man with cell phone5 Phone Apps for People with Disabilities

Below are five phone apps we found that could be of assistance to people with various disabilities. We have not personally tried all of these apps, therefore we cannot vouch for them. We are also not affiliated with any of the developers or companies mentioned.

Parking Mobility (iPhone, Android)

Have you ever wandered around an unfamiliar area looking for public handicap parking? This app provides user edited maps of available parking spaces. Users can upload new spaces, delete ones that no longer exist and report parking abusers. According to the developers, adding new parking areas only takes about 30 seconds and you will be helping others in your community too. This app has mixed reviews on Google Play. Many people are writing that abuse reporting does not work, but it can still provide parking location assistance.

SoundAMP Lite (iPhone $0.99) and Hearing Enhancer (Android)

 

Many people have difficulty hearing in certain situations but do not require the use of hearing aids. Sound Amp Lite and Hearing Enhancer are designed to intensify sound. Both require the use of headphones or ear buds. Unlike some competitor’s programs, both of these companies advertise that the sound amplification is completed in real time without lag, thus eliminating a perceived echo effect. I tried out Hearing Enhancer and it appeared to have a half-second lag time. It enhanced noises around me, but it did not really enhance voice or music.

Diabetes App Lite (iPhone) and Diabetes Plus (Android)

Quality of life for a diabetic, especially for older people, hinges on how well they control their intake along with blood glucose levels. Both of these phone apps purport to assist in carbohydrate calculations, record keeping and reporting to your doctor. According to the developers of Diabetes Plus, their app was developed by diabetics for diabetics.

Dress for Weather (iPhone $1.99)

Anyone can get some use out of this app! Get clothing suggestions based on the forecasted temperature for your location. Scrolling left to right provides morning, afternoon and night suggestions. This app is especially beneficial for children who dress themselves for the day as well as adults with cognitive disabilities due to its large pictures and minimal text.

Breathe to Relax (iPhone, Android)

Breathing exercises have been shown to help people manage stress by allowing them to concentrate on something other than the stress factor and slow down their body systems. The free Breathe to Relax phone app provides diaphragm breathing exercises designed to help with anger management, stress and anxiety.

And here’s a bonus phone app:

PTSD Coach (iPhone, Android)

The first time I heard of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) it was in conjunction with a veteran coming off a stint in Iraq. Now anyone who has suffered a traumatic event can be diagnosed with this medical condition. Although PTSD manifests itself differently from one person to the next, many episodes are marked by extreme anxiety. PTSD coach provides information about PTSD and several exercises designed to help a person overcome its effects.

From the Coming Sometime Soon Department…
A phone that warns visually challenged people of objects in their path is being developed at the University of Alicante in Spain. Their app used a phone with a 3D camera that allowed the phone to calculate the distance to objects and vibrate a warning when an object came within a certain range. Unfortunately the phone they developed the app on was discontinued by the manufacturer. Here’s hoping that they can figure out a way to make the app work on a regular phone!

 

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