The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) mandates wireless carriers in Canada to offer at least one mobile handset to people who are “blind and/or have moderate to severe mobility or congitive disabilities.” Today, Bell has added a full portfolio of products to service this market.
Specifically honing in on those with “speech, cognitive, physical, hearing and vision related disabilities,” the company has added a dedicated section to its website aimed at helping individuals find a device that meets their specific accessibility needs.
Visit Bell’s website and you’ll find a number of accessibility focussed devices, such as the Doro 824 and Doro 824C, that feature larger buttons, icons, text, as well as hearing aid compatibility and a dedicated emergency button.
“Nearly 14 percent of Canadians 15 and older live with a disability and often face barriers that limit accessibility to the many benefits of mobile technology,” said Blaik Kirby, president of Bell Mobility in a statement to MobileSyrup. “Bell is helping break down these barriers with our leading lineup of accessible products tailored to meet the needs of all our customers.”
In addition, Bell offers the Mobile Accessibility app for free, which enables blind and low vision customers the option to have the app read out loud what’s happening on their display. It’s currently only available on Android.
Finally, Bell says in the coming months it plans to introduce a dedicated wireless rate plan for Canadians “that are deaf or hard of hearing.” There’s no indication of how much the plan will cost or the specific features that will be included in it.