Great NEW AT Products: 2016
by Molly Shannon, OTR/L, ATP,
on the ATandOT Blog
After attending the annual Assistive Technology Industry Association (ATIA) conference in Florida last week, I wanted to share some new or just great assistive technology (AT) products and resources. As it is so expensive to attend out-of-state conferences and most employers are rarely funding continuing educational conferences anymore, I hope that you find some new AT for you to consider. The extensive list below includes a combination of access devices, apps, sensory, or activities of daily living AT products.
Enablemart (www.enablemart.com ):
TECLA Shield from Komodo, $349: This device is sold through many vendors or can be purchased through Tecla. It helps address limited upper body mobility and helps people access their touchscreen devices. Tecla works with iOS and Android smartphones, tablets, and computers. It is accessible through assistive buttons, switches, or wheelchair driving controls. While it might not be new, it is a popular and powerful device.
RJ Cooper: This site is an excellent resource that offers apps, iPad accessories, software, and hardware for persons with special needs. He has updated 6 of his software programs to iPad apps. Of course he has a treasure trove of other technology for switches, mounting, and access in general.
Adaptive Switch Labs (ASL): The ATOM Electronic Head Array is a new switch interface for head access via switches and other new products for access and power wheelchair controls.
Attainment Company, Go Worksheet Maker App, $20: This is a full and free version. The app converts printed worksheets to customizable digital forms on an iPad so that all students can read and answer worksheet questions. Looked great!
School Health: This site has a variety of new no-tech tools:
Gel Fidgets: The Caterpinch Fidget, $18
Cozy Shades for filtering light, $42
Halo Cup, $6
1. Hook+, $165: Hook+ is an IOS switch interface that provides wired access.
2. Blue2 Bluetooth Switch,$179: This switch provides single or dual switch access via Bluetooth connection to iOS, Apple OS X, Windows, Google Chrome, and Android devices.
3. Relax IR Remote, $400: The NEW Relax is an accessible infrared (IR) learning remote and provides simplified control of almost any IR device.
4. my Gaze Assistive 2, $1495: myGaze Assistive 2 is an easy and affordable eye gaze control system for hands-free computer access compatible with USB 2.0 on Windows 7 and 8 or USB 3.0 on Windows 8 and 10.
Robots4autism Curriculum: Milo, RoboKind’s life-like robot, pairs with traditional intervention methods to help children with ASD reach their developmental goals. Robot-generated instruction teaches social understanding and improves a child’s ability to use social behaviors. It is IOS and Android compatible. I was actually quite impressed with this product and could see many students with ASD connecting with this combination of the robot and the tablet curriculum which are used simultaneously. Take a look at this video to help you why!
Therapy Box: Ink, $20: This IOS app has word prediction, spell check, speech-to-text options, and it has customizable options. Here’s a good article comparing INKU with Don Johnston’s Co: Writer Word Prediction from OTs with Apps.
Snugvest, $365: This vest is designed for individuals with autism, sensory processing disorder, or anxiety. Snug Vest inflates to provide adjustable pressure for a hug-like squeeze without pressure. This jacket had a very pleasing texture, looked stylish, and it was pumped with a squeeze device.
Modular Hose: This site offers mounting for switches and devices and they have very reasonably priced resources. Not new, but a great resource!
Awesome Free Resources:
1. Ablenet IOS 9 Accessibility: This is a fantastic resource!
2. Speech Recognition as AT for Writing Guide by Daniel Cochrane and Kelly Key
New AT Reference book: Quality Indicators in Assistive Technology: A Comprehensive Guide to AT Services, $50: This book is written by the industry leaders in AT and published by CAST.
So there you have it! Connect and let me hear about some of the new AT products you have found lately. If you get a chance, you really should try and attend this great conference held annually in Orlando: Assistive Technology Industry Association (atia).
Molly Shannon, OTR/L, AT , is an occupational Therapist with 33 years’ experience and currently working in the public schools as a school-based Occupational Therapist in NC. She has specialized in the provision of Assistive Technology for 29 of those years and is RESNA certified as an Assistive Technology Professional. In addition, Molly is an Adjunct Professor of Occupational Therapy at Cabarrus College of Health Sciences in the Master’s Program teaching Therapeutic Adaptations/Assistive Technology in OT. She loves to present and train others in Assistive Technology and has been a national-level conference presenter since 1989. She has worked with clients of all ages and with a wide range of disabilities in public/private school settings, non-profit educational/therapeutic agencies, outpatient/inpatient rehabilitation, and with the North Carolina Assistive Technology Program. You can connect with Molly on Twitter site, Pinterest Boards, or her ATandOT Facebook page.
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