UX for the first object interaction app — Dot Go

For blind and visually impaired people, it’s challenging to enter unfamiliar environments. Objection detection apps can identify objects but fail when it comes to interacting with these objects in a meaningful way. 

Dot Go is the first object interaction app, which means that it not only detects objects in the environment but also connects them to actions. These actions could be internal actions like sounds and vibration, and external actions in other apps, websites, and even smart home devices. 

For example: A bus stop sign could trigger open the public transportation app to buy the right ticket. 

Following the simple material conditional logic used in programming — “if x then y” — Dot Go allows users to create on a simple principle: Any object can be connected to any action. 

 “This new approach [of letting you connect any object to any action] unlocks a whole new way for visually impaired people to interact with the world. Everything can become accessible.” — Florian Beijers, Software Developer, Accessibility Consultant

Unlike existing solutions that rely on proprietary databases, Dot Go leverages open-source computer vision models, including those of other solutions, making the app as accurate as all existing solutions combined, while enabling customization for specific user needs. 

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 “The open architecture of Dot Go not only allows integration of all kinds of object libraries, each containing thousands of objects,”  — Pavel Larinov, Creative Technologist, Hyperinteractive

The same customization principle is applied to preset creation: Instead of fixed use cases, anyone can create presets for specific objects, locations, and needs. Nobody has to start from scratch, as they can download existing presets from a growing library of use cases curated by users, institutions, and brands. Dot Go empowers the visually impaired community to engage more with their environment and experience it in their own way. 

“While this can be helpful for anyone, this makes a huge difference for those who suffer from inaccessible environments. Dot Go makes any environment accessible, without specific modifications or hardware.” —  Eric Kim, CEO, Dot Inc. 

 To enhance usability and performance Dot Go works with accessories like the lanyard or active shirt for handsfree use. A Pocket Mode helps conserve energy by turning off the display while a double and triple back tap feature allows the user to switch easily between presets. 

After a promising launch of the first beta version of Dot in 2021, Dot Go received a funding of 140k USD from the Inter-Developmental American Bank (IDB) and Born2Global as a part of the LAC Deep Tech Exchange Program, to increase app functionality. As a results, a long-term partnership with Wheel The World was established to make tourism in Latin America accessible. More partnerships like this are on the way for later in 2022.

After months of development and accessibility audits, the public version of Dot Go launched in early 2022. Available for free download from the App Store, Dot Go is being used daily by thousands of visually impaired users, businesses, brands, and organizations.

For more information make sure to check out: https://dot-go.app/

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