Breaking Barriers

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BY GRACE NAH AND BRITTNEY NORRIS

Recently Tobii Dynavox, a leader in assistive technology for communication, expanded their mission for improving the quality of life for even more people through a new device called Indi™. This first-ever direct-to-consumer speech tablet provides a communication solution for individuals of all ages with speech and language disabilities, including those with autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, Rett syndrome and Intellectual disabilities.

“We truly believe that everyone deserves and should have access to a voice, especially children as they grow as individuals, each with unique personalities,” said Tara Rudnicki, President, Tobii Dynavox North American Market. “We saw a huge gap in the market, where families in need of augmentative and alternative communication technology were facing daunting roadblocks including cost, eligibility, and ease-of-access. Indi helps remove these barriers so they can focus on what’s important – being able to communicate and engage with the world around them.”

With a magnitude of smart tablets out on the market today, and many different apps and software that can be used to support speech generation, it can be confusing and overwhelming to find the right communication solution. Indi is the first purpose built tablet for speech output and Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC). The fully integrated software and content in Snap + Core First® on Indi has been designed to meet the needs of even the earliest communicator all the way to a more independent symbol user. If a parent is considering an AAC device for their child, they can confidently approach Indi as a communication device that can be customized to meet their child’s individual needs.

BETTER COMMUNICATION, FOR A BETTER QUALITY OF LIFE

Imagine for a moment not being able to express verbally what you are feeling daily, and how quickly you would become frustrated. Nonverbal individuals face this challenge every day, and this inherent frustration often comes out in their actions. Trying to understand and translate these actions as a parent, teacher, or caregiver can be very challenging.

Giving an individual the ability to express themselves is one of the most powerful things a family can do to help increase their quality of life, as it ultimately helps build their relationships with family and communication partners. There’s no limit to the benefits of having a system that will help a child or adult become engaged with family and peers, build literacy skills, and grow their communication skills.

Many of the core challenges that users and communication partners typically experience with off-the-shelf software and hardware for AAC have been specifically addressed with the Indi, including software customization, ergonomic design, and overall ease-of-use.

Indi provides an in-depth level of content reflecting tools that allow for engagement, encourage growth, helping to build literacy in its users. This focus on communication and engagement is also supported by an unprecedented number of activities, books, lesson plans, and step-by-step implementation instructions – all included.

In fact, when given the opportunity to explore Indi’s Snap + Core First software against leading competitor apps, 9 out of 10 speech language pathologists and educators identified Snap + Core First as the easiest to use and navigate, while containing the words they were looking for.

Indi with Snap + Core First software comes with Microsoft Windows 10 Creators update installed, so users can get started instantly. Snap + Core First meets each communicator wherever they are on their communication journey and evolves with the individual as they grow. It is designed to be the most intuitive and engaging symbol-based software solution on the market, so you don’t have to worry about spending hours on setup or getting the right content in place, as it’s already done for the user, and it’s easy to customize.

To assure communication partners and users get the most out of Core First, Tobii Dynavox has also developed Pathways for Core First, a free, one-of-a-kind companion app that is packed with expert advice for how to meaningfully impact user communication success and guide them on their journey to literacy and independence. Pathways is a unique learning blueprint that will enhance partner communication skills and features an interactive goal setting tool, lesson plans, cheat sheets, and videos to help make the biggest impact on user success.

Last but certainly not least, what good is a communication device if the speakers are too quiet to hear the user in real-life environments? Indi has powerful, outward facing, built-in speakers that provide crystal clear speech with exceptionally loud output and a wide range of authentic sounding voices. So, users can be heard anywhere life takes them, like on the playground, at school or even at a ball game.

Indi is the collaborative brainchild of Tobii Dynavox’s 25 years of experience in AAC, and is comprised of all the best parts of the company’s previous software and hardware options that have been proven to work well to create the world’s first all-in-one, consumer focused speech tablet.

Visit: www.tobiidynavox.com/indi, or by contacting a local Tobii Dynavox representative.