After working tirelessly for three years at Blind People Association, Ahmedabad Krishna Sai Inkoolu invented Taparch; smart-assistive footwear to help the visually impaired to walk confidently and independently.
Intent: Taparch aims to use technology to improve the safety, comfort and independence of the visually impaired. Economically priced, Taparch aims to help disadvantaged groups increase their social agency and independence.
Idea: Taparch footwear contains a sensor that detects obstacles within a range of 400m, catering for individuals with less than 15 degrees of visual field. When the sensor detects an obstacle, it vibrates and alerts the user.
Impact: The WHO (2014) estimates that there are 285 million visually impaired people worldwide with 21% living in India. Furthermore, 80% of all visual impairment is considered avoidable and therefore systematically affects those from lower socio-economic groups. Such marginalised groups do not have access to expensive assisted technologies making them dependant on others and pushes them further into poverty. Taparch estimates to reach 35,347 visually impaired people in the next three years assisting them to lead confident, independent lives.
BVIC Intervention: Taparch became part of SOCENT when the founder was working on the testing and pilot of the product. BVIC supported the start-up in understanding how to commercialize the product, customer segment, operational strategies, and business model. BVIC also provided Taparch with the strategies of joint branding with the leading brand and forge collaborations with major eye institutes.