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Oftel releases good practice guide for mobile industry

Lists guidelines for new handsets for the disabled and elderly
Written by Jo Best, Contributor

Lists guidelines for new handsets for the disabled and elderly

Oftel has today launched a new guide to ensure the mobile industry addresses the needs of some of the most underrepresented customers groups – the elderly and disabled. The snappily titled The Good Practice Guide for Service Delivery for Disabled and Elderly Customers in the UK details ways for mobile operators to make their products more accessible, including ensuring handsets are compatible with hearing aids, making phones with larger fonts and adjustable screen contrast and making phones larger and easier to grip. Peter Waller, deputy director of telecommunications, said at the launch: "Service providers have a important role to ensure the necessary special features are available on mobile handsets. Oftel welcomes the positive steps the mobile industry has taken by publishing this guide on the features that must be available on handsets designed for people with special needs." While the guide may seem like a nod to political correctness, the potentially lucrative market is so far largely untapped and Japanese phone operator DoCoMo has already made a mint by offering handsets produced specifically for disabled and elderly customers.
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