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Fashion Wearable Technology: NaviGo

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For our wearable technology project we proposed NaviGo an assistive wearable technology (classified, in this case, as a high tech device) for the visually impaired that complements their instinct and auditory sense. The device can be connected to computers and uses a tactile braille display that sends information to the wearer in the form of simplified commands.

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Fashion Wearable Technology: NaviGo

  1. 1. GFE601: Technology in Fashion Wearable Technology – NaviGo NaviGo – Assistive Wearable for the People with Visual Impairments Arpita Bhagwat Aleksandra Nazintseva Shraddha Kutty Ryu Wakabayashi Riti Mishra
  2. 2. Table of Contents Introduction...............................................................................................................................................2 Objective...................................................................................................................................................2 Target Market............................................................................................................................................3 Industry Review........................................................................................................................................6 Benefits and Characteristics......................................................................................................................8 Competitors...............................................................................................................................................8 Product Design Decisions.......................................................................................................................10 Cost of Manufacturing............................................................................................................................14 Marketing................................................................................................................................................15 Disposal of Product.................................................................................................................................16 Problems and Solutions...........................................................................................................................17 Future Applications.................................................................................................................................17 Appendix.................................................................................................................................................18
  3. 3. Introduction Assistive Technology is described as any item, piece of equipment or product system whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified or customized that is used to increase, maintain or improve the functional capabilities of a person with disability or disabilities.These may be broadly classified as: High tech, mid tech, low tech, no tech. NaviGo is an assistive wearable technology (classified, in this case, as a high tech device) for the visually impaired that complements their instinct and auditory sense. The device can be connected to computers and uses a tactile braille display that sends information to the wearer in the form of simplified commands. We realized there is a number of (crowdfunded) software and programs developed, that when put together, could make an adaptive person even more self-reliant. Some features include; • Voice recognition / command • GPS - Information is translated into symbols • Indoor navigation using haptic feedback (sensors that measure distance and provides feedback to the wearer so they can navigate themselves) • Gesture recognition • OCR (Optical Character Recognition) • Emergency command These are some basic forms of technology that already exist. The product is to be as sensitive as possible with respect to function, design, terminology and ability. Objective To enhance the emotional well-being of the visually impaired consumer and enable them to participate wholly in society. We have drawn inspiration from existing smartphone based application programs such as Say Text, that allows the user to snap photos of text they want to read, such as a restaurant menu or label, and hear it prompted aloud; even smartphone-based GPS programs that alert blind users to nearby cafes or other points of interest are available in the market. By integrating these application concepts to our device, the visually impaired wearer can go about his or her daily life with little to no hindrance with a variety of social options. Thus, increasing their independence and allowing them to be socially more participatory. Especially given the commercialization of assistive technology ex. Siri and VoiceOver, the device would be welcomed in the wearable market.
  4. 4. Target Market Overview: Visual Impairment refers to a decrease in vision that cannot be corrected by use of glasses of contact lenses. People with vision that is worse than 20/200 with glasses or contact lenses are considered legally blind in most states in the United States. Blindness has many causes. In the United States, the leading causes are: • Accidents or injuries to the surface of the eye (chemical burns or sports injuries) • Diabetes • Glaucoma • Macular degeneration In 1934, the American Medical Association adopted the following definition of blindness: “Central visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with corrective glasses or central visual acuity of more than 20/200 if there is a visual field defect in which the peripheral field is contracted to such an extent that the widest diameter of the visual field subtends an angular distance no greater than 20 degrees in the better eye.” ‘The Americans with Disabilities 2010 report categorizes types of disabilities into communicative, physical, and mental domains according to a set of criteria described in the report. People who are blind or have difficulty seeing are grouped into the communicative disability domain. While the characteristics of individuals with disabilities in a domain may be heterogeneous, the domains may group individuals with some common experiences. Because people can have more than one type of disability, they too may be identified as having disabilities in multiple domains. In the report disability among children aged less than 15 years are not included.’ ‘The population of people with disabilities inhabit a distinct position in the U.S. economy, both for their contributions to the marketplace and roles in government policies and programs. People with disabilities bring unique sets of skills to the workplace,
  5. 5. enhancing the strength and diversity of the U.S. labor market (U.S. Department of Labor, “Building an Inclusive Workforce: A Four-Step Reference Guide to Recruiting, Hiring, & Retaining Employees with Disabilities”). In addition, they make up a significant market of consumers, representing more than $200 billion in discretionary spending and spurring technological innovation and entrepreneurship (U.S. Department of Labor, “Diverse Perspectives: People with Disabilities Fulfilling Your Business Goals”). People with disabilities also often rely on various government interventions to maintain their participation in the community.’ (Americans with Disabilities: 2010, Matthew W. Brault) Disability Statistics, American Community Survey (2013): The number of non-institutionalized males or females, ages 4 and under through 20, all races, regardless of ethnicity, with all education levels in the United States who reported a visual disability in 2013. Prevalence: • Total: 694,300 (2.4%) • Girls: 333,500 (2.3%) • Boys: 360,700 (2.3%) (Erickson, W., Lee, C., von Schrader, S. (2015). Disability Statistics from the 2013 American Community Survey (ACS). Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute (EDI). Retrieved September 9, 2015, from www.disabilitystatistics.org.) Prevalence of Visual Disability: The number of non-institutionalized, male or female, ages 16 through 75+, all races, regardless of ethnicity, with all education levels in the United States reported to have a visual disability in 2013. • Total (all ages): 7,327,800 (2.3%) • Total (16 to 75+): 6,846,000 (8.7%) • Women: 3,793,300 (9.3%) • Men: 3,052,700 (8.1%) • Age 18 to 64: 3,805,600 (1.9%) • Age 65 and older: 2,966,300 (6.8%) (https://nfb.org/blindness-statistics) Psychographics: • Adaptive • Progressive thinking • Already tech savvy • High School Diploma Educated Demographic Statistics: • 79% White; 12% Black; 6% Hispanic
  6. 6. • (This government survey categorizes race and ethnicity as Hispanic, non- Hispanic white, non-Hispanic black, Asian or Pacific Islander, and other.) • 49% are married • Average education is 11.4 years Gender: • 58% are men between 18-44 years • 61% are women over the age of 75 Marriage and household: • Blind men are more likely to be married than blind women, regardless of age • As blind men age, they are more likely to be living with a spouse • As blind women age, they are more likely to be living alone or with a relative Location: • 78% live in an urban area • 35% live in the South • Rural and urban blind adults do not differ in terms of age or sex Poverty: • 1 in 5 live in poverty (19%) • 19% are currently employed Family Income and Education: Annual family income ranged from between $5,000 to more than $50,000, with almost equal distribution in all income categories. Blind Adults Living Alone: One out of every four (26%) blind adults lives alone, but the patterns are different for men and women of different ages. Blind women are more likely to live alone as they age. Only 7 % of blind women between the ages of 18-44 live alone, but the percentage more than doubles to 16% between the ages of 45-64. In the 65-74 age group, more than one-third lives alone. More than half (52 %) of blind women 75 and older live alone. In contrast, approximately 20% of blind men live alone at all ages, falling to 16 % for those over 75. (http://center4research.org/medical-care-for-adults/disabilities/blind-adults-in-america- their-lives-and-challenges/)
  7. 7. Industry Review Our project will be a part of the healthcare and medical applications category since it will assist the visually impaired. It is deeply related to health care and we could garner support from medical personnel. The current global market for IT outsourcing is USD 34.5 billion and is estimated to be 68.3 billion in 2020, which indicates that the market has a growth potential to double in the next four years. (http://www.prweb.com/releases/2015/12/prweb13118163.htm) Wearable technology in the global market is estimated at USD 5.8 billion in 2018, and health care and medical applications at USD 2000 million as shown below (Market Growth Trends: Wearable Technology End Use). According to Transparency Market Research (TMR), the Healthcare and Medical area is predicted to have the largest growth (Fitness, Infotainment, Industrial and Military). This indicates that the market we are entering is expanding and has great potential.
  8. 8. According to the TMR, in our product (Handing and Portability and Real Time and Integrated Data) are marked both highest for impact in adoption and buying decision. The following graph shows further segments in the categories of Healthcare and Medical, Fitness and Wellness, Infotainment, and Industrial and Military. (http://www.wearabletechworld.com/topics/from-the-experts/articles/323855-wearable- technology-next-mobility-market-booming.htm)
  9. 9. Benefits and Characteristics NaviGO will significantly help blind people; the main benefit being easy navigation outdoors and indoors by wearing our wristband. The device has 4 mini sensors and a voice operated GPS receiver, all to act as both - a ‘walking stick’ or cane and a mapping system. All information about directions and obstacles will be relayed to the wearer via a special earpiece that will be connected to the device. The user will be able to make emergency phone calls by using two fingers to tap thrice on the display. This function will be programmable (during setup), so it will be possible to choose a phone number from their contact lists. The device will track biometrics data and send a signal to 911 services if there is an abnormal change in user’s health metrics. Moreover, tactile braille display will also help users to check directions and time on the small display of the wristband. The design of the device was inspired by the latest fashion trends and is inconspicuous, so that people without disabilities would find it interesting as well. NaviGO will be a one of its kind in the market. All devices that currently exist are still in prototyping stage and are very expensive. The unique selling point of the product is its affordability thereby widening its reach in the market. Competitors There are a lot of navigation/ scanning devices, such as: walking sticks or canes, hand disks, wristbands, glasses and headsets. But for the comparison of pros and cons we decided to consider only devices that apply to wearable technology segment – our direct and indirect competitors. Function Navigation Demands of the Body Protection Cannot be used for sports, Water- resistant, Non radiactive Antropometry 14 - 45 years old Ergonomics Movements Non bulky, Doesn't hinder wrist/hand movements Thermo-Psychological regulation N/A Psychological Considerations Increase convenience of day-to-day life, Enhancing, Complementary to person's abilities Demands of the Activity Duration of the Activity up to 48 hours Safety Maps are stored in the device Range of Likely Factors that are dependent on the device
  10. 10. In the table below we enlisted benefits NaviGO offers in comparison to other existing alternatives; Function / Device Eyeronman Microsoft Handset Munivo VI A Navigation Glasses Touch & Go NaviGO Navigation Obstacles only + Obstacles only + + + + Voice Control - + - + + + + Voice Assistance - - - + + + + Tactile Braille Display - - - - - + + Emergency Call - - - - - - + Biometrics Track - - - - - - + Time - - - - - - + Inconspicuous - - - - - - + (Table 1.1) According to Table 1.1, Eyeronman (Lewis), Microsoft Handset (BBC) and Munivo (Burns, Hand Map For the Blind) provide only one or two functions that NaviGO offers. Thus, these devices are indirect competitors. On the other hand, VIA, Navigation Glasses and Touch & Go are more likely to be considered as similar devices to NaviGO or are direct competitors. VIA (Visually Impaired Assistant) is a pair of hand-centric devices that help the blind to navigate. The device has two hand pieces and use VMD (Video Motion Detection technologies), 4 mini cameras, and a voice operated GPS receiver. It uses two different vibration mechanisms to guide the user away from obstacles and toward their final bespoken destination. The device is charged via a wirelessly functioning mat. (Burns, Visually Impaired with Fine Hands) Navigation Glasses is a pair of special glasses teamed with an earpiece. It helps the sight impaired to visualize their surroundings. Sensors in the glasses pick up the elements around the person and kind of guides them with auditory feedback. A strategically placed microphone allows the user to communicate with the device and get accurate real-time feedback. (Seth, Touch Freely Navigation) Touch & Go is a navigation system for the blind folks to make them autonomous in the “outside world”. The device includes a hand gadget and an earpiece. The system is a wearable navigator with a tactile display that shows the directions as a relief map. (Seth, Touch Feely Navigation) (See Appendix 1 for links to websites of other available competition)
  11. 11. Product Design Decisions Our product is an elastomer wristband with a tactile braille display. Tactile braille display displays time as well as provides simple directions. It provides auditory output as well by means of an earpiece. It has a sensory range of 50 meters. It will have swipe and tap motions that can be programmed according to the needs of the user (For e.g. Double Tap to make your phone call your emergency contact). The end of the band will have a USB so that the watch can be plugged into a PC so as to take advantage of the open source operating system. The band will also have a simple biometrics tracking system that will notify emergency services in case of sudden change in biometrics. The device will be water resistant and shockproof. It will have a volume control button on the bottom. Flat Drawing:
  12. 12. Aesthetics: It will be closed like a cuff so it will have elasticity on the center of the band. Fitbit and Apple Watch bands are made from the same material. The color and texture are inspired by the WGSN trend Infusion of minimal lines, flat warm colors and metallic finishes. Electronics and Computing Elements: • The device will have four sensors facing all four directions. They will emit laser beams to create a 3D image of its surroundings and project that onto the tactile braille display. (Similar to the one mounted on top of Google Cars) • Built in GPS system (Google Maps) • Motherboard with memory chip, Bluetooth chip, battery, OS. • Volume button input and output • Voice input and auditory output • Smaller version of tactile braille display (http://www.damngeeky.com/2014/04/24/20680/anagraphs-electronic-braille- reader-hooks-mobile-devices.html)
  13. 13. Identification of Design Requirements: Visual impairment, also known as vision impairment or vision loss, is a decreased ability to see to a degree that causes problems not fixable by usual means, such as glasses. The term blindness is used for complete or nearly complete vision loss. Visual impairment may cause people difficulties with normal daily activities such as driving, reading, socializing, and walking. This assistive device is meant for everyday use. A watch is something that people wear every day without even realizing that it is on their wrist. Which is why we decided to make it a wristband. The design has to be such that it does not interfere in day-to-day activities and is light enough to be worn for the whole day. It would have to water resistant to survive rainy/snowy weather as well as any splashes from washing hands. The size has to be enough for easy interpretation of the tactile braille display but not so big that it becomes bulky. It has to be easy to put on so that the visually impaired person does not have trouble wearing it. Fashion Vs. Regulation: Our product will be extensively tested before we put it out in the market. However, buying NaviGo will require the user to agree to terms and conditions that will not hold us liable for any accidents. We can guarantee that wearing the product will not cause any skin reactions. Any data recorded with biometrics or Google maps will not be sold to any third party. However, we will use the data to improve user experience based on usage statistics.
  14. 14. Cost of Manufacturing An extremely rough estimate of costing has been made for the purpose of this prototype. The costing is based on the assumption that the laser sensor system used in Google Cars has been condensed into a smaller version that is cheap and easy to program for. This prototype also assumes that the one-time cost of developing the software will be $25,000. It also uses the cost of manufacturing the Apple watch as a reference. Cost of Individual Components: Elastomer band ($8 per kg) = $0.10 Sensors ($10 each) = $40 Motherboard (including all chips and battery) = $10 Tactile Display = $15 Charger =$3 Earpiece = $4 Packaging = $5 TOTAL COST OF MANUFACTURING = $77.1 (Source: Wholesale prices from Alibaba.com) For a 60% profit margin, the product has to be sold for $192.75. Thus, we can have a retail price of $200.
  15. 15. Marketing Overview: The accessibility, comfort and sentiments of the visually impaired people were taken into consideration while designing the marketing plan. Besides targeting the visually impaired we also plan to reach out to their friends and family. This assistive technology aims to enhance the quality of life of the blind. To make sure that we reach out to as many people as we can, we will be using the following strategies: 1. Website: The website will be completely accessible for visually impaired people. Blind visitors will most likely be using assistive technology like screen readers, refreshable braille displays and digital screen magnification, so we will make sure that our site is tech- friendly. We will refer to the information and tutorials provided by The American Foundation for the Blind and WebAIM before designing the website, to make sure that our website is welcoming for people with low or no vision. Navigation is to be made as efficient, simple and logical as possible, because top-heavy navigation forces visually impaired people to sit through long descriptions of menus before reaching the actual content of the page. We will include appropriate ALT and TITLE tags for images, as screen readers use these to interpret image data. 2. Promotion: Our product will be exhibited at different conferences held by AFB, American Council for the Blind and the National Federation for the Blind, Closing the Gap and the Northridge Conferences. The product may also be exhibited at ophthalmological conferences and can be promoted via pharmaceutical representatives to ophthalmologists themselves. We may target younger demographic by making aware our presence across school (blind school) fairs to display our product to parents and schoolteachers. Brochures (in braille and type) will be distributed at all the places of promotion (conferences, senior citizens’ organizations, special schools, rehab centers, hospitals and doctors’ offices). We will send press releases to publications dealing with education, health, technology and specific publications for the visually impaired. 3. Packaging: The packaging of our product will be minimalistic and hassle-free. It will consist of braille-embossed paperboard, fold-flat box design and our logo (in type and braille), laminated by a thin layer of polystyrene plastic to prevent abrasion. Color palette will remain true to the design – white and (insert) representing today’s tech-savvy consumer and creating an inclusive statement. Information will be provided in 3 different formats - braille, type or large-print and a computer disk (CD). We are serving the blind and visually impaired market and we understand that accessible documentation is part of the price of doing business with this particular segment.
  16. 16. Clear, easy-to-follow instructions will be available in a variety of formats on set up and usage, with the objective to keep as self-explanatory to the blind wearer without having to ask for outside assistance (although it will be provided on request). An audio CD will be included with a manual on opening of the box so that our consumers will have access to it immediately. The CD will have braille in matte to indicate the correct side to insert it, we are fully aware that now-a-days the use of CDs have decreased dramatically but blind or visually impaired people most certainly have access to CD players or have this feature in their laptops as they heavily rely on audio materials. We firmly believe that people who have learning disabilities may also benefit from listening to auditory information. 4. Advertisements: We will include blind actors and models in our marketing materials. It is not enough to simply use actors pretending to be blind, which can seem disrespectful. We understand the fact that they and their friends and family members naturally want individuals who can relate to living with visual impairments and we respect that. We will advertise on Websites for visually impaired people like, WebAIM and AFB. We will also sell and advertise our product on assistive technology online stores like Enablemart, Infogrip and Enabling Devices. We will also advertise on local television and radio to reach out to as many people as possible. (See Appendix 2 for list of websites used to develop marketing strategy) Disposal of Product We take sustainability very seriously. Electronic products are made from valuable resources and materials, including metals, plastics, and glass, all of which require energy to mine and manufacture. Every piece of NaviGo must be recycled so that we can conserve our natural resources and avoid air and water pollution, greenhouse gas emissions caused by manufacturing virgin materials. Damaged goods can be returned to us and will be dissected for reuse and disposal. We will send the frames in bulk to our manufacturing units where they will be directly recycled by melting and remaking new pieces. We will partner up with an e-waste recycling company like “All Green” and provide them electronic parts in bulk for disposal/recycling. Recycling these electronic parts will keep toxic materials out of the environment. Small electronics like NaviGo contain metals such as lead, mercury, cadmium and beryllium. They also contain hazardous materials such as brominated flame-retardants. All of these can have negative effects on the environment. When these materials are placed in a landfill they can leech into the soil and water and be released into the air. Recycling is the key to protect our environment and keep these metals and hazardous materials out of landfills. We are committed to protecting the environment and give 100% assurance that the damaged pieces will not reach landfills. We also want our customers to feel good about the fact that they are being responsible citizens by taking this small step and hope they will be encouraged to make recycling an integral part of their lives. (See Appendix 2.1 for websites used)
  17. 17. Problems and Solutions The first and foremost problem that we would face is market penetration. People can be skeptical and unsure about our product and we need to build up a brand image of trust and confidence. Litigation will also be a problem as there might be people who will try to sue us if something goes wrong. While we will have FDA approval, we must take care to not across as uncaring and give due diligence if an actual case of negligence comes up. Because it is an electronic product, malfunctions are bound to happen. We will provide a three year warranty for certain malfunctions not caused by fault of the user. Another problem is the inevitable knock-offs that will start appearing in the market as our production will mostly happen in China. These products might harm our image as they might not meet the same safety and quality standards. We should take adequate steps such as filing patents and trademarks to protect our intellectual property. Future Applications In the future, NaviGo can be made available in different countries. We can even perhaps collaborate with NGOs in those countries to make NaviGo more accessible to the visually impaired population of that country. This technology can be adapted other disabilities as well. With the advent of virtual and augmented reality, similar devices can be used in tandem with ocular implants.
  18. 18. Appendix Websites for Competition (1): http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-29913637 http://www.yankodesign.com/2011/02/10/hand-map-for-the-blind/ http://www.yankodesign.com/2010/04/22/gps-in-a-hand-disk/ http://www.yankodesign.com/2010/09/21/visually-impaired-with-fine-hands/ http://www.yankodesign.com/2012/06/15/all-round-vision-for-the-blind/ http://www.yankodesign.com/2010/09/20/3-d-braille-map-that-talks/ http://www.yankodesign.com/2009/08/03/touch-feely-navigation/ http://www.livescience.com/46236-vibrating-clothes-help-blind-navigate.html Websites for Marketing Strategy (2) http://paramountair.com/tips-for-marketing-to-the-visually-impaired/ http://blog.visual.ly/6-tips-marketing-visually-impaired-customers/ http://www.4hoteliers.com/features/article/6335 http://www.business2community.com/marketing/insights-into-marketing-to-the-blind-0380662 http://www.afb.org/info/living-with-vision-loss/using-technology/2001-a-technology- odyssey/finding-new-markets/1235 http://webaim.org/ https://nfb.org/images/nfb/publications/bm/bm00/bm0001/bm000120.htm http://www.sabeusa.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/A-Guide-to-Making-Documents- Accessible-to-People-Who-are-Blind-or-Visually-Impaired.pdf http://www.afb.org/default.aspx https://www.enablemart.com/vision/blindness https://enablingdevices.com/catalog http://www.infogrip.com/ Websites for Disposal Strategy (2.1) http://electronicrecyclers.com/ https://www.epa.gov/recycle/electronics-donation-and-recycling http://www.electronicstakeback.com/how-to-recycle-electronics/ https://eponline.com/articles/2013/01/04/proper-e-waste-disposal-and-environmental- sustainability.aspx?admgarea=ht.waste http://earth911.com/recycling-guide/how-to-recycle-small-electronics/ http://www.allgreenrecycling.com/recycle-small-electronics/

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