I’ve written a few posts in the past about how the Kindle can be made accessible for people with visual impairments. The Kindle and Amazon have made great strides towards accessibility both within the device itself and through external attachments.
The latest gadget to join to Kindle accessibility lineup is PageBot by Origin Instruments. PageBot has a number of adaptive switches that can help people with motor disabilities navigate the Kindle’s “previous” and “next” page buttons, as well as the keyboard. I think that is awesome because the buttons are small, and require some muscle strength to use them. Currently, PageBot is available online starting May 12 for Kindle 2 and Kindle DX. The Kindle 3 version will be available in June, 2011.
PageBot is also compatible with Sip/Puff and other switches that are designed for people who are paralyzed or have any other motor disability that would prevent them from using their hands.
PageBot includes a mount for tables, shelves and any other similar surfaces, as well as a foam padding to prevent mechanical shock.
If you are concerned about battery power, PageBot is designed to run on low battery power. So, the Kindle’s battery should be able to handle it quite well.
Official list of features according to Origin Instrument’s website:
- The Kindle is supported in a rugged mount with facing surfaces of compliant foam
- Includes a four degree-of-freedom articulated arm with integrated clamp for mounting
- Dual electro-mechanical actuators for the Kindle’s Next Page and Previous Page buttons
- Dual switch connectors for interface to adaptive switches with standard 3.5 mm plugs
- Stereo input capability for interfacing dual switches with a single cable
- Integrated USB host for adaptive switches that emulate a USB mouse
- Integrated Keep Awake mode prevents the Kindle from entering sleep after a pause in reading
- Micro-USB power input for compatibility with the standard Kindle power adapter
- Optional rechargeable battery pack supports wireless portability and full on-the-go reading
- PageBot exposes all Kindle features for manual access, including the Amazon Whispernet wireless antenna(s), the stereo headphone jack, the Kindle battery recharge port, and the Kindle’s buttons and switches
- The Kindle can be inserted or removed from PageBot for convenient sharing with friends and family members
Origin Instruments has a number of other assistive technology gadgets for the iPhone, iPod Touch and others. I encourage you to take a look at them, and pass this along to anyone who might could use PageBot for their Kindle. A great way to provide a pleasurable reading experience for all audiences.