Groundbreaking app makes dining out easier for the blind

Group photo from launch event.Tap My Dish logo.

If you live in Hong Kong, or you’re visiting Hong Kong, here’s a smartphone app you might like to download.

Jess Shek writes: Dining out could sometimes be daunting for the visually impaired. Oftentimes they have to rely on their friends or restaurant staff to read the menu to them aloud. Yet, it would seem asking too much should they wish their helpers to read out all the items on the menu.

In view of this, Hong Kong Blind Union launched “Tap My Dish” in January this year, a smartphone and tablet dining app that lists restaurants’ menus.

With this app, visually impaired persons can now order their meals with ease at many of the restaurants across Hong Kong independently. “It’s really a groundbreaking app. My memory is not that good and it’s pretty annoying to ask others to tell me what’s on the menu. Now I can use the app to choose my favourite dish and again be rest assured to place an order that I can afford,” said Kevin Chow, executive committee member of Hong Kong Blind Union.

The app uses various font sizes and colours to assist those with limited vision. It aims to service more than 170,000 visually impaired persons in Hong Kong, as well as their sighted counterparts. Currently, about 300 restaurants and eateries have partnered with the app. Hong Kong Blind Union hopes to have reached 500 by the end of the year.

“My wish is for all restaurants in the city to partner with the app very soon, rendering Hong Kong a diverse and inclusive hub of fine dining,” said Joby Wong, member of Hong Kong Blind Union.

Find out more about the app. Have a question? Feel free to contact Peggy Ko of Hong Kong Blind Union at peggyko@hkbu.org.hk.

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