My name is Mark Skelton and I am the ambassador for Talk Directs project iCare which was founded in April 2014. The aim of the project is to help the visually impaired community improve their daily lives with the help of digital technology, i.e. smartphone or tablet devices. I am very passionate about my role as I am registered blind myself and know only to well what a difference digital technology can make. If I didn't use a smart phone or tablet myself I would struggle to read a simple message or even write a short note. We have worked hard to make sure we can hopefully find a solution to help anyone with any level of visual impairment and have had some great success stories along the way.
In our stores we have an O2 Guru who has the technical knowledge on how to get the best out of a device so that people suffering from low vision can still communicate with family and friends. Simple options such as voice over functions and magnification settings can make a world of difference. They will also happily show people how to use apps that can increase the benefits of a device. For example, I use an app where I can download a talking book which is narrated by the author. On a standard phone I would not be able to do any of the above so making a simple phone call would be a huge struggle.
Since we started the project it has really helped people stay in contact and some of our clients have had secondary disabilities but we have always managed to find a solution for their needs. During the early period we have built up a great working relationship with Royal Society for the Blind, Yorkshire Guide Dogs and Action for the Blind. Our work with Action for the Blind saw Talk Direct be the first Yorkshire company ever win the 'see the capability not the disability award'. We currently visit all local visually impaired charities and support groups to show their service users just what we and technology can do to help them. These visits have proved tremendously popular and if you feel you may benefit from this service please get in touch.
Our main aim for the future is to continue working with these great companies and to provide support in our stores so the visually impaired can embrace technology so that it can help people in day to day life.
Recommended Android app - Blind Communicator
Joe our O2 Guru at the Rotherham s store demonstrates how to use the Blind Communicator app for Android devices.
O2 Guru - Brenden's Story
Our O2 Guru at the Dewsbury store Brenden Hoad shares his iCare experiences.READ MORE
BBC Radio Sheffield interview Talk Direct's Mark Skelton
Mark Skelton talks openly about losing his eye sight on the Rony Robinson show.READ MORE
Recommended Android app - Magnify
Jordon our O2 Guru at the Crossgates store demonstrates how to use the Magnify app for Android devices.READ MORE
Recommended Apple app - Boop light detector
Phil our O2 Guru at the Junction 32 Castleford store demonstrates how to use the Boop light detector app for Apple devices.READ MORE
Recommended Android app - Giganticon
Adam our O2 Guru at the Skipton store demonstrates how to use the Giganticon app for Android devices.READ MORE
Recommended Android app - Visor
Our O2 Guru Brendan demonstrates how to use the Visor app for Android devices.READ MORE
Project iCare working with partners Sheffield Royal Society for the Blind
Project iCare working with partners Sheffield Royal Society for the Blind to offer accessibility training to people with all levels of visual impairment.READ MORE
New SightPLUS technology trialled by Talk Direct
Talk Directs Project iCare Ambassador Mark Skelton, was invited to try out some fantastic new technology.READ MORE
Talk Direct's Mark Skelton visits the O2 Store of The Future in London
Talk Direct's Mark Skelton was recently invited to visit the O2 Store of The Future in London.READ MORE
Recommended iOs app - My O2
Marcus our O2 guru at Scarborough demonstrates how to use the my O2 app with Talkback.READ MORE
Recommended App - O2 Priority
Rebecca from our O2 store in Headingley demonstrates how to use the 02 Priority app.READ MORE