Braille’s devices

To spread devices with Braille displays prevents several problems, including:

– it is expensive
– The price for the Braille displays varies in the range of $ 1000 to $ 5000.
– This is cumbersome
There are various versions of Braille displays. Conditionally, we can distinguish stationary and portable displays. First is marked by its cumbersome. The figure shows a stationary braille display, which can be connected to a computer via USB:


Fixed USB Braille display

Shown in Figure display with simultaneous output of 40 characters has mass and dimensions following characteristics:

– Length: 438 mm
– Width: 249 mm
– Height: 39 mm
– Weight: 1.5 kg

It should be noted that portable displays have significantly smaller size and weight. This is achieved by reducing the number of characters that are displayed simultaneously, which in turn reduces usability. The cost of these devices can not only reach, but exceed the value of fixed counterparts.


Portable Braille display with keyboard

The figure shows a portable Braille display with the ability to enter text in Braille font.

The massive and dimensional characteristics of this device are:

– Length: 150 mm
– Width: 95 mm
– Height: 27 mm
– Weight: 0.2 kg

What has been done in the laboratory of Braille device


At this stage, we have a test analogue of display to Braiile’s one, that is able to display one character. Also has three control buttons: “the next character” “previous character”, “auto switching” that allow you to control the output of characters on display.


Test instance for one segment of Braille display.

Symbol is formed of dots through electromechanical elements. The figure shows a symbol that is formed on the test specimen. Electromechanical part of the device can be realized in different cell types. These elements can be crystals, electromagnets, solenoids. There is also the possibility of using combined solutions. Thus, using electric motors in conjunction with the mechanics, you can display Braille, not concede that displays the characteristics of other elements.


Test display, which is printed in Braille character.

In developing the experimental instance of display was used electromagnets. There are a number of reasons:

– Availability
– Low price
– Speed of reaction element
In this case, the formation of character occurs due to raising and lowering of tactile dots withthrough electromagnets.

At the current stage of development control unit and input-output unit divided into two separate devices, but function as one. This decision was taken to ease development test instance.


Display and control unit.

Control unit contains a microcontroller, with firmware and driver display. Control unit connects to the computer using the USB – interface.

A USB interface controller transmitted packets of characters that should display. Also, the controller can send computer messages pressing control buttons, such as “the next character” “previous character”, “auto switching”. With the increased number of characters on the display provides the ability to add additional keys that simplify the work with the device.


A program that performs the following functions:

– Opens text files, adds the official symbols. In braille no division between large and small letters, and before each number included special character. All this taken into account when converting plain text.
– Use any alphabets. After recording a file alphabet characters and service in a special way may use the selected alphabet. Currently supported Cyrillic and Latin.
– Provides package forming characters for transmission braille. In addition to character codes converted according to alphabet characters transmitted in a package that can vary, depending on the length of the line in the display, use, and control the amount necessary to ensure integrity of packet transmission.
– Displaying Your current letters as usual in alpha form, and as Braille dots. This is useful for teachers that will teach visually impaired.
– The automatic turning. Allows you to automatically move to the next batch of characters, with a specified frequency.
– Getting feedback from the device. Already supported by three teams: the following symbols convey, transfer previous characters, activate / deactivate the automatic flip.

At this stage of development testing is performed on the one-character Braille display that was developed by the inability to get a real device. That is, use the program to study can now . The program interface is shown in Figure.


Interface-date version

Scheduled Update


It is planned to use the program in classrooms where each student will have its own display for reading and teacher – personal computer with installed program.

To successfully use the software for educational purposes, described the plan, you must add the following functionality:

– Ability to work with multiple output devices. Given the simplification of hardware for the training class is not necessary to allocate a separate computer for each braille.
– Client-server architecture. It is necessary to allow the program to connect to the server using a network connection. This feature allows the teacher to work with the textbook on the server, eliminating the option when students do not have a specific file or not all have the latest versions.
– Wide range of formats books. Currently used only file format .txt. At a minimum, add support for these common formats: .doc, .docx, .rtf, .pdf, .fb2.
– Voice support. We know that duplicated voice information is absorbed quickly. To improve the effectiveness of training is a mandatory feature.
– Support for existing Braille displays that are available on the Ukrainian market. Unlike closed source programs that work with a limited number of devices is desirable to maintain as many models displays.
– Individual / collective modes. Given the maximum convenience for the end user, be possible to study in a classroom with a teacher and personal use at home, where there is no server and using only one device.
– Support for wireless data transmission technologies. For added ease of use, braille display modules can be equipped with Bluetooth or WiFi.
– Work on different operating systems. In addition to Windows, which is able to work program, as required UNIX-like systems (Linux, MacOS, other).
– Support entering special characters from the keyboard, adjust the text.


The ultimate goal is a stationary device that will reflect 15-40 characters in Braille, this device should be available for most blind people so its value should range from 100 to 350 dollars depending on configuration and feature set that he laid.

Predicted next functions:
– Ability to connect wirelessly to a computer. When using the displays of small size, a length of about 15 characters, it becomes urgent problem of mobility. Even the small display can not be called mobile if it is chained to the computer wires. If wireless interface such as Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connection becomes possible to display signage to mobile devices (laptops, smartphones, tablets);
– Presence speaker for audio information. Since the interface can be quite difficult then to complete the interaction with the computer blind person required sound. In this case, for convenience and compactness speakers can be integrated into the display itself.
– Support for advanced braille. Extended font commonly used when displaying symbols it allows to encode additional characters or specify their additional properties, such as superscript or subscript text feature numbers and so on. Advanced Braille symbols used to display UNICODE, and the usual ASCII characters to display.

For comparison look at specialized devices for the blind

Specialized devices for the blind

The name of device

Technical characteristics

Estimated price


Tiflo-computer PRONTO! 18 QSpronto_18qs

Technical characteristics:
The standard 69-key keyboard QWERTY
Tactile markers for easy finger placement
2 built-in stereo speaker
Built-in microphone
Navistick for easy and convenient operation
4 keys to quickly launch applications
Almost netbook without a screen with a standard (QWERTY) keyboard
128 MB RAM, 64 MB flash memory, 1 GB flash drive
4 GB SDHC-card
Built-in Li-ion battery – operating time up to 20 hours
Power adapter – 100-240V 50-60 Hz
253x92x19 mm (OK. 9.9 x 3.6 x 0,7 in.)
485 g
Protective slip-cover travel


WLAN з WPA2 – IEEE 802.11g
USB-Master type
Mini-USB (Slave) Type Mini-B
3.5mm external microphone and headphones (stereo 3.5 mm)
SDHC-Slot (according to SD 2.0)
Connect to external displays and additional signage via USB or Bluetooth

Additional equipment:
The visual display that shows the symbols and language translates to additional braille
Additional and optional braille display compatible SuperVario 32 or 32 VarioConnect
power supply, cables, CD with software User

begin from 60000 UAH


Mountbatten Brailler Writer Plus writer_plus

Mountbatten Brailler Writer Plus is an electronic Braille machine, which, thanks to its powerful features can also work as a printer and laptop braille. The presence of Bluetooth Smart. Mountbatten Brailler Writer Plus is designed for parents, teachers and blind people who want to: communicate with the user Mountbatten Brailler, using their own devices IOS, download files from memory Mountbatten Brailler, print files from Mountbatten Brailler, upload files to many Mountbatten Brailler more. The device is the ideal companion for students – can be used in the first years of school, university and work.
Mountbatten Brailler Writer Plus is powered by battery, so you can take it to school and without disturbing others in the class, quietly add the necessary information in the device memory, then print it at home or transmit computer.
Mountbatten Brailler Writer Plus – a new version of the machine Mountbatten Brailler, enriched with additional features and benefits, such as verbal messaging, new software, a rugged design. Powered by a simple and thick paper, metal and plastic films.
Mountbatten Brailler Writer Plus can be used as:
Portable braille
Braille Printer
Electronic notebook
Braille Keyboard to the computer
Communication tool for those unfamiliar with Braille
Ergonomic, 8 kravpkova Braille keyboard
The ability to operate in the sixth 8 – point
Sound system
Built-in internal memory
Ability to connect a standard PC keyboard, printer connector LPT, SERIAL, PS2, USB
Braille paper 29.1 x 28 cm or standard paper
Foldable carry handle
Power: own source (9V, 5.5 A) and battery (8V, 2,5 A / h)
Weight: 5 kg
Dimensions: 460 mm x 115 mm x 240 mm

The device also works with IOS Bluetooth Smart, IPhone 4S, Ipad 3rd Generation, iPad mini or their later versions.

begin from 55000 UAH


Organiser for the blind and visually impaired Pronto! 18  pronto18_v3

Pronto! 18 V3 – popular classic organizer for blind and
visually impaired users. Pronto! 18 V3 with speech output will become
indispensable companion in school, at work or at home. Includes all the
standard features organizer, editor, database, etc.
This is one of the smallest and lightest organizers braille with speech output that
is simple to operate: Four function keys
inavistick (pointing stick) will help you accomplish the most important
tasks, high-quality Braille cells allow to comfortably read
book. Pronto! V3 comes with 18 high-quality bag that can be hung
shoulder or attach to a belt. Built-in lithium-ion battery
allow your Pronto! V3 work 18 to 25 hours without recharging.
Exclusive and elegant appearance.
8-dot Braille keyboard input
18 braille items with the cursor routing
built-in speaker and microphone
joystick for comfortable work
4 function keys for quick launch applications
WLAN with Wi-Fi protected (WPA2) – IEEE 802.11g
Bluetooth, USB master type-A, Mini-USB type mini-B, COM-port serial
3.5mm connector for connecting stereo
3.5mm connector for microphone
Map Memory SDHC (SD 2.0 according to specification)
Ability to connect through Microsoft ActivSync: connect to your PC / laptop to synchronize MS Outlook, connecting various mobile phones GSM (writing and reading SMS), the ability to connect as a Braille display to the PC / laptop.
128 MB RAM, 64 MB Flash and 1 GB disk for Flash
SDHC Memory Map Volume 4 gigabytes in the package
Built-in lithium-ion battery
Duration of work without recharging up to 25 hours
Power supply 100-240V 50-60 Hz
174 x 92 x 32 mm, weight 450g

begin from 70 000 UAH