Mobile devices including iPads, tablets and smartphones can provide so many benefits for people living with a disability. Mobile technology can add tools for communication including telehealth, for education for people of all ages plus leisure activities. So choosing the right accessories that enable the device to meet the needs of the user are so important so that the potential for the apps and tools on the device to be realised.
Good quality protective device case with the right features
A dropproof, protective case for the user’s device is a good star. Make sure that it is made from quality materials, and has been designed to handle the rigours of everyday life, including corner protection, and screen protection. While a cheap and cheerful case from a pop up store may look like it will do the job, it is unlikely to protect the device from the harder-than-normal treatment by many people with disabilities, so choose a case from a leading brand.
Look out for helpful features on the case too, as they can add versatility to how you use the case. This could include a carry handle, hand grip or shoulder strap to make carrying the device easier, or a stand to prop it into a good reading or typing position. Some cases have inbuilt screen protectors too.
Mount a device where it is most useful
Especially for clients with limited mobility, the placement of a device where they can easily use it or view it is so important. This improves not only the comfort for the user, but also reduces the chance of the device being dropped or knocked if it is in an awkward position.
For wheelchair users, a secure mount with a device cradle can put the iPad, tablet, phone or other device in easy access, yet secure from drops.
Ruggedise the power port
Some clients experience clumbsiness or shakes, and as such, docking a device to recharge can be both difficult for the user and increase the change of damage or wear for the device. A good solution for many users is to ruggedise the power port so that multiple, hard attempts at docking won’t damage the delicate power port.
A device case with an inbuilt power dock helps to protect the device overall but also to enable users to place the device into a docking station imperfectly and still get it recharging and on the way.
Ruggedised power docks are available for a number of device brands including Apple, Samsung and some other leading brands.
Device stand for low vision
Many low vision clients use iPads and tablets for reading, either ebooks or by photographing paper books and enlarging the image on the screen. A desktop tablet stand can take the work away from a user’s shoulders and neck by holding the device closer to the user’s face for reading. Some tablet stands are portable so can be included in a student’s bag, while others may stay at home or school.
Understanding how much a device can add to someone’s ability to communicate, learn or calm themselves, then its important to keep the device charged and working, at home or away. A portable power bank can be used anywhere to recharge tablets, phones or other devices when away from a power point. Look at the battery size of the power bank and compare it to the requirements of the device battery to understand how many recharges the device may get from a full power bank.
Battery size is measured in milliamp hours or mAh, so if the phone battery size is 2000mAh, then a power bank of 5000mAh will recharge it up to 2 times.