waytoB is a smartphone and smartwatch navigation solution that helps those with higher support needs to find their way around independently. In Ireland, there are over 150,000 people with a learning or intellectual disability, with estimates putting the number globally as high as 200 million. A major problem for this user group is finding their way without assistance. It prevents a large number of people from doing things on their own, even in adulthood, as navigation tools are not appropriate due to their complicated interfaces.
waytoB’s solution lets a connected partner pre-programme set routes on a smartphone or desktop, which allows the navigator’s smartwatch to elegantly guide them via turn by turn directions. This is possible due to a visual and haptic language co-developed by the researchers and the users. The app also integrates walking instructions with public transport and allows a partner to live-track the user’s location, heart-rate and battery usage.
waytoB was invented by Talita Holzer Saad and Robbie Fryers — two recent graduates from Trinity College Dublin. The pair won the World Summit Award in 2019, the People’s Choice Award at the 2018 Tech4Good Awards, the Irish leg of the 2017 James Dyson Award, and the Universal Design Grand Challenge from the National Disability Authority in 2016 for their work on waytoB. They have been through the EIT Health Validator programme, and the Social Entrepreneurs Ireland Academy. They are currently supported by Enterprise Ireland through the Commercialisation Fund.