The client has been designing and supplying products to enhance the independence and quality of life for people with special needs for more than forty years. They are regarded as leaders in Electronic Assistive Technology (EAT), Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) and Environmental Control Systems (ECS) and are approved suppliers of Electronic Assistive Technology products and services to the NHS.
The brief was to work alongside the clients own software and electronic design team to develop a mechanical design for a portable, battery powered, fully featured robust personal computer and communications centre which would enable physically disabled users to maintain their independence by augmenting their own abilities without the intervention of a carer. The project was strongly supported by the client who contributed experience gained from evaluation of previous models.
This was a major project requiring the full extent of product design and prototyping design services but it became obvious to the design team that other technology was fast overtaking the technology available to the client and it was decided not to commit to tooling.