Over a year ago, I wrote about four different assistive keyboards available on iOS devices. The first keyboard I mentioned in the post was SwiftKey, a free keyboard app that adapts to the user. More recently, the same company has released SwiftKey Symbols, a symbol-based assistive communication app.
The Symbols keyboard is currently only available for Android devices and is “targeted at (but not limited to) young, non-verbal individuals with special needs.” Further, the beta app was developed to facilitate communication between individuals with autism (or other disorders) and their caregivers.
A lot of the current communication tools on the market are often too slow to select a particular image a child might choose. We realized that SwiftKey’s core prediction and personalization technology–which learns from each individual as they use it–would be a natural fit for people on the autistic spectrum who respond particularly well to routine-based activity…
It utilizes the same prediction technology found in the original SwiftKey. It also learns the pattern of each unique user to predict the symbol he/she will most likely use next, ultimately saving time and benefitting “individuals with learning disabilities to communicate faster and more easily.”
Features of SwiftKey Symbols Keyboard:
- Audio playback
- Symbol sentence builder and next symbol prediction
- Ability to add custom photos as categories or individual symbols
- Day and time specific predictions
- Runs on Android smartphones and tablets