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Karlsson J.,Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology SIAT
Assistive Technology Research Series | Year: 2011

Objective. The ICT Question Project is a national project based on cooperation between the Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology (SIAT) and the Swedish Post and Telecom Agency (PTS). The aim of the project is to create a dialogue with people with disabilities and systematically acquire knowledge about how users of the different groups perceive todaýs technology, how services and applications are working in their daily lives and disseminate the result to the outside world like organizations, community agencies, industries and users groups. Main Content. The web survey tool has been developed with the aim that user groups can use different interfaces, i.e. sign language, symbols etc. when they answer the survey questions. Eight surveys have been implemented since January 2008. The questions have for instance been about mobile phones, computers, E- services, online banking and remote controls. Results. Our results from the surveys show that lots of technical products and services that we use every day are not available for all people in our society. It is not possible to draw any general conclusions from the answers because the number of respondents is too small and because it is a self-recruited web-based panel. However the answers can give a good basis and help providers of ICT and telecom to produce better and more available products Conclusion. We believe that we will in the long term see better products and services according to the Design for all concept on the market. We in the ICT Question Project will continue our dialogue with our user groups and we want to present our experiences and inspire other actors in other countries to start consumer surveys based on people with disabilities. We have to cooperate to make our ICT community available for everyone, regardless of functional capacity. © 2011 The authors and IOS Press. All rights reserved. Source

Buchholz M.,Sahlgrenska University Hospital | Mattsson Muller I.,Sahlgrenska University Hospital | Olsson M.,Sahlgrenska University Hospital | Gani U.,Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology SIAT
Assistive Technology Research Series | Year: 2013

Smartphones and tablets have taken place in the field of assistive technology and there are now many apps to use for people with communication difficulties. There are websites, blogs and Facebook groups discussing different apps, but it can be hard to navigate between different forums and get the information you are looking for. The longterm goal with this project is to increase knowledge and compile data on how smartphones and tablets may be equipped with apps to support the every-day life of people with communication difficulties. In the first part of the three-year long project, a web forum has been designed within the realms of the website of Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology (SIAT), where information about communication apps for smartphones and tablets are compiled. The forum makes it easy to search and compare apps and read about others' experiences. It is open to everyone, and relies on tips and reviews from those who use it. The project members maintain the forum by testing and evaluating apps and submit them in the forum. Address to SIAT's forum: www.hi.se/appar. © 2013 The authors and IOS Press. All rights reserved. Source

Dahlin E.,Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology SIAT | Ryden M.,Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology SIAT
Assistive Technology Research Series | Year: 2011

Persons with psychiatric disabilities are often assumed to lack capacity to take charge and make decisions concerning their own lives. Assistive technology can form one part of the rehabilitation process for this group. The devices are intended to give a feeling of security and independence in day-to-day life for the individual and assist in increasing participation in society. To investigate accessibility to assistive technology for persons with psychiatric disabilities a web-based questionnaire was sent to each of Sweden's county councils and regions (totally 22). Questions were asked about the availability of assistive technology for persons with cognitive decline. To also define the cost and the benefit of assistive technology a cost-benefit analysis was implemented. The cost-benefit assessment was based on information from existing studies and from interviews. The results showed that persons with psychiatric disabilities are the group with least accessibility to assistive technology. Moreover, it is apparent that the cost of assistive technology after eighteen months is offset by real cost savings for municipal and county councils and a reduced need for support from closely related persons and relatives. Together, the studies reported here show that persons with psychiatric disabilities do not have access to assistive technology to the extent they need although it is beneficial with assistive technology for this group. Most of the people interviewed in the cost-benefit study are of the opinion that only one tenth of the target group have assistive devices. The vision is that access to assistive technology should be as good for persons with psychiatric disabilities as for persons with other disabilities. Effects which should be expected are that day-to-day tasks become easier, which can lead to an improved quality of life for users and a reduced need for help from society and relatives. Access to assistive technology may also result in individuals starting to study, finding employment and retaining or increasing the hours of employment that they have. © 2011 The authors and IOS Press. All rights reserved. Source

Johansson L.,Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology SIAT | Becker S.,Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology SIAT
Assistive Technology Research Series | Year: 2011

Society becomes more and more dependent on information and services provided via Internet, and ICT systems in our homes tend to be more and more complex. Many people have difficulties in using ICT devices to their full potential. Some people don't use them at all. One reason for not being part of the digital society is lack of adequate support when it is trouble. You have a need to ask someone for assistance. A telephone support service could be a way to increase inclusion. The Swedish Institute of Assistive Technology is conducting a project which aims are significantly improve ICT support to people with disabilities and elderly people. To explore the magnitude of a support service, a field trial is carried out by SIAT. Seven municipalities have been selected to take part in the trial, representing 6 % (about 600 000 inhabitants) of the population in Sweden. A well-known call centre was contracted to give the service during a two years test period. The goal for the project is to deliver a viable service from a financial perspective. We have initiated a study on different business models. Our plan is to create a market-based solution, but funding could be a combination of user charges, local, regional and national efforts. The experiences so far are very positive. More than 90 % of the calls have resulted in an acceptable solution of the user's problem. Software at the Call Centre for remotely controlling the user's computer has been used with success. Initially, the support advisors at the Call Centre were trained in serving the target groups. Their experiences in serving these consumer groups were limited. Documentation from all phone calls will constitute the basis for an intelligent database used by the service provider. These data will also be publicly available to assist other service providers in giving appropriate support to elderly and persons with disabilities. © 2011 The authors and IOS Press. All rights reserved. Source

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