The mobile phone industry has soared heights that weren't even imaginable few years back. However, with times changing, the industry has gotten more open with vendors looking to cater to all kinds of needs. And keeping up with the boom in the market, the world's first braille phone has now been unveiled, dubbed OwnFone.
Made primarily for the visually impaired, as the device name and its speciality suggests, the new braille-supported phone from OwnFone has been made available for a price tag of just £60 (around Rs 6,000).
While the company behind the new feat claims that it's first in line to launch a Braille phone publicly at an impressive low cost, OwnFone also states that such reduced prices have only been possible by keeping the production cost low.
The production cost, itself, has been kept low with the help of 3D printing for the front and back panels, according to BBC. "3D printing... provides a fast and cost-effective way to create personalised Braille buttons," Tom Sunderland, the inventor of the phone, told BBC in an interview.
He also added that the device's Braille script can also be replaced with English texts for those who cannot read Braille. "Our 3D phone printing process is patent pending," he said.
However, this isn't the first time that a phone with braille capabilities for the blind has been mentioned. Previously, India-based start-up Kriyate built a prototype for a Braille-enabled smartphone in 2013.
The device would feature a repressible Braille display and feedback controls (known as haptic touch) that would beep or vibrate after receiving certain commands.