News from Apple Insider today that the global technology company have registered two patents for ideas which would allow the iPhone or iPad to be used as an assistive device for deaf people.
The first patent outlines how a device could be used to change speech which is difficult to understand and make it easier to follow. This is done by using voice recognition technology to pick up the speech and then relay it in a consistent computer-generated way so that the problem of listening to accents, for example, is minimised. It could also change the tone of the speech to match the hearing range of the listener.
The second patent describes how the iPhone could be used to alert people to sounds around the home, like the telephone or doorbell. This turns the iPhone into a pager, like the bellman pager for example, which is a fixture in the homes of many deaf people. More here. Apple have also been reported to be working on ideas to connect the iPhone to compatible hearing aids.
This news comes hot on the heels of a new development, that we reported last week, which uses smartphone technology to make the lights flash at home when a message or call is received.