TechOWL’s TikTok channel is getting busy for the holidays!
The PA AT Act Program is using the popular micro-video blog platform to advise viewers on accessible holiday wrapping techniques and AT gift ideas. AT3 Center News and Tips is always looking out for devices of interest to the State and Territory AT Act programs and now is a time when programs highlight AT stocking stuffers. Naturally, TechOWL’s 12-second, “Assistive Tech Holiday Gifts,” caught this blog’s attention (embedded below).
The video (22K views to date!) splices together clips from some of TechOWL’s recent TikTok gadget posts and conveys joy and love for AT. But, of course, it goes by very quickly!
Below, AT3 Center slows things down to spotlight a few of these stylish devices and provide links for further exploration. Thank you TechOWL for this unwitting partnership!
One. Eone Watch
The eone watch is a beautiful example of universal design. It is tactile with a ballbearing that rotates in a circular slot through the minutes and hours (also perceivable with touch). Everyone can read and enjoy this watch face. As the company’s website says, “Designed for touch when you can’t easily use sight: during a meeting, in a movie theatre, or due to a vision impairment. Designed for sight with eye-catching style.” $285 – $315 on Amazon. Check out TechOWL’s TikTok video on the eone.
Trudeau Graviti salt and pepper mills are one-handed tools that start grinding once the mill is tilted. Another example of universal design, this beautiful mill is for anyone, but a game-changer for those needing one-handed kitchen aides or mills that don’t require manual rotation to grind. The mill makes it easy to judge when a refill is necessary with its clear window and has an LED light to help users see where the spice lands. Grind fineness is adjustable. Requires 6 AAA batteries. $24.99 at Bed, Bath & Beyond.
Three. Laser Keyboard
Laser Bluetooth keyboards project onto any suitable surface and eliminate the need to depress mechanical keys, registering, instead, a user’s placement of fingers on the lit grid. TechOWL notes in this laser keyboard TikTok video that this may give relief to users with carpal tunnel syndrome and similar conditions. Lightweight and portable, the device doubles as a stand for a smartphone. Some include a music-making app. Laser keyboards range in price from $45 to $110 on Amazon.
Four. Xbox Adaptive Controller
Microsoft changed the gaming landscape when it brought this adaptive controller to the mainstream… and made it beautiful! Everything from the packaging to the device design is gorgeous and accessible. The Xbox adaptive controller was created in collaboration with AbleGamers and features built-in big button switches but also 19 3.5 mm input jacks and two USB ports for customizable switch accessibility (read a detailed review of the Xbox Adaptive Controller’s features). Read AT3 Center’s post about this innovative controller.
Certain hard-of-hearing individuals may find success with bone conduction headphones. For everyone else they provide a way to both listen to music and stay aware of your surroundings, an advantage for persons with vision impairments (TechOWL notes in this TikTok video about bone conduction headphones), as well as athletes. The headphones rest on cheekbones instead of inside the ear canal which also makes them an option for individuals who cannot or prefer not to use conventional earbuds. Be aware: they do heat up with continuous use. Learn more from Popular Mechanics, “Best Bone Conduction Headphones,” (there’s a version for swimming with a built-in MP3 player!) Learn about bone conduction hearing devices for children.
Six. Tap Strap Keyboard
The Tap Strap provides wearable alternative computer access. It allows users to type on any surface as well as navigate a remote screen using air gestures that are customizable. “Type in any language, trigger hotkeys and build custom macros,” advertizes the site. The device allows for one-handed typing (using a tapping code that must be learned). Tap Strap might be useful for users who are blind or have a limb difference and others, notes TechOWL in this Tap Strap 2 TikTok video.
Remember to try before you buy!
AT Act Programs loan devices with hefty price tags to prevent costly purchase errors by AT users, professionals, friends, and family. Find your State or Territory AT Act Program and learn what’s in their short-term device loan library. Ready to buy? Check out these online AT shopping tips from Ability Tools (the CA AT Act Program).
Find more AT gift ideas from State AT Act Programs:
Listen to INDATA’s Holiday Show Part 1 featuring seven device gift ideas.
Don’t forget to Hack a Toy for the Holidays (everything you need to adapt a mechanical toy from AT3 Center).