What is Feelif?
Feelif is introducing digital content to blind and visually impaired people. It is an adapted smartphone or a tablet, which uses a transparent relief grid and specialized software. It is designed to use visual information and more importantly vibrations, speech and sounds to illustrate what is beneath one's finger.
For the best user experience, we provide especially developed applications, which are designed to make the most of the above functionalities. These apps are designed to provide blind and visually impaired people with learning and entertainment opportunities, opportunities for creative expression and are easy to learn and use.
How does Feelif work?
Feelif devices provide a number of useful tools for blind and visually impaired people to interact with touchscreens and our special digital content.
The transparent relief grid provides orientation on the screen. It also provides them with the visualization of the main directions, such as up, down, left and right. It also gives them a notion of what is straight on a touchscreen.
The vibrations of the tablet interact with where the finger is on the touchscreen. If there is something that the visually impaired can interact with, the device will alert them by vibrating. Depending on what is on the screen, the devices will use different types of vibrations for an even better representation of the various elements on the screen.
The speech assistance will describe to the user what is on the screen, where they are or what they are interacting with.
Additionally, a number of sounds are used to assist blind and visually impaired people with creating an image of what is on the screen. For example, objects with different colors are represented by various instruments. Also, certain apps use different notes to distinguish between different directions. For example, a different note will be playing when moving up on a surface, compared to when moving down on a surface.
Furthermore, we use realistic natural sounds, and enforce them with speech, to strengthen the connections between the noises they may hear frequently and what they represent (e.g. when interacting with a picture of a car, the tablet says “car” and then plays a car engine noise).
How do I use Feelif?
The tablet is adapted with blind and visually impaired people in mind. Despite the device looking familiar, we've adapted the gestures to minimize the chances for blind and visually impaired people to enter incorrect commands. To access the Feelif Launcher, you must first unlock the tablet by pressing the power button and swiping on the screen to unlock it. Once on the main screen, you can quickly access Feelif Launcher with a double tap on the home button.
The Feelif Launcher is a controlled environment where all our applications can be accessed. In order to interact with the tablet you use the following 5 major gestures:
Single tap selects an item on the screen.
Double tap interacts with the item on the screen.
Swiping left or right with two fingers will move to a different horizontal screen.
Swiping top to bottom with two fingers will go up a level in a menu or open the settings quick menu when on the main screen. If you're already in the app menu, this gesture will exit to the Feelif Launcher menu, and if you repeat this gesture again, it will exit to the home screen.
Lastly, pressing all five fingers on the tablet will prompt the tablet to tell you exactly what is on the screen right now.
What can I do with Feelif?
- you can feel shapes, pictures, diagrams, graphs, and photos;
- you can read multi-sensory content - tactile books Feelbooks;
- Feelbook Maker allows teachers and parents to create new tactile books for blind and visually impaired children;
- you can draw, you can be creative and share your masterpieces with others via e-mail;
- you can play digital games: alone, with friends or even online;
- you can learn Braille, graphs, math, improve fine motor skills, boost cognitive skills, improve spatial orientation, concepts and much more.
Sighted people can also do all of those, and our multiplayer options in our games allow them to play games together with visually impaired people.
Can I use Feelif as a phone or a tablet?
Yes. Feelif devices are specially adapted smartphone or tablet, and you can use all the functionalities that the basic devices provide.
Can I get Feelif on an Apple device?
At the moment we have no option for using our software on Apple devices.
Can I buy the transparent relief grid and/or software without the device?
No, we only offer the transparent relief grid and software in combination with devices as a whole, because it is important for us to provide you with the superior user experience.
How much time will I spend learning how to use Feelif?
Feelif is like an instrument. The basic handling can be taught in a few minutes. Sighted, blind and visually impaired people have all learned to use our devices and software in less than 5 minutes.
However, to use Feelif in its full capacity it takes practice. The more it is used, the more detailed and rewarding the experience will be. The needed time for practice depends from person to person.
Can I create my own content for Feelif?
Blind and visually impaired people can use our Draw application to create drawings.
Feelif Pro comes with a pre-installed app called Feelbook Creator. This application is created for sighted people specifically and allows them to create their own content for other Feelif devices called Feelbooks. The purpose of Feelbook Creator is to allow teachers, caretakers and other sighted people to create educational, creative or interactive content for blind and visually impaired. You will be able to sell Feelbooks on our Feelif Open Platform and connect with the community of educators and creators of content for blind and visually impaired people.
How can I use Feelif to interact between sighted and visually impaired people?
Since Feelif devices are adapted tablets, they can be used to interact between sighted and blind and visually impaired people. Furthermore, all the games and educational content designed for the blind are also usable by sighted people, as all the information is still shown on the tablet screen visually.
Feelif devices are built to facilitate the inclusion of blind and visually impaired people. The devices can be used by all people, are easy to learn, and offer multiplayer options for all games and our educational apps are built with options to facilitate cooperation between sighted and visually impaired people. For example, using Feelif Draw the sighted person can draw a picture, which the blind or visually impaired person can feel and understand what it is that is drawn on the touchscreen.
Can I change the transparent relief grid?
Yes, the grid is removable and you can clean it with water (make sure to dry it before you place it back on the device).
We would like to point out that it is suggested for sighted people to do change the transparent relief grid, as the relief grid should be calibrated with the screen (meaning that the dots on the screen and the dots on the relief grid align) when you put it back on the Feelif device.
Which applications can I get and what do they do?
With Feelif Gamer you will get gaming applications, practical apps and tactile books for blind and visually impaired.
Feelif Creator includes all of Gamers content and in addition educational apps.
Feelif Pro includes everything from Feelif Maker as well as special software for sighted people to design their own tactile books - Feelbook maker app.
When the future developed applications, tactile books, and other content will be available, they will be automatically downloaded with the latest software updates to your device. For enabling the automatic updates, your device needs to be connected to the WiFi.
All available applications are described in the Content section.
What Feelif is NOT?
Feelif has unlimited potential, which awaits for you to unlock it. The basic handling with Feelif can be thought in a few minutes and its easy to use, however for the user to experience the true magic Feelif offers you need to practice. Because with every new hour of Feelif usage you understand and comprehend the device better, and it surprises you with the new feature you haven't noticed before. You will never be bored with Feelif!
For which ages are Feelif devices and applications optimized?
Our devices and applications are for users of all ages. Feelif with its various practical apps such as simplified calling, camera, games is a perfect device for blind adults. However, it brings revolutionary change to the educational sector for teachers and parents of blind and visually impaired children. We have developed applications, which are designed to provide blind and visually impaired children and youngsters with learning and entertainment opportunities, opportunities for creative expression and are easy to learn and use.