It’s been 6 years since Humanware has updated the BrailleNote, and today marks the end of that wait. Today at CSUN, Humanware unveiled the BrailleNote Touch, a device which is based on Android 4.4, but runs the Keysoft suite of products. Think modern support for mail and other applications, but with the familiarity of Keysoft. The best way to picture the device is that it has an iPad mini sized screen which a user can perform standard Android gestures on, or a new braille input method described below. There is a Perkins-style braille keyboard which comes down over the screen if the user desires to use that instead. The keyboard overlay attaches to the device and can be removed if the user prefers to use the touch screen and braille display exclusively. The unit also features support for SDHC cards, 16GB of built-in memory, a HDMI port for connectivity with external monitors or TV’s, an 8 megapixel camera with LED lighting, a USB 3.0 host port, and Micro USB charging .

There are 3 buttons on the front of the unit which correspond to Back, Home, and Menu, which doubles as a context-sensitive help key for KeySoft apps. Menu can be held down for Android’s Recent Apps screen.

Screen input is done through a process Humanware is calling Touch Braille mode, but there is also a mode that is very similar to what one would find with braille screen input on iOS, or with one of the supported braille keyboards…

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