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Microsoft Cities Unlocked

Microsoft have been making waves in the news this morning with a new piece of tech, once again partnering with a charity to produce a tool that will significantly change the lives of blind people around the world.

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As part of a wide collaboration Microsoft have designed a headset that will be a first in it’s field. The headset will be used in conjunction with a mobile app that will pick up signals from nearby sensors. With the headset using bone induction technology which allows the transfer of sound through the users cheekbones, these sensors will create a soundscape using clear spoken instructions and directional audio cues that will give the users the same freedom to navigate as those who are fully sighted.

The sensors have already been implemented at Reading train station (the locale of Microsoft HQ) and Tesco have backed the initiative at their Reading branch meaning it’s well on it’s way to becoming a widely used device amongst partially sighted and blind sufferers.

A big thank you to Jenny Cook, Head of Strategy and Research at Guide Dogs, Amos Miller, Director, Enterprise Strategy Asia at Microsoft, Jarnail Chudge, User Experience Architect, Microsoft UK, Gerald James & Kirsty Grice, Cities Unlocked trialists, Angus Foreman, Chief Technology Officer, Microsoft Services, Microsoft UK, Dee Beach, Mobility Instructor, Guide Dogs and Claire Mookerjee, Project Lead, Urbanism, Future Cities Catapult.