Mobile marketing firm Textlocal is working with Time Is Ltd. (TIL) on its JayBee solution that helps individuals with a wide variety of illnesses and varying degrees of disability to communicate audibly and instantly with the outside world.
JayBee is a system that enables people without the power of speech to communicate fully, fluently and quickly. Developed by Time Is and text-to-speech solutions firm CereProc, JayBee uses various triggers such as hand movements, a touch screen, head movements and even a simple blink of an eye, to transform predictive text phrases into realistic British voices which add character to the audible communication.
Designed initially for people with Motor Neurone Disease, JayBee allows users to say exactly what they want to say. It learns their communication patterns, using technology initially used by TIL in the space industry.
Tim IS managing director Ian Schofield wanted to extend the system to allow those indoor-bound to communicate with the outside world. The Textlocal platform has now been integrated with the JayBee system, enabling users to send text messages instantly to mobile phones, and receive the responses back into JayBee.
It works by allowing any of the phrases the user would normally speak, or so called instant phrases such as ‘Come quickly I need help now”, to be sent through Textlocal’s API Gateway. The response from the recipient is retrieved from the same Gateway and displayed in JayBee, enabling a 2-way text conversation.
“Our partnership with Textlocal is truly revolutionary for JayBee users,” says Schofield. “It means that for the first time, people can now call for help, text for an ambulance or simply have a general chat with a friend. It’s amazing that those unable to speak through conventional methods can now send a text, simply by moving a part of their body.”
Simon Greenway of simonface.org has been testing the product on behalf of people with Motor Neurone Disease. He says: “The seamless integration of Textlocal mobile services into JayBee has produced a most powerful product which will be of immense help to those who lose the ability to speak. It only takes a few keystrokes or face gestures by the user to send instant messages to carers, family and friends. JayBee with SMS really empowers those with the disease to achieve a higher quality of life through communication.”