Using low cost AAC Apps vs. dedicated AAC devices (Part I)

From the last posting, a few comments were brought up about the pros and cons on AAC  apps on iDevices vs. the AAC manufacturers’ devices such as DynaVox. Some of other comments that I found on internet include:

Pros:
– apps are inexpensive and easy to get it as well as easier to learn.
– Apps on iDevices may be more attractive since it offer users a multi purpose  tool for their daily life or activities (music, games, e-mail, GPS) in addition to fulfilling their basic needs.

Cons:
– In most cases, you have limited technical support. Apps by their low-cost and mass marketed nature have no provision for specific AAC technical support.
– It is hard to identify the quality communication sets and customize the apps to meet each individual’s needs.  Family has to learn independently without educated technical guidance.
– Since iDevices are multi-use tools, they are not qualified for insurance funding.

However, I have noticed more AAC manufactures have started offering AAC apps on iDevices. Has anyone used these apps with your students or children? Has anyone received
good supports on apps from manufactures? Has anyone found any other AAC apps to be helpful with students?

Sono Flex
Cost: $99.99
Sono Flex from Tobii ATI and Go Talk Now from Attainment Company offer apps on iDevices.
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sono-flex/id463697022?mt=8

Sono Flex app

Main features:
– a comprehensive symbol based AAC vocabulary app for the iPhone, iPad and Tobii
Communicator that turns symbols and text into clear speech.
– pre-configured over 800 words and phrases.
– some 50 pre-installed contextual communication categories with groupings of words and phrases relating to specific situations. (e.g. “morning circle”, “getting dressed”, “personal” and “playground”)

Go Talk Now:
$79.99
GoTalk Now is an AAC app for iPad, which supports from beginner to experienced .
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/gotalk-now/id454176457?mt=8

Go Talk Now app

Main features:
• 1-25 locations per page
• Use pictures from your iPad camera, photo library, or the built-in internet search
• Customizable backgrounds, boarders, and text.
• Auditory cues throughout give a brief verbal reinforcement before the selection of the desired button
• Customizable navigation tools can make the interface as simple or complex as the user can handle.  (for more details, http://attainmentcompany.com/featured/GoTalkNow/ )

More apps
7 Assistive Communication Apps in iPad App Store
http://blog.friendshipcircle.org/2011/02/07/7-assistive-communication-apps-in-the-ipad-app-store/


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78 Responses to Using low cost AAC Apps vs. dedicated AAC devices (Part I)

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