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September 10, 2013

Sprint offers new cellphone for visually impaired consumers

The Kyocera Kona compact flip phone is the first phone to offer spoken descriptions for Internet browsing, Overland Park-based Sprint said. The device describes what is highlighted on the screen and works with menus, messaging, contacts, missed calls, notifications and other functions.

Sprint Corp. this week is introducing a cellphone for visually impaired consumers that offers spoken descriptions for Internet browsing.

The Kyocera Kona compact flip phone is the first phone to offer the translation service, Overland Park-based Sprint said. The device offers oral descriptions of navigation, which describes what is highlighted on the screen and works with menus, messaging, contacts, missed calls, notifications and other functions.

Other features include variable speed text to speech service, “in case of emergency” and 911 shortcuts, and a keyboard with well-defined buttons.

It is available through Sprint’s direct sales Web and telephone channels and will be in Sprint’s other retail channels beginning Friday.

The Kona is available free after a $50 mail-in rebate. A two-year service agreement is required.

According to the National Federation of the Blind, more than 6.5 million people reported some form of visual disability in 2011.

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