Update to Predictable enables people with MND/ALS to use their own voice

October 28, 2014 in Education (E)

[prMac.com] London, United Kingdom - Therapy Box is pleased to introduce Predictable 4, the newest version of the award winning app used around the world by people with MND and other neurological disabilities to be able to communicate. Available in 8 languages, the top grossing app has been an essential aid for people with complex communication and physical disabiltiies.

This latest release breaks new ground via the integration of ModelTalker. Implementing ModelTalker voices into usable solutions is a brand new and unexplored field that has wider implications than someone just being able to use an app to communicate. Predictable 4 is the first iOS app to utilise ModelTalker voices for AAC, greatly influencing the lives of those with communication difficulties. The ModelTalker project is a long-term research and development effort from the Nemours Speech Research Laboratory at the Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Delaware.

Peter Pierce former DJ, BBC Golf soundman, and now living with MND, is a Predictable user and had also previously banked a ModelTalker voice in 2009 when he recognized his voice would soon deteriorate. Fearing that Peter would have a "Stephen Hawking type, robot synthesized voice," he quickly entered the process of creating a ModelTalker voice while he still had time. Using Predictable for about 20 months, Peter has found it ever more helpful as his speaking ability gradually declines as well as the onset of tiredness often associated with MND. Peter summed up his perspective on using Predictable as "liberating".

Rebecca Bright, co-founder of Therapy Box adds: "Everyone's voice is personal; it defines who we are and is part of what makes us unique as humans. Previously, those who can no longer speak, for whatever reason, could use an 'off the shelf' communication tool featuring a generic voice, which in many cases does not take into account the age or location of the individual. Stephen Hawking, for example, has an American accent. The latest update or our apps means these people can use their own voice, so that they continue to sound like an individual when they sadly lose the power to communicate verbally. We are thrilled to bring this game changer to market - and at an accessible price point to ensure minimal barriers for those who most need it."

New features:
* Integration of ModelTalker voices
* New fresh user interface
* New voices from Nuance for added choice of quality voices
* Skype integration to aid connectivity
* News feeds for topical conversations
* Thematic dictionaries for educational settings for specialist subjects
* Link to YouTube and iTunes to share music and movies in conversation

The ModelTalker project is a long-term research and development effort from the Nemours Speech Research Laboratory at the Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Delaware intended to provide intelligible and natural-sounding personal voices for users of augmentative communication devices. SRL is one of the laboratories within the Nemours Center for Pediatric Auditory and Speech Sciences (CPASS).* Enhanced scanning features optimized for iOS8.

Device Requirements:
* Phone, iPad, and iPod touch
* Requires iOS 7.0 or later
* 667 MB

Pricing and Availability:
Predictable 4.0 is $159.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Education category.

Therapy Box is a communication technology business that specialises in creative and affordable communication and therapy apps for people of all ages and abilities. Its flagship products are Predictable, an award-winning app designed to provide a voice to someone who is unable to use their own, and ChatAble, an app that allows users to create symbol based-grids to aid communication, primarily for those with difficulties including autism, aphasia, motor neurone disease and apraxia. Therapy Box was founded by speech therapist Rebecca Bright and telecoms expert Swapnil Gadgil. Therapy Box has been the recipient of numerous awards including a 2014 Queen's Award for Enterprise (Innovation), a 2013 NatWest everywoman Iris award, a 2014 WIRED Start Up Pitch Winner and Pitch@Palace Finalist. All Material and Software (C) Copyright 2014 Therapy Box. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. Other trademarks and registered trademarks may be the property of their respective owners.


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