About Code Factory
Founded in 1998 and headquartered in Terrassa/Barcelona, Spain, Code Factory is the global leader committed to the development of products designed to eliminate barriers to the accessibility of mobile technology for the blind and visually impaired. Today, Code Factory is the leading provider of screen readers, screen magnifiers, and Braille interfaces for the widest range of mainstream mobile devices including Symbian-based and Windows Mobile-powered Smartphones as well as Pocket PC phones and PDAs. Its product line is the only one to support phones working on the GSM, CDMA and WCDMA networks. Code Factory's success lies in giving excellent customer support and in responding immediately to the needs of its end users.
Among Code Factory’s customers are well known organizations like ONCE, and carriers such as TMN, Vodafone, SFR, Bouygues Telecom and AT&T. The company also collaborated with leading TTS providers and Braille manufacturers, thus enabling Code Factory to provide excellent text-to-speech technology in many languages for Mobile Speak products, and to incorporate support for over twenty wireless Braille devices into the software.
Moving Accessibility Forward!
Code Factory’s mission has always been centered on two key objectives: innovation and responsiveness. Throughout the history of the company, it has followed a path of developing products that aimed to set new standards in accessibility, but always stayed in line with what the target market needed and wanted.
Its first product line focused on the development of truly accessible educational computer games for the blind and visually impaired. Initially carried in Spain by ONCE (Organización Nacional de Ciegos Españoles), Europe’s largest blindness organization, the success of this first foray into the accessibility market quickly led to international sales and the development of accessible adventure and entertainment computer games that also gained popularity among blind children and their families.
In 2003, Code Factory expanded the scope of their line of accessible products by turning its attention to giving people with vision impairment an intuitive and user-friendly way of using mainstream mobile phones. Mobile Accessibility was the first screen access software application for Symbian-based mobile phones running on the Series 60 platform. It quickly became the preferred choice of people who wanted to use the basic functions of their phone without having to learn many commands that was typical of screen reading programs for the desktop computers. The design of the simple interface of Mobile Accessibility proved how much Code Factory valued the needs of the intended users of its products, thus taking accessibility a step forward from the norm of accessible but not entirely user-friendly solutions.
In the span of just four years subsequent to this initial success in the mobile technology field, Code Factory has released the following products that have constantly held leading positions in the global market:
- Mobile Speak for Symbian Phones (launched in 2004) – A full-fledge screen reader for Symbian Series 60 phones that is today’s most comprehensive speech and Braille access solution featuring unparalleled multilingual text-to-speech technology with over 80 TTS voices, and undisputed support for Braille devices, Braille languages, and input and output Braille grades.
- Mobile Magnifier for Symbian Phones (launched in 2005) – A full-screen magnification application that is the only one to offer font and graphics smoothing, easy cursor-tracking, and enlargement of status icons that make use of small mobile screens intuitive and flexible. Nokia, the global leader in mobile communications, was very much impressed by this product that they requested Code Factory to release a lighter version called Mobile Magnifier Lite to be released for the Nokia ESeries phones (launched in 2007).
- Mobile Speak for Pocket PCs (launched in 2005) – A powerful screen reader for the Windows Mobile Pocket PC platform running on personal digital assistants and PDA-phone convergence devices. It uniquely makes use of the Pocket PC touch screen to give users ready access to the device through commands that can be performed by different taps on areas near the four corners of the screen that a blind user can easily locate by touch. Just like its counterpart on the Symbian platform, this access solution brings accessibility through speech and Braille, is unrivaled in its support for more than a hundred mainstream devices, and provides seamless compatibility with numerous built-in and 3rd-party applications. With this release, Code Factory became the first company to make it possible for the blind and visually impaired to enjoy full access to mobile phones based on the CDMA network.
- Mobile Magnifier for Pocket PCs (launched in 2006) – The world’s first and only screen magnification software for the Windows Mobile Pocket PC platform. Apart from featuring different zoom levels, font smoothing, several color schemes, and cursor-tracking and text-panning functions, it also features a first-of-its-kind magnifier lens that can be manipulated via the Pocket PC touch screen using the stylus.
- Mobile Speak for Windows Mobile Smartphones (launched in 2006) – The world’s first ever screen reader for the Windows Mobile Standard/Smartphone platform. While competing products released after this innovative screen reader were busy inaccurately claiming to be the first, Code Factory ventured to make this product more than just a screen access solution by incorporating support for the next operating system even when that platform version was still in its early beta phase at Microsoft, the ability to read the most commonly used graphical icons, an intuitive command structure with different layouts so as to overcome the limitation of few available keys on standard phone keypads, and features important to blind people such as the reading of electronic Braille files and bookmarking functions in the media player. With this new screen reader in the product portfolio, the number of different models of mainstream mobile phones that Code Factory supports has hit the 200 mark, an unsurpassed achievement up to this day.
- Mobile Magnifier for Windows Mobile Smartphones (launched in 2007) – The first and only screen magnification program for the Windows Mobile Standard/Smartphone platform. Like its Symbian and Pocket PC counterparts, this application magnifies up to 16x, smoothes font and graphics, has an auto text-panning option, offers a wide selection of color schemes, and employs many other screen visibility enhancement functions.
- Mobile Tools (launched from 2005 onwards) – A suite of applications that can turn the mobile device into a portable utility for daily practical use (e.g., as a color recognizer), accessing books wherever and whenever (e.g., as a digital book reader), assisting the blind during travel (e.g., a GPS-based mobility aid), and combining entertainment and education (e.g., games that promote Braille literacy).
True enough, each line of products confirms Code Factory’s mission to innovate for the benefit, and respond to the needs, of the blind and visually impaired, thus moving accessibility forward.
- Mobile Speak: Accessible communication through exceptional innovation.
- Mobile Magnifier: Improved visibility for increased usability.
- Mobile Tools: Portable utilities for everyday activities.