The Pandemic has escalated the communication problem for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH). Interviews with DHH individuals in the U.S. and Europe tell us that wearing masks has made it impossible for them to communicate. Most DHH individuals depend on lip reading and facial expressions to know what is being said. Bringing the Vü devices to market will enable DHH individuals to communicate even with masks on. When mask mandates disappear, Vü devices will be relied on as individuals with cochlear implants, hearing aids, and deaf people suffer everyday communicating with their doctor, drive-thrus, traffic stops, work, family/friends and social events. AI technology is here and our smart devices are the answer for the pain of being left out.
Assistive hearing devices focus on audio solutions for the DHH such as cochlear implants and hearing aids with connectivity to smartphones and other tech. They are expensive and only partially subsidized by insurance or Government aid. The two hurdles for these types of solutions are 1) the cost and 2) the limitations of using finite analog-digital to interface with a defective human hearing system, i.e. hearing aids do not restore normal hearing. While our competitors provide a partial solution, Vü offers a complete solution for the DHH to join in the chat anytime, anywhere. Our real-time speech services keep user conversations private and secure. Our differentiator is real time chat with cues to where to look to see the next speaker.
The $10,000 award will be used as follows: $2,500 to increase Marketing lead generation to build our customer base; $2,500 to add additional hours to our Community Outreach facilitator to host one on one and group Peer Support online for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community. The remaining $5,000 will be used to help create a demo display and marketing materials for vendor conferences to showcase our technology in 2022.