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Enhancing Accessibility: The Power of Braille QR Codes

Enhancing Accessibility: The Power of Braille QR Codes

Have you ever been out of cash and saved by an online payment? Then, just thank the person who invented the QR code. Nowadays we all are hugely dependent on QR codes. Be it for paying cash or scanning some information, QR code has a broad range of coverage. It is a digital shortcut to which we are accustomed. But have you ever wondered if we blend Braille in QR codes then how will it be? This is where a crucial question arises: are these codes accessible to everyone?

People with visual impairments may face challenges while accessing QR codes with their phones. However, with time, advancements in technology have evolved to mitigate this issue, such as the invention of Braille QR codes.

In this blog, we will have a brief discussion about the Braille QR codes and witness how they have increased accessibility among visually impaired individuals.

What is a QR Code?

Basics of QR Codes

A QR code, a short form of quick response code, is a type of two-dimensional matrix barcode first designed in the year of 1994 in Japan’s automotive industries. Unlike traditional barcodes that hold information horizontally, QR codes store data in both dimensions. When scanned using a smartphone or QR code reader, the code can instantly link to various types of data, such as websites, contact information, and multimedia content.

Common Uses of QR Codes

QR codes have quickly gained widespread adoption across various sectors due to their versatility and ease of use. Retail stores rely on them for product look-ups, contactless payments, and menu management, while hospitality venues utilize them for check-ins and menu creation; Healthcare facilities use them for patient information and medical records management while marketing campaigns, event management activities, and even on personal business cards make use of QR codes as a vital communication channel.

Introduce Braille QR Codes Now

What Are Braille QR Codes?

Braille QR codes are accessible adaptations of traditional QR codes that integrate braille characters alongside the standard visual pattern, making these accessible adaptations suitable for visually impaired individuals without needing visual assistance in reading them and interacting with them. Braille QRs typically feature raised dots representing braille characters, providing information about its purpose or content.

How Braille QR Codes Work

A braille QR code involves integrating raised braille dots with visual QR codes to form a hybrid code produced through special printers capable of embossing braille onto its surface. Once encountered by visually impaired persons, these braille QR codes allow them to feel their surroundings by physically feeling braille text that corresponds with the context or instructions provided within. Once they scan it with their smartphone equipped with a screen reader software application, they are then able to gain access to digital information embedded within.

Understanding QR Code Accessibility & Its Importance

Accessibility Challenges with Standard QR Codes

QR codes present significant accessibility difficulties for visually impaired individuals who rely heavily on touch and auditory feedback to interpret visual-only QR codes, making interpretation difficult without tactile or auditory cues from others. As a result, using QR codes often requires assistance from others for independence and information access purposes limiting independence and access rights for these users.

Benefits of Accessible QR Codes

Accessible QR codes, such as braille QR codes, can provide numerous advantages. First and foremost, they enable visually impaired individuals to become independent by providing access to information without assistance; they foster inclusivity by encouraging full participation with their surroundings; in addition, accessible QR codes improve user experiences overall and support more inclusive societies.

Creating and Implementing Braille QR Codes

Steps for Generating Braille QR Codes

To create braille QR codes, below are three methods that will guide your approach to doing so:

Start With Generating Visual QR Codes: A QR code generator will generate standard visual QR codes which you can then add your data onto.

Add Braille Text: Incorporate braille characters into the design while taking care not to obscure its scannable pattern.

Employ Specialized Printers: Use printers that have braille embossers capable of embossing braille onto QR Code surfaces for optimal results.

Test for Accessibility: Verify that braille can be read by touch and that the QR codes can be accurately scanned before deployment in desired areas, such as products, signs, or information panels.

Implement Braille QR Codes Effectively

Here is an introduction to how best practices for Implementing Braille QR Codes are applied:

  • Visibility and Reachability: Locate braille QR codes at accessible heights and locations.
  • Clear Instructions: Provide clear tactile or auditory instructions on how to use braille QR codes.
  • Durability: Make sure all materials used for braille QR codes can withstand regular tactile use without cracking under strain.
  • Regular Updates: For maximum effectiveness and relevance, update information linked with QR codes at least every six months to keep it fresh and relevant.

Real-World Applications of Braille QR Codes

Here are some real-life examples of how QR Codes can give access to information to people who are disabled:

1. Accessing information about products

Popular chocolate brands like KitKat and Hershey’s have implemented QR codes on their wrappers. The list of ingredients printed on the packaging is usually too small to be read by visually impaired people.

Through QR Codes, customers can scan the QR Codes and browse the content more easily on smartphones. Also, the text-to-speech feature can be used by them on their phones.

This simple change allows consumers to access more information about products and will enable consumers to learn about allergens and ingredients promptly.

2. Art and museums that are include all

Visually impaired people rely heavily on their hearing to navigate and communicate in the environment around them.

The National Museum of Scotland is hosting an exhibit that examines “What inspired Walter Scott’s stories,” including audio QR codes. Visitors could scan the QR Codes and listen to the readings of poems that relate to the objects in the exhibit and be an integral part of their experience.

It is also possible to use these Audio QR codes to guide visitors around the museum, allowing visitors to explore in their own time.

3. Making sign language accessible

For those with hearing impairments, QR Codes that direct them to either text or videos in sign language can assist them in gaining access to information.

It can also be used in schools to help students with materials in sign language.

Final thoughts

Braille QR codes represent a breakthrough in making digital information available and accessible for visually impaired people. By incorporating braille with traditional QR codes, we can increase independence, inclusivity, and access to information for all. Businesses and organizations are strongly advised to embrace braille QR codes not only to comply with accessibility standards but also to create more inclusive environments for everyone involved.

Braille Music and More works on the inclusivity of visually impaired society and promotes braille transcription services. Visit our website to know more.

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