Accordingto a report of the United Nations, more than a billion people are living inthis world with some sort of disability and out of those more than 50 milliondisabled people live in India. While there is no proper infrastructure fordisabled people, that make it more difficult for them to get around. Therefore,there is a need for technological innovation to help them in leading a normaland comfortable life.
Severalstart-ups have decided to make the everyday life of disabled people normal withtheir unique and interesting products so, here in the article below, we present7 Indian start-ups who are working to ensure that everyday life is not so'different' for the differently-abled people.
AnandChowdhary and Nishant Gadihoke started Oswald Foundation in the year 2016 bybuilding a free reading solution for people with dyslexia. Now it is known asValmiki reading solution and works as a browser extension. It has a built-infeature that automatically adjusts to colour contrast ratio and typographyaccording to the people suffering from learning or reading disorder.
Theyhave also developed an accessibility features in their websites known asAgastya for web developers. Another project which they are working on isShravan, which will be an end-to-end accessible smartphone. This technologywill be integrated with various features that will allow visual impaired,unlettered, senior citizens and anyone who needs it to use a smartphone.
Prostheticlegs have been there in the market for a long time now. But their heavyweightand lack of flexibility is something many amputees have to unwillingly dealwith. But there is something light in weight and can help a disabled person tomove.
Thereis a startup known as Rise Legs, based in Bengaluru which works on making caneprosthetic legs which can be customized according to the needs of thecustomers. So if any disabled person who wants to run or wants a creativedesign for their prosthetic legs, they can do it for you. This company wasfounded by Arun Cherian who was a robotics professional and he is working withvarious leaders of industry to build strong equipment for disabledpeople.
Technologicaladvancement can help people suffering from various disabilities and seniorcitizens to live independently. Barrier Break is a startup which focuses onthose technologies that can assist the disabled people. It was started byShilpi Kapoor and they have already manufactured products like vibrating watchfor those who can't see and AAC (Augmentative and Alternative Communication)technology for people who are unable to speak.
Apartfrom bringing assistive technology to India, Barrier Break services 9 othercountries. It also works with non-profit organizations, governments andcorporate to create an ecosystem that is conducive to empower persons withdisabilities using technology and work towards bridging the road map for aninclusive society.
Wherethe world is changing every day and new technologies are disrupting industries,can you imagine how a person who is visually impaired is accessing theinternet? To enable them to stay at pace with the rest of the world, IIT Bombayalumni Surabhi Srivastava has built BrailleMe, a machine that plugs into mobilephones and other devices to assist visually impaired people to access theinternet.
Whiletraditional, script-based Braille prints are not just bulky but also expensive;this product stands out as it is 10 times cheaper than all existingcommercially available competitors.
Beingable to move anywhere at will is an important aspect of our lives but most ofour disabled friends still struggle from hassle-free accessibility yet thisproblem is overlooked by major companies of India. A cab service startup whichis based in Bengaluru, Kick Start, founded by Vidhya Ramasubban and SrikrishSiva have started a service for people who are bounded by wheel-chair to travelfrom one place to another without being dependent on their family andfriends.
Thesecustomized cabs are equipped to accommodate wheelchair users as well as thosewith disabilities and senior citizens. They also have trained drivers who helpcustomers to board as well as get off the cab with no problem.
Thisbootstrapped startup founded by Joe Ikareth and his wife Murielle Ikarethrealizes the need for comfortable clothing and accessories solutions fordifferently-abled people to ease of dressing and undressing. They were inspiredby the traditional fabric of Kerala such as cotton, silk and linen.
Theyhave an aim to create equitable, ecological and elegant clothes for disabledpeople. They have a boutique in Fort Kochi in which they have a collection ofamazing designs. Their collection is also available at 'Ensemble' in Delhi'Teatro Dhora' in Jaipur, 'Grasshopper' in Bangalore and Sosas' in Goa.