Safe Mobile Navigation Service for the Elderly and Disabled
The E-adept Project includes a digitalized road network developed to facilitate mobile navigation with the aim of giving the elderly and people with disabilities improved access to their city. New solutions for navigation, travel planning and alarms are now providing the foundation for better mobile services.
E-adept originally grew out of an accessibility project run by the City of Stockholm’s Traffic Administration Office in 2006. The aim of the project was to make the city more accessible to all, including the elderly and people with disabilities. Today, a mobile navigation service based on E-adept has been successfully tested in Stockholm, and additional, similar projects are currently under way in several other Swedish municipalities.
E-adept includes a detailed road database designed for pedestrians in which all traffic obstacles are registered – from current roadwork to bushes and lampposts. Using the road database as a foundation, new mobile navigation services can be created that give the elderly and the disabled both support and a sense of security as they go about their daily activities.
The service tested in Stockholm was an audio-based navigation service, which, with the help of built-in GPS navigation and step-counter in a cell phone, gave visually impaired people (among others) the ability to move freely around the city.
A starting point and desired destination for a planned walk were entered into the system and the user’s cell phone suggested a route. The user was also guided by a voice that warned of obstacles during their walk.
As distinct from existing navigation systems, E-adept provides more exact positioning and, most importantly, individualized guidance past obstacles along sidewalks, footpaths in parks and at crosswalks. Plans for the continued development of E-adept include functions for indoor navigation, virtual signs and alarms.
E-adept’s main financiers are PTS, the City of Stockholm, the Swedish Transport Administration, the City of Malmö and VINNOVA. Astando AB, the Teknikdalen Foundation and the cooperative association Regis ekonomiska förening are also contributing to the project.