Since summer is here, you’ve probably thought about taking that trip to the beach. If you are among the blind and visually impaired population, there are five gadgets for the beach that I do not recommend you leave without, as they will enhance your beach experience in numerous ways!
If you love relaxing by the waves and hearing some great tunes, I recommend you take the iPad along with you to the beach. The iPad will enable you to find just about any song you want. You can then download it and jam. You can even lie out and entertain yourself with the iPad’s many fun features and apps that are all accessible.
The price of the iPad will depend on what you want. The larger the storage capacity, the more it will cost. Furthermore, if you want the iPad to be 3G capable, which I strongly recommend, this will also add to the price. For instance, an iPad that has 16GB of storage space with 3G capability will cost $599; whereas the iPad without 3G capability will cost only $499. The 32GB iPad with 3G capability will cost $699, whereas the one without 3G capability will cost $599. The 64GB iPad with 3G capability will cost $799, whereas the one without 3G will cost $699.
Digital Talking Compass
It is very easy for you to get turned around on the beach and lose your way, especially if you are blind or visually impaired. You don’t have to allow this to stop you from enjoying the beach on your own because there are a number of solutions that you can employ that are guaranteed to help you find your way back. One solution that I employ is the Digital Talking Compass. I keep it with me, so I can keep my bearings. I know which direction I’m walking in, and then I remember the direction in which my compass must point, so I can successfully find my way off the beach and back to my dwelling place. Using this method of navigation has never failed me because not once was I ever lost. If you want to successfully and confidently navigate the beach, I urge you to get your hands on this compass. It can be purchased for a very decent price of $68.85 at Maxi Aids.
DM-4 Olympus Digital Recorder
We blind people love to capture some of our most precious moments on audio recording. After all, these audio recordings to us are what pictures and videos are to the sighted population. One of the most fabulous digital recorders that you can take to the beach with you to capture all of your finest moments is the DM-4 Olympus Digital Recorder. Not only does this recorder have talking menus, the menus can be access using voice activation. This digital recorder is also DAISY compatible, has a slot for an SD card, and can be connected to the computer via a USB adapter. The price for this particular digital recorder is $299, but let me tell you, it is worth every penny!
You never want to go to the beach without your cell phone. You always want to keep it nearby, just in case something urgent may come up, and you’ll need to get in touch with someone. Not to mention, you may need it if you are staying at a place that is not within walking distance from the beach and may need to call on a cab to take you back to your dwelling. This happened to me when I went to the beach in South Carolina. I was staying at the Plantation Resort, and it was easier for me to reach the beach by calling on a cab. The resort is huge, and the place where I was staying was far enough from the beach that it took a bit of time to get there on foot.
While some will still rely on old, antiquated cell phones, I do not recommend you do this. To get the most out of your phone and to make it work for you, I recommend that you get a smart phone. Smart phones are the only phones I’ll use because their features make my life so much easier, especially the GPS capability that most of them have. Smart phones typically cost anywhere between $300 to $500, and depending on which one you purchase, you may have to purchase Talks or Mobile Speak to make the phone accessible, which can cost you an additional $300 if you cannot get a deal on the software. Of course, smart phones, such as the Android smart phones and the iPhone do not require you to spend any additional money to obtain a screen reader to make the phone accessible.
At present, I prefer the Windows Mobile phones because that is what I currently use and am most comfortable with; however, I’m thinking of getting my hands on an Android phone in the near future. The glory of it is that there are a number of options for you to choose from, and you’ll have to purchase the one that best suits your needs. Just don’t go to the beach without a smart phone.
Water Proof Carrying Case
It is important that you protect all of your gadgets with a water proof carrying case. At the beach, there is always that danger that your technology may get wet. To prevent this, I recommend you purchase the water proof carrying cases made by Otterbox. Otterbox manufactures special carrying cases for all important gadgets for the beach. The cost for these cases is around $40.