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Tecla Shield

Contributed by Erin Swann, MSE, Assistive Technology Specialist, MDTAP

Back in the day, most phone-based communication happened over landline phones while the user was at home. But more recently, with the popularity of smartphones, most phone-based communication happens via cell phone call, text, email, Facebook, and a variety of other smartphone apps while the user is away from home and on the go.  For people with disabilities, it’s important to have access to a smartphone in order to have the ability to fully participate in current communication methods.

One piece of assistive technology that can help people with physical disabilities access a smartphone is called the Tecla Shied. The Tecla Shield is a small, portable device that allows the user to use switches or a joystick to access a smartphone, tablet, or computer.  The cost of the Tecla Shield (not including switches/joystick or mounting hardware) is $349.

Available to consumers with a variety of disabilities, the Tecla Shield can be a helpful product for many. Carolyn was a circus performer who experienced a trapeze accident resulting in a C4 spinal cord injury. She uses the Tecla Shield to text and email on the go and independently read books and magazines on her iPhone.  You can read more about her story here: Carolyn’s Story

If you think the Tecla Shield would be useful to you or someone you know, you can schedule a visit to our assistive technology loan library to see a demonstration. The Tecla Shield is available for short term loan (up to four weeks) if you would like to trial the device to see if it is something you would like to purchase.  To schedule a demo of the Tecla Shield, contact the Maryland Technology Assistance Program by calling 1-800-832-4827 or emailing mdtap@mdtap.org.

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