TouchChat HD for iPad® / iPod® / iPhone® ($149.99 USD + tax) is a full-featured communication solution for individuals who have difficulty using their natural voice. TouchChat is designed for individuals with Autism, Down Syndrome, ALS, apraxia, stroke, or other conditions that affect a person’s ability to use natural speech.
TouchChat provides both English and Spanish options in one universal app supporting iPhone®, iPod®, and iPad®.
TouchChat fits into the category of assistive technology known as Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) and includes features that were previously only available in much more expensive dedicated devices. Words, phrases and messages are spoken with a built-in voice synthesizer or by playing a recorded message. Various English and Spanish synthesized voices are available, allowing the user to choose a voice that fits their own personality.
TouchChat also has a unique feature whereby one can simply tilt the device to make the message expand to fill the screen in large letters. This feature allows a person to communicate silently or in a noisy environment.
TouchChat gives an individual the ability to navigate through page sets and speak messages. Page sets are linked pages, each of which is divided into a number of buttons. The buttons are programmed to have specific actions, such as speaking a message, navigating to a different page, changing the volume or clearing the display. Various page sets are included with TouchChat:
Each page set targets individuals with different communication needs. Additional page sets, including WordPower™, Gateway©, and Pixon™ are available as in-app purchases.
Text generated with TouchChat pages can be shared on social media or via iMessage® and email using a wireless connection. Generate a message, push on the text window and choose a service. Additionally, text can be copied to/from TouchChat and other applications so it can be spoken out loud..
The pages, grid layout, buttons, messages, and symbols are fully customizable. Buttons can be copied and pasted into a different location or rearranged by simply dragging them to the desired new location. The styling of a button (colors, borders, fonts) can also be copied and pasted into another button.
Provided page sets can be modified to create new custom page sets. Select from over 45 button actions and nearly 40,000 Symbolstix® symbols* when creating new buttons. You can also choose to use an existing image or take a photo with the built-in camera. Additionally, gestures can be used to navigate to new pages, speak messages, etc.
*Please note: PCS© symbols are only compatible with the TouchChat app if PCS is also purchased in TouchChat as an in-app purchase.
Button activation timing can be adjusted to meet the needs and capabilities of the user. Adjustments include button dwell time and button release time. Buttons can also be configured to activate on release.
Users can program buttons to play audio files such as music from the media library or videos from the camera roll or a YouTube™ link.
Once programming is complete, be sure to protect custom files. Vocabulary files can be imported and exported to a computer through iTunes® file sharing, DropBox™ or Google Drive™. TouchChat also enables users to subscribe to iShare and store custom files for safe keeping (not available to customers residing in the European Union).