Austrian Company Creates Smart Shoes For The Visually Impaired

The Austrian company Tec-Innovation has just launched on the market one of its latest creations: smart shoes that use ultrasonic sensors to help people who suffer from blindness or any type of visual impairment. The innovative product detects obstacles up to four meters away, preventing people with visual impairments from being subject to certain risks.

the smart shoes

According to a recent report published by the Odditycentral news portal, smart shoes, dubbed InnoMake, have as their main objective to become a modern alternative to the cane, an object that has been used for decades by millions of people around the world who depend on it. of a little extra help to get around as safely as possible.

As we said at the beginning of the article, the smart shoes model that is currently available on the market has ultrasonic sensors that help users detect obstacles. The presence of any obstacle is informed to the user through vibration and/or an audible alert. Both are signaled by a smartphone with a Bluetooth connection.

The idea, while interesting at first glance, is just a starting point for manufacturing similar products like this one. According to information made available in the article published by the Odditycentral portal, the Austrian company is already working on a much more advanced version, which incorporates cameras and artificial intelligence. Future technology to be used will help detect not only obstacles but also their nature.

The smart shoes created by Tec-Innovation were developed in partnership with Austria’s Graz University of Technology. The educational institution helped the Austrian company to create state-of-the-art learning algorithms. The algorithms were modeled based on neural networks and, therefore, are highly capable of analyzing the information provided by sensors and cameras built into the InnoMake shoe.

“Smart shoes tell you if the user needs to go around an obstacle and dictate the nature of the object that is in the middle of the path, after all, the visually impaired need to be aware of the objects that are in a certain area. It makes a big difference to understand whether what’s ahead is a wall, a car or a ladder,” Markus Raffer, one of the founders of Tec-Innovation, told TechXplore

“Ultrasonic sensors found on the toes of smart shoes detect obstacles that are up to four meters away. The user receives such information through vibration and/or acoustic signals from cell phones,” added Raffer.