The charity has worked with Amazon to ensure those with sight loss can access information through the voice activated device.
The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has teamed up with Amazon to offer information about sight loss through Alexa.
Amazon Alexa users will now be able to hear RNIB information via voice commands such as “Alexa, how do I register as sight impaired or severely sight impaired? Another typical command is “Alexa, what should I do if I think I’m losing my sight?”
The charity is also offering specific advice on how digital technology can support those with sight loss, through commands such as “Alexa, what assistive technology do blind people use?”
The partnership involves Alexa directly offering information from the RNIB’s Sight Loss Advice Service.
The move has been made to improve the accessibility of online information, with the charity’s research showing that sight loss remains a major barrier to accessing the internet.
More than half of blind or partially sighted people say that sight loss is a barrier to using the internet and around one in six say they are unable to make the most of new technology.
“Voice assistant technology is playing an ever-increasing role in transforming the lives of blind and partially sighted people,” said RNIB Director of Services David Clarke.
He said that many people living with sight loss find devices such as Alexa easier to use than screen based technology.
“Voice assistants can enable independence, helping to break down accessibility barriers to a more inclusive society,” Clarke added.
“By using this technology to increase the reach of our own resources, we are ensuring that people can immediately get essential information about sight conditions, their rights, and the support available, simply by asking out loud.”
Other RNIB backed tips available through Alexa include advice on protecting eyesight and supporting others who are blind or partially sighted.
“We love hearing feedback from customers about how they use Alexa throughout their day – whether that’s listening to music, setting alarms and timers, or making an announcement at home that dinner is ready,” added Dennis Stansbury, Alexa UK Country Manager.
“We are delighted that customers can now access information from the RNIB website using voice technology.”