By Andrew Liszewski
A Korean company called Primpo has developed a new type of ‘cane’ for the visually impaired that provides more detailed feedback about the world around them. Using a built-in supersonic sensor, the iSonic can detect obstacles that are above the user’s waist and has a horizontal range of about 25 degrees with a vertical range of about 50 degrees. It’s sensitive enough to detect objects that are narrower than 3cm wide, and as far as 2 meters in front of it. And as the visually impaired person gets closer to an obstacle, the iSonic will vibrate more intensely in their hand letting them know just how close they are.
It even has a special color sensor which is able to discern between 10 different shades of varying brightness, and will audibly announce the color of an object to the user. While there’s no official word on if or when the iSonic will be sold to the public, field tests conducted last September with 15 people were apparently very successful.