My top tech of 2022 – with Stuart Beveridge Posted on 18th December 2022 Stuart Beveridge from SeeScape Fife is back to give us his annual round-up of his favourite tech, assistive technology and gadgets. Stuart has tried it all! And we love hearing his reviews and recommendations. My guide dog retired in October this year and I’m just about to go away for a few weeks’ training with my new guide dog so over the last couple of months, some tech has come into play for me in an even greater way than usual. WeWalk This is not the first time people will have heard me mention the WeWalk but I’ve found it invaluable over the last few months. In obstacle detection mode, it lets you know when things are coming up at chest height and above. Seescape have moved offices so I’ve found it really helpful to use around the building as I am still getting to know it. It’ll also be helpful in the hotel during my guide dog training. NaviBelt The NaviBelt vibrates to tell you which way to go. It has a built-in compass so if you veer off the route you have input into your phone, the vibration moves from the centre of the belt to the left or right. Once it’s in the centre, I know I’m going in the right direction. I’ll be using the NaviBelt with my new guide dog to take some of the pressure off in the early days and weeks and to give us a bit more confidence. Envision Smart Glasses I’ll also be taking my Envision glasses with me to the hotel in case I need sighted assistance. I’ll use the Envision Ally video connection feature to call a trusted family member if I get into difficulties when navigating around the hotel, which will be a totally unfamiliar environment for me. Smart Vision 3 Mobile Phone One new addition to my ever-growing array of gadgets is the Smart Vision 3 Mobile Phone. It runs on Android 11 and, in my opinion, it is THE smartphone for people who are blind or vision impaired. The phone has a tactile keypad for navigation and keyboard entry, but it can also be controlled entirely by touch screen. You can even use a dedicated voice control button on the side to quickly open apps or dictate text messages, emails etc. This phone really is an all-in-one solution because it allows you to download apps via the Play Store, but also has specialist dedicated apps built in. My favourite specialist app is called Kapten GPS which is a fully-functioning GPS navigation system designed for visually impaired people. Even better, it is also possible to connect a Braille Display or Bluetooth Keyboard to the phone, so it really does seem as though the developers have thought of everything. Chromebook I spoke about trying out the Chromebook in last year’s tech round up and I’m still using it! It would be a great device for someone who is not particularly tech savvy because it’s so easy to use. If I want to do web browsing, that’s my go-to device. BrailleSense6 I couldn’t do an AT review without talking about Braille. I use my BrailleSense 6 every day for podcasts, emails, notetaking, word processing…I could not do without that machine. Its portability essentially makes it Braille tablet.