IDEAL Group—a provider of technology solutions for people with disabilities—announced the release of a speech to real-time text (RTT) communications’ application designed to help more than 45 million Americans with hearing loss and speech disabilities. Speech2RTT® is an Android application that is designed to help enable people who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, and nonverbal to communicate with others using their Android smartphone.

According to IDEAL, the Speech2RTT® app is designed to work across all wireless networks; it transcribes and then streams the text of what is being said, in real time, between individuals. If a user cannot speak, or opts not to speak, they can type what they want to say, in real time. Speech2RTT® is available on Google Play and accommodates transcribing any one of 68 languages. No live communications assistants (CAs) are involved. No limits are imposed on the length of a communication. The app is being offered for free until October 1, 2018, at which time a $12 annual fee will be assessed for continued use.

According to Steve Jacobs, president of IDEAL Group, “Speech2RTT will impact the telecom market by increasing competition, reducing cost, and offering consumers more choices. Our mission is to increase the communication independence of individuals who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, and nonverbal… and Speech2RTT takes the market a giant step forward in that direction.”

Robert Felgar, CEO of RAZ Mobility, said, “Federal and state governments currently spend over a billion dollars a year for live operators to transcribe speech conversations. Speech2RTT’s automatic transcription capability holds the potential to save these governments a substantial amount of money.”

Speech2RTT® received funding support from the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Community Living, Health, and Function (LiveWell RERC), which is funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR).

Mike Jones, co-principal investigator of the LiveWell RERC emphasized Speech2RTT’s critical contribution to enabling people who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, or have speech impairments to communicate independently, with anyone, using standard Android smartphones. “Speech2RTT is an easy to use solution that brings mobile communications to a much wider user base who until now has had to rely on Telecommunications Relay Services, which are expensive to provide and more complicated to use,” says Jones.

More information about Speech2RTT:

Source: IDEAL Group