn Mon 22-May-17 01:00:05

Wow I really need this for my youngest dd who is 8, would she be an ok age for it?
I honestly didn't know such a thing exists! My dds have a rare genetic disorder, mainly affecting their eyes. My youngest dd also is dyslexic and has asd, we have been struggling with touch typing because of her eyesight. I'll definitely be filling in the form tomorrow and hoping to be picked!

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