Tech that guides the visually impaired around supermarkets targets UK launch

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Blind shopper

A company that has successfully implemented a technology innovation to help guide visually impaired people round Israel’s largest supermarket chain is targeting UK grocery businesses.

RightHear, installed in Israeli supermarket chain Shufersal, which has hundreds of branches, is a Bluetooth beacon-guided system that provides customers with audio commentary via a smartphone app to help them navigate.

The app alerts users whenever they are near a RightHear-enabled store. When users approach the store, they are told where the entrance is and what the opening hours are.

Audio descriptions alert them to various areas, aisles and shelves. Users are directed to the checkouts, and the exit once they have paid.

Stores can install the matchstick-size beacons by attaching them to the wall with a sticker.

“Managers can set the administrator dashboard to a maximum level of detail that even allows the user to find a specific part of the shelf where the products he wants are,” RightHear chief executive Idan Meir said.

The business had launched in the US about two weeks ago and was planning to enter more countries, he added.

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