App Challenge Winners
18 September 2014 at 10:21 am
A free app designed for people with disability to help them navigate around museums, art galleries and cultural venues has won a major award in the ACCAN and Australian Human Rights Commission Apps For All Challenge.
The app called OpenMi Tours provides information to users at museums, art galleries and cultural venues in a variety of inclusive formats such as audio only, audio with captions, Auslan with captions, audio description as well as foreign languages.
The App has been developed by the Conexu Foundation – a partnership between people who are communication impaired, deaf, hard of hearing and the hearing.
The most accessible mainstream app went to ACCC Shopper – an app that provides useful consumer information to users and includes tools to keep copies of receipts developed by Australian Competition & Consumer Commission.
It can be used to set reminders for lay-bys, warranties and gift vouchers, write complaint letters to businesses or ask common shopping questions such as “when can I get a refund?”
The winners were awarded the inaugural Telstra Prize for their efforts in developing apps that are accessible to all consumers, including older Australians and those with disabilities.
Organisers say the awards raise awareness of the need to ensure smartphone applications are accessible to all users and that this must be taken into account in their design.
Prizes were handed out during a ceremony at ACCAN’s National Conference, Connecting Today’s Consumer.
“We’re pleased to reward developers who have ensured their apps are accessible and can be used by all Australians,”ACCAN Disability Policy Advisor, Wayne Hawkins said.
“With smartphone ownership continuing to grow, it’s important to remember older Australians and those with disabilities should not be left out of the digital world. The winners of the inaugural Apps For All Challenge are applauded for their efforts in achieving this and the exceptional standard which they have achieved.”
“The Australian Human Commission was very happy to be a part of this challenge, and I am thrilled to see such great apps be recognised for the first time in this way,” Acting Disability Commissioner Susan Ryan said.
Prizes for the winners included the Telstra Prize of $1500 in cash, promotion through Telstra’s social media and a one-off opportunity to participate in a mini-incubator experience with Telstra’s own in-house app developers and technology specialists.