New Text to Speech software provides access to digital technologies for persons with vision disabilities in Laos

The Lao Text to Speech Synthetic Software is an accessibility solution intended to support persons with vision disabilities to use computers, web browsers and other applications. It was developed by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications of Laos, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and Thailand’s National Electronics and Computer Technology Center (NECTC).

Even though Text to Speech software was already available in other languages, this is the first time it has been adapted for Lao. The conversion generated a cost of USD40,000 dollars that were provided by the U.S. Embassy in Laos and ITU with financial support from Australian Government. It enables blind persons to read through a screen reader in spoken Lao whenever the mouse passes over a text or icon. It also indicates the letters that are pressed whenever a person is typing on the keyboard.

The next steps will be to prepare the Lao Text to Speech software for working on Android systems in order to enable persons with vision disabilities to better use their mobile phones.

Additional Sources: GAATES