Smartphone app that provides audio descriptions of surroundings

Solution
RightHear
Organization
Right Hear
Country of Implementation
Israel
Region
Asia & Pacific
Subregion
MENA
Start Year
2015
First published
10.02.2023

RightHear is a start-up from Israel that uses beacons (small radio transmitters) as orientation aids. Nurtzer:ins receive information directly into their earphones once the app has detected the location. By 2022, RightHear had more than 30,000 customers and covered more than 2,100 locations worldwide.

A man who appears to be blind is walking in a street with a walking stick on one hand and a mobile phone on the other following the instructions of the app.
RightHear uses beacons (small radio transmitters) as orientation aids.

Solution details

People

Idan MEIR Website
“Independence is a necessity to live life to the fullest.” Gil Elgrably, RightHear Chief Technology Officer, and Co-founder

RightHear is a start-up company with a social purpose based near Tel Aviv, Israel. Its free RightHear app targets people who are blind, have low-vision, or experience orientation challenges. Using beacon technology, which requires onsite radio transmitters (beacons), customers receive orientation support directly to their earpiece once the app has recognized the location. As of 2022, RightHear has more than 30,000 customers and covers more than 2,100 locations in Australia, Israel, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Problems Targeted

People who are blind or have low vision often have difficulty in navigating the built environment, and many orientation apps require constant signal coverage to operate properly.

Solution, Innovation and Impact

RightHear beacons, which are pocket-size radio transmitters, are installed at selected venues to identify the precise location of the user and send information via Bluetooth to the user’s smartphone app. This provides users with an accurate experience of the venue. Beacons do not require GPS or a permanent Internet connection. Venues can pre-programme descriptions through a secure customizable dashboard, which can include anything from identifying exits and evacuation routes, restrooms, and elevators, to special offers and menus. This can support not only people with visual impairments but also people who have difficulties interpreting signage, such as users with dyslexia, memory loss, or people not fluent in the local language. Starting as a pilot at a university campus, RightHear has international customers like Pizza Hut, McDonald's, Volkswagen, Costa Coffee, Grand Hyatt Hotel, Microsoft, Google, and Ritz Carlton in 2022.

Funding, Outlook and Transferability

The business model is based on a subscription service to companies using the technology, allowing the app to be free to users. The subscription allows a business to access an admin portal that allows customization of the audio information. Beacons and technical support are available at an additional cost. Between 2019 and 2022, RightHear has been expanding very quickly in Israel and abroad. The company is aiming to grow to 10,000 locations worldwide within three to five years, with a focus of expanding in the US and the UK. The model is available in 26 languages.

Media

Pictures

A man who appears to be blind is walking in a street with a walking stick on one hand and a mobile phone on the other following the instructions of the app. RightHear uses beacons (small radio transmitters) as orientation aids.

Downloads

Related information

Connections
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Solutions with the same:

Country of Implementation

Israel

Region of Implementation

Asia & Pacific