Using mobile tech to give a voice to those without, and location-aware at that

Summary:Some students in Toronto have developed an iPhone app that speaks for stroke victims and others unable to speak on their own. What may be a first for such uses, the MyVoice app is location-aware.

I love it when the mobile tech I enjoy can be used to help those in need, and I try to cover it whenever possible. Some students in Toronto have developed an iPhone app that speaks for stroke victims and others unable to speak on their own. This is not a new use for such technology, but the MyVoice app is location-aware and presents more intelligent talking points based on where the user is located.

The app lends a natural sounding voice to those unable to speak through user selection of common phrases. The phrases presented to the user for selection change intelligently based on where the user is located at the time. The app is smart enough to know when it is being used in a pharmacy for example, and will offer more appropriate phrases for the user to choose by tapping the screen.

The MyVoice app is free for download and the service will be free for 6 months. After that free period the service for MyVoice will be $30 monthly, which sounds expensive but is actually economical compared to medical appliances commonly in use. The developers plan on releasing an Android version in just a few weeks.

Mobile tech is rapidly being adopted in the healthcare segment, as mobile devices now possess sufficient computing power to handle more tasks. The mobile data networks have evolved too, and the combination of fast devices with fast networks will continue to drive the use of such technology in the healthcare space.

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Topics: Mobility, Telcos


James Kendrick has been using mobile devices since they weighed 30 pounds, and has been sharing his insights on mobile technology for almost that long. Prior to joining ZDNet, James was the Founding Editor of jkOnTheRun, a CNET Top 100 Tech Blog that was acquired by GigaOM in 2008 and is now part of that prestigious tech network. James' w... Full Bio

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