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British technology will benefit the blind and partially-sighted

Talking TVs to launch in August

TVs that can talk to their owners are now a reality, thanks to British high-tech company, Ocean Blue Software.

Expected in stores by the end of the summer, the firm’s low cost text-to-speech technology, Talk@TV, is being built into set-top boxes from Korean company Arion Technology, which will be branded and distributed in the UK from August.

The new set-top boxes are like regular Freeview or satellite boxes, but will be able to talk to their blind or partially sighted owners, advising on the TV schedule, for example.

“The digital switchover has multiplied the number of channels to 40+ for UK consumers, making navigation very difficult for the visually impaired,” said Ocean Blue Software’s CEO Ken Helps. “This technology is a step forward to making digital TV accessible to all sectors of the community.”

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