Dublin, Ireland, February 2010 – Intel Corporation today announced that the Intel® Reader, a mobile handheld device designed to increase independence for people who have trouble reading standard print, is available in Ireland. Dyslexia affects up to 10 percent of the population to some extent and there are currently over 14,000 people with visual impairments such as partial sightedness or blindness using the services offered by the National Council for the Blind of Ireland (NCBI) for whom reading printed words is difficult or impossible.
The Intel Reader, which is about the size of a paperback book, converts printed text into digital text, and then reads it aloud to the user. Its unique design combines a high-resolution camera with the power of an Intel® Atom™ processor, allowing users to point, shoot and listen to printed text. The Intel Reader will be available in Ireland through select resellers, including Ash Low Vision and Jackson Technology.
When the Intel Reader is used together with the Intel® Portable Capture Station, large amounts of text, such as a chapter or an entire book, can be easily stored for reading later. Users will have convenient and flexible access to a variety of printed materials, helping to not only increase their freedom, but improve their productivity and efficiency at school, work and home.
The original concept for the Intel Reader came from Ben Foss, director of access technology, at Intel’s Digital Health Group who like 10 percent of the Irish population has dyslexia. Throughout school, college and university he had to depend on others to read to him or work through the slow process of getting words off a page himself. As an adult, much of the content he wanted, from professional journals to reading for leisure, just wasn’t available in audio form.
“As someone who is part of the dyslexic community, I am thrilled to be able to help level the playing field for people who, like me, do not have easy access to the printed word,” Foss said. “Feelings of loneliness are often the consequence of not being able to read easily. We hope to open the doors for people in these communities. The Intel Reader is a tool that can help give people with dyslexia, partial sightedness, blindness or other reading or learning difficulties access to the resources they need to participate and be successful in school, work and life.”
The Dyslexia Association of Ireland welcomes the Intel Reader as an important advance in assistive technology. Rosie Bissett, Director of the Dyslexia Association of Ireland said, “We are pleased that the Intel Reader is now available in Ireland. This device has the potential to offer a great deal of independence to people who have a difficulty with reading. It also allows you to read at your own pace, wherever and whenever needed, taking away the pressure and sometimes embarrassment of reading in public.”