Google launches its Lookout app to help the visually impaired

Google's Lookout app says what it sees for blind users in the US

Users will have three modes to select from - Explore, Shopping, and Quick Read.

The AI-powered app, which has been undergoing testing since it was originally announced in May 2018, is created to help blind and visually impaired people by identifying the objects around them.

Lookout uses similar underlying technology as Google Lens, Google said in a blog post, to provide feedback, earcons, or other continuous signals to the user.

Lookout helps people in situations where they might need to ask for assistance, including learning about a space for the first time, reading text, and completing daily routines like cleaning, cooking, and shopping.

Announced at last year's I/O, Lookout is finally available for users to try out.

It is now available at the Google Play Store for all Pixel devices running Android 8.0 Oreo and is currently only available in English. Now, the AI-powered app is available, as long as you're a Pixel owner.

Google's Lookout app says what it sees for blind users in the US
Google uses its AI expertise to help the blind explore their surroundings

Bear in mind, since this is a new technology developed by Google, the results would not be 100-percent accurate; however, there's a room for improvement since Google is allowing users to share their feedback by contacting their Disability support team.

Also, the app won't give user the unnecessary information, but only tell them things that it thinks are important. The company also suggests that the users either hang their Pixel phone around their neck or place it in a shirt pocket. In February, the tech giant launched two new apps for Android, Sound Amplifier and Live Transcribe, which are created to "make life a little easier" for those with hearing loss. As it communicates with the caller, Assistant would display a transcription of the conversation in real-time.

Last year, it added automated closed captions to Google Slides, a feature that makes presentations more accessible to people who are deaf or visually impaired.

Google hinting at accessibility initiative for disabled?

I can't imagine having to navigate today's world while visually impaired.

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