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Image: Tokyo Metro

Tokyo Metro testing audio guidance system using QR codes for visually impaired passengers


Tokyo Metro has started testing an audio guidance system that can assist visually impaired passengers with directions in train stations. 

The user-friendly system has been installed at Shinkiba and Tatsumi stations along the Yurakucho subway line. Visually impaired commuters can receive audio directions by scanning a QR code installed on the Braille blocks with a smartphone camera. 

In 2018, the experiment was carried out at one station. This year, however, Tokyo Metro confirmed that the audio guidance system can effectively be used at multiple stations.

It's not uncommon for visually impaired commuters to get lost at bustling train stations when using Braille blocks alone. Based on the results of the tests, Tokyo Metro has announced plans to expand the installation of these QR-coded stickers in other stations as well.

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I’m intrigued to know how easy or difficult it is for the visually impaired to use a smart-phone.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Too bad Japan and 99% Japanese doesn't respect their own inventor Seiichi Miyake.

They all stick to American stuff so much like they worship them more than their own Gods.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Blindfold a metro guy and simulate an environment with a lot of background noise and have him test the system. I want to see him pull his smartphone while holding his white cane, find the scanning app on the phone, and then squat down and focus for the scan.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

how are they gonna see the qr codes....

5 ( +6 / -1 )

or train staff could just escort visually-impaired passengers. I understand Japan's inclination to use high-tech solutions to simple problems but sometimes simpler is better

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A step forward in the right direction. Of course, there will be teething problems, as with any new tech.

Invalid CSRF

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"how are they gonna see the qr codes..."


"I’m intrigued to know how easy or difficult it is for the visually impaired to use a smart-phone."

it is pretty easy. They can either use a refreshable braille display or a screen reader or others;

Here's the brilliant way blind people use touchscreen devices like smartphones


0 ( +0 / -0 )

@alwaysspeakingwisdom - that's a good link, though we could do better. A small handheld device that could be rented at the airport which would provide voice based interaction at the press of its one button on its side would be most useful.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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