Guest Author - Dean Ingalls
Talking products provide an accessible method for visually disabled individuals to complete tasks the sighted do without much effort. One such task is finding or keeping the time of day. A variety of talking watches makes finding the right watch a process of trial and error. This article contains a Reizen Analog Water Resistant Talking Watch Review, which is the watch I purchased and presently learning to use.
The Reizen watch is advertised as, “Great for visually impaired/blind.” I wanted to know if the watch is a good or bad purchase for all visually impaired/blind individuals.
Personal Comments: Pros
1. The price is very reasonable for the number of functions and the quality of the watch. Cost – twenty-five dollars with shipping thirty-one dollars ordered from Maxi Aids website.
2. The watch offers all necessary functions needed in a watch including water resistant, easy time access (three ways to tell time) and clear pleasant female voice.
3. The watchband fits securely into the watch and onto the wrist. The watchband is very durable.
4. The watch comes with batteries included.
1. I do not like the way the watch fits around the wrist. A section sticks out from the watch on either side leading to the area where the watchband is connected. The area is ridged and immovable making the watch non-flexible. The non-flexibility causes the pressing of buttons changing the watch settings when putting on or taking off a coat or long sleeve shirt while wearing the watch. This action is very annoying!
2. Programming the watch is difficult. No directions are available for reading by a blind person and written directions sent with product are extremely small and difficult to understand. I asked my sister and two sighted friends for help and all three remarked on how difficult the directions are for them to understand. Both of my friends experienced problems explaining how to program the watch.
3. I have owned the watch for a month and still have trouble understanding how to program the time, set an alarm, and turn off hourly chime and change alarm sound. The watch provides a very short time length for setting time of day and alarm making the actions difficult for a visually impaired/blind person to complete. You must quickly set time before the watch moves out of the time set mode otherwise you must start over.
4. The watch feels big and bulky on my wrist and weighs more than other talking watches I have owned in the past.
5. The analog and LCD display time functions do not assist a visually impaired person unless you have vision strong enough to see small print or use a magnifying glass to enlarge time displays. I am unable to use the analog and LCD time displays therefore, the functions do not help me.
6. A product manual PDF file link appears on the Maxi Aids site but does not contain information helpful to me for setting time and alarm or learning the design and location of the buttons. My sighted friends stated the buttons are located in a confusing format and difficult to explain. The buttons are labeled B1, B2, B3 and B4 but not in a helpful format. The product manual on the website does provide some information about alarm sound and setting but very limited and nothing about button functions. The PDF file does contain important information concerning the watch such as specifications, cleaning and cautions for watch use.
7. The watch contains two different batteries and requires servicing by qualified personnel for changing which could mean paying a service fee.
I do not recommend the watch for visually impaired people who have severe limited vision or no vision. The watch is not helpful to someone who must use only the talking voice to keep time. The difficulty programming the watch is too great for severely limited or blind individuals. A blind person with lots of experience dealing with programming talking products may find a way to set the watch but the unusable analog face and LCD display makes the watch an unattractive purchase.
I would recommend the watch for a person who can see the traditional face of a watch or a small LCD display. Individuals who can see to watch face would find this watch helpful and of high quality for the cost of the watch.
I used my own money to purchase the talking watch. I have not received any financial compensation from Maxi Aids or Reizen for writing this review. I am a member of the Maxi Aids affiliate program, which means I only receive a commission if you purchase a watch using the website or product information links appearing at the bottom of this article.