New access app Blappy is making people happy

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Tuesday, 18 October 2016 11:03am

A new Bluetooth chat application for accessibility, called Blappy, aims to bring more people together. The app translates voice to text and text to voice, to enable people who are vision impaired to effectively communicate with those who are Deaf or hearing impaired.


Blappy running on three smartphones

Blappy running on three smartphones. Image from UC3M.

Blappy was created by CESyA, the Spanish Centre of Subtitling and Audio Description, with the support of UC3M's Audiovisual Accessibility Laboratory, which is part of the Center for Technologies for Disability & Dependence in UC3M’s Science Park in Madrid, Spain.

The tool was developed to facilitate everyday communication and allows two people, regardless of their language and whether or not they have a sensory disability, to have a conversation. It auto-detects the language in which each device is configured, and automatically translates conversations. It currently covers four languages - English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish... with more languages to be added in the future.

As Blappy uses Bluetooth, it’s intended for people who are physically located under 30 metres apart. The app features talkback adaptation to an Android device, speech to text voice recognition to write messages, text to speech voice message playback, high contrast with a view mode option in high contrast in all application screens, a zoom is available on all application screens, plua users can also customise chat options with a variety of different setting choices.

The finished Blappy app was developed by ABP Devitel and can be freely downloaded from the Google Play store. It requires Android 4.0.3 and up. The developers are also working on an iOS version and we'll keep you posted when that is available.

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