- #2002 Ace Highend Tower 7th, Gasan Digital 2-ro, Geumcheon-gu, Seoul, KOREA
The Dot Watch: A light in the world of communication
First, we would like to say thank you to all the media that has taken an interest and championed Dot as the world’s first Braille smart watch. Since the beginning of our research, design and development journey Dot has been recognized by various well known foreign media outlets i.e. TIME magazine, BBC, Tech Asia, Popular Science, and many others. We would like to offer a sincere thank you to everyone who has taken an interest in our efforts.
An estimated 285 million people in the world are visually impaired; this includes legally blind and visually limited persons. For the past two decades there have been no new innovations regarding visually impaired technology. Available technology for visually impaired people (VIP) is expensive, bulky and often limited and only around 5% of visually-impaired people worldwide have the privilege of owning Braille devices. Educational and day to day life for VIPs has remained severely limited.
Dot’s mission is to close the information gap between the visually impaired and sighted communities. One of our goals at Dot is to show that Braille is worth learning. Braille literacy among blind children is around 10% and those that lose sight later may never learn it at all. Our hope is that they will embrace the language as a cool new way to read and write. Dot will offer them a fun and easy way to not only learn the language, but connect to the world at large.
What Exactly is the Dot Watch?
The Dot smart watch is a stylish, wearable device that outputs text in Braille (and its many versions) on the watch-face. It is completely practical and easy-to-use for the wearer. One prominent difference between the existing smart watches and ‘Dot,’ is within the usage scope: accessing information in Braille rather than using text or graphics. To achieve this, a state-of-the-art, refreshable Braille Display is used. It utilizes cutting-edge, electro-dynamic cells to seamlessly relay information. In such an active era, our device aims to outfit the ones deemed ‘limited’ or ‘immobile’.
Dot Watch Performance
The Dot Watch is incredibly easy to operate and beautifully crafted. Our innovation allows us to reduce the size and price of our products on a massive scale. Instead of traditional heavy, bulky Braille machines, our technology focuses on the seamlessness of use, and lightness of weight for portability. Although the device may have only 4 pins you can still read entire notifications. By using the touch sensors, you can read up to the last letter, then remove your finger from the display, the pins will refresh to bring up the next letters. It’s seamless. Like reading a marquee sign, but in Braille. The wearer can read their personal message across the surface of the 43 mm radius circle, in private. Here people are able to read text messages, social media notifications, and other customizable information in Braille.
We have created a Dot mobile application where certain applications can be paired with the device. Really, the possibilities are endless. However, it is still a watch at its core, so naturally it will have the ability to display the hours, while being the first Braille watch ever to display increments of time down to the second.
Reliability & Functionality features
– Stylish leather band and weighing only 33g
– Four active dynamic Braille cells that can tell you time down to the second
– 24 dots relay multiple versions of practical texts seamlessly via smart phone
– Easily connects to your smart phone via Bluetooth
– Can be used with either Apple iOS or Android operating systems
– Gyroscope and touch sensor used in the watch face for operator convenience
– lithium polymer 400mAh batteries capable of lasting 5 days on a full charge
– Ability to read time down to the second
– the ability to read messages in private
“Hi there, my daughter received her Dot watch yesterday!!! She is over the moon with it. She has already figured out most of the apps and has interfaced it with her phone and receives messages via SMS notifications. Thank you so much for the rush order to make it in time for her birthday.” – Donavin from Ireland
“Yesterday Alexa took the Dot Watch with her to school. You should have seen their [students] faces when she swapped to ‘the moving seconds’: Up to that very moment they have had just a vague idea that a minute consists of 60 seconds. But for the very first time in their lives they now got a real impression and understanding of how fast a second is gone. At school break that was topic number one! As an instantaneously result, pupils from other classes swept into Alexa’s classroom and asked for the chance to feel the Dot Watch… An unexpected success can be reported from a young student. He had some difficulties preforming mathematics beyond the numbers 1 to 20. [With the] Dot Watch, he learned to read the numbers up to 60 within a very short period of time!” – Colja from Germany
“Having the option to choose “manual scroll” and “automatic scroll” was a wonderful addition! It shows DOT is considering how to assist as many different individuals with vision impairment as possible, and in many different situations. For a proficient braille reader, the automatic scroll allows him (or her) to very quickly read a message, notification, or a phone number without having to repeatedly press a button or a sensor. On the other hand, the manual scroll allows beginning, or slower braille readers to be able to read and comprehend the text at their own pace, without feeling rushed or becoming frustrated with the watch.” – Luke from the US
Some Company Background
Although Dot may have begun as a small and humble startup, it has developed into a headstrong company with a phenomenal team at the helm. The members possess the knowledge, experience and skills required in their respective fields to move Dot into the future. Our experienced seniors oversee the hardware, software and marketing areas, while the juniors bring the strength, creativity, courage and ability to function together at optimal efficiency. We all learn from one another and have continued to grow as an amazing team that strives for excellence.
The CEO, Eric, happened to meet a blind classmate while attending the University of Washington. While most of his peers used new tablet devices, his blind classmate lugged around a large and bulky textbook, which obviously took more effort. Although there are visually impaired-friendly features on most tablets, accessibility was deemed a glaring issue. Current adaptive/assistive technology devices were often expensive and innovations for the visually impaired has been fairly stagnant for the last two decades, specifically in regards to Braille. This is how Eric was inspired to create and develop the Braille smart watch that became Dot.
The Dot Team
Dot is a team where age doesn’t matter, and we are held together by our ambition to shape an inclusive future. At Dot our senior members bring an abundance of knowledge and skills gained from experience, meanwhile the junior members provide their ability to learning quickly, with a passion for what they do, while introducing new talent to the team. We have the most talented and skillful people in the actuator technology in Korea working with us on the new Braille technology, specifically our Head of R&D, HC Park. In addition, we have two co-founders our CTO, Ki Kwang Sung and CDO Mason Jae Sung Joo. Ki Kwang Sung is in charge of the hardware of the watch, and the specifications of the watch. Mason works on the design of the watch, and the end result is that the watch has received the iF design award, one of the most prestigious design awards. We are always learning, adapting, and evolving.
– ITU Telecom World 2015 (Entrepreneur Award)
– Get in the Ring 2016 (1st winner)
– Cannes Lions 2016 (2x Gold, 2x Shortlist)
– CLIO Awards 2016 (1x Gold, 1x Shortlist)
– LIA 2016(1xGrand Prix, 1xGold)
– Eurobest 2016 (2xGrand Prix, 3XGold)
– Webby Award 2017 (1xGold)
– ADC DE 2017 (1xGrand Prix)
– New York Festival 2017 (1xGold)
The Future Dot
Our goal is to put Dot on a public platform for universal access to those with limited visual ability. Due to the introduction of refreshable braille displays, many contents became accessible for blind people. However, only 5% of blind people worldwide have the privilege to own such devices because of issues involving the technology and price. Our company is working to end the lack of actuator technology that had been on demand for many years, and use the technology to develop a refreshable braille display and wearable device-to make a concept into happening so that we can try to diminish the invisible discrimination against blind people in information accessibility.