Microsoft has updated the set of languages supported by its Seeing AI app for iOS to include five another in addition to English. The app, launched in 2017, uses artificial intelligence and computer vision to narrate the world for the visually impaired.
The update introduces support for Dutch, French, German, Japanese, and Spanish. This means wider availability of the app to millions of users with visual impairment or low vision across the world, Microsoft says.
Regarding the new improvements, Saqib Shaikh, Microsoft's Project Lead and Co-Founder of Seeing AI, said:
“More than the technology itself, the thing that has really touched me is the way that people have taken the features of Seeing AI and incorporated it into their personal lives. I get the most joy hearing from customers about how they’re using Seeing AI.”
Seeing AI helps visually impaired users get a description of the world around them by pointing their phone's camera at someone or something. The camera app uses “channels" to read out printed text and describe objects. The Short Text channel reads text as soon as it's seen by the camera and the Documents channel reads larger articles of printed text. Earlier this year, Microsoft introduced new capabilities to the Seeing AI app including the ability to explore photos by tapping on them.