[Nfbnet-members-list] Info on BuzzClip

David Andrews dandrews at visi.com
Wed Oct 28 01:04:43 UTC 2015

As many of you may know, there was some 
information posted on a large number of 
NFBNET.ORGG lists, in the past couple weeks about 
a mobility aid called the BuzzClip. The piece 
seemed primarily to be a marketing announcement 
and many people had questions about the 
device.  A lively discussion took part on a number of lists.

So that people only receive the information once, 
I have agreed to distribute some information, as 
a convenience.  I, nor the NFB are endorsing this 
device. We are only making you aware of its existance.

David Andrews

>From: Arjun Mali <arjunmali at imerciv.com>
>Subject: Re: Advice on NFB Mailing Lists - iMerciv
>Date: Tue, 27 Oct 2015 20:39:09 -0400
>To: David Andrews <dandrews at visi.com>
>Hi Everyone,
>We are a small start-up company based in Toronto 
>called iMerciv Inc. and we wanted to let people 
>know about the development of our new product 
>that caters to the orientation and mobility 
>needs of those living with vision loss. The 
>device has been street tested and very well 
>received by blind and low vision communities in 
>Canada hence our excitement to let your members 
>know about it. The newly launched BuzzClip is a 
>small wearable device that helps those living 
>with vision loss with day to day traveling by 
>detecting obstacles in one’s immediate 
>environment and then notifying the wearer of 
>these obstacles through intuitive vibrations. It 
>uses ultrasound to detect any obstacle it is 
>pointing at and vibrates faster and stronger as 
>the obstacle/person gets closer.
>The BuzzClip is an electronic device that offers 
>upper body protection that is sometimes missed 
>by a guide dog or cane. It is not meant to be a 
>replacement for the cane or a guide dog rather 
>it is supposed to work in tandem with 
>traditional aids to provide the user more 
>information on their surroundings, particularly 
>at head level. The BuzzClip can be easily 
>attached to many forms of clothing (i.e it can 
>be clipped on a lapel of a winter jacket, on a 
>collar, sleeves (long or short) and the lining 
>of one’s belt) making it a highly versatile 
>and useful device at an affordable price.
>There have indeed been many proximity detectors 
>that came out over the years. And the earlier 
>ones definitely caused a lot of frustration as 
>the functionality and reliability were far from 
>advertised. But we have been working closely and 
>testing our prototypes every step of the way 
>with visually impaired testers in Canada, the 
>U.S and India. Although we do use the same 
>ultrasonic technology, the technology has become 
>much more refined over the years. Also The 
>Buzzclip is not just another ultrasonic 
>proximity detector. The fact that it is wearable 
>and hands free makes it applicable in a lot more 
>use cases. Some of our testers have been using 
>it in line ups at coffee shops to determine when 
>the line is moving forward. Some of them have 
>been using it as a way finder in tight spaces or 
>crowded rooms by walking in the directions where 
>the Buzzclip doesn't detect anything. Some have 
>been using it as security by attaching it behind 
>them, they would know someone is sneaking up on 
>them if the Buzzclip detects something coming 
>towards them and they don't hear anything. Some 
>have found it useful as they would be able to 
>tell if the person they are conversing with got 
>up to get water and when they get back.
>It provides extra information on one's 
>surroundings passively and users are constantly 
>finding new ways to use this extra information.
>The BuzzClip is currently available to pre-order 
>on a crowdfunding platform ‘Indiegogo’ for 
>the next 25 days and is being offered at a discounted price of $129 USD
>After this campaign ends on November 22nd, the 
>final batch of BuzzClips will be manufactured 
>and shipped to our supporters by March of 2016.
>More information/videos on our product can be 
>found here: 
>The link above is our Indiegogo page address and 
>Indiegogo is one of the largest Crowdfunding 
>website in the world that is based in the United States just like Kickstarter.
>A lot of effort was put into optimizing the user 
>experience of the device. Limiting it to 1m and 
>2m modes reduces false positives and only 
>provides vibratory feedback if there are 
>obstacles or people in your path or coming 
>directly at you. The device goes to sleep if you 
>are at a fixed distance for over a few seconds 
>so that it doesn't constantly vibrate if you are 
>talking to someone for example. It reactivates 
>again if the distance changes for more than 10 
>cm. So once it is switched on, the user can 
>simply carry on their usual routine without the 
>need to operate the device constantly. The 
>battery will last for a full days use (10 hours) 
>on a single charge and it is rechargeable 
>through a Micro-USB cable. (just like android phones)
>Aside from the useability, a lot of thought was 
>put into the design and aesthetics as well. The 
>Buzzclip is slightly larger than a lighter. The 
>enclosure is made entirely of aluminum so that 
>it is water resistant and durable and also very 
>aesthetically pleasing. The device consists of 3 
>main sections, a sensor arm that is circular and 
>smaller than the size of an iPod nano in terms 
>of area. It is connected to the battery 
>enclosure by a metallic spring clip that is 
>similar to the ones on pocket knifes and 
>multi-tools. The main body is rectangular with 
>rounded edges and is roughly the size of a 
>lighter. The micro-USB charging port is on the 
>side of the main body. On the back of the main 
>body is the vibration motor arm which is 
>spring-loaded for when one is wearing loose 
>clothing. The entire unit has a finish that is 
>similar to the look and feel of the Apple TV 
>remote. When it is worn, the only part that will 
>be exposed is the circular sensor arm.
>For reference, our press release is on yahoo 
>finance if you search "the buzzclip" on yahoo 
>finance and we have been featured on Eyes on 
>Mobility, blind.tech, cool wearable, tech vibes, 
>Cool Blind Tech and CNET. I won't attach links 
>here, but you can find us on those websites if 
>you need reassurance. The Founders names are Bin 
>Liu and Arjun Mali and you can reach them +1 
>(647) 919 6565 for Bin and +1 (647) 919 9269 for Arjun.
>Hope this information helps and is useful to 
>some of you. If you have any questions for us, 
>we would be happy to answer them.
>You can contact us at 
><mailto:info at imerciv.com>info at imerciv.com or 
>give us a call at one of the numbers provided above.
>Thank You & Best Regards,
>Arjun Mali
>Co-Founder & Chief Financial Officer
>iMerciv Inc.
><mailto:arjunmali at imerciv.com>arjunmali at imerciv.com 
>.    Phone: (647)-919-9269    .    <http://www.imerciv.com>www.imerciv.com
>>On Oct 27, 2015, at 7:38 PM, David Andrews 
>><<mailto:dandrews at visi.com>dandrews at visi.com> wrote:
>>Send it to me and I will put it on the appropriate lists.
>>At 06:28 PM 10/27/2015, you wrote:
>>>Hi David,
>>>I wanted to apologize for the manner in which 
>>>our information was presented to the NFB mailing lists.
>>>Honestly we were not trying to spam anyone and 
>>>I realize that it must have been annoying to 
>>>receive an bombardment of emails from our team.
>>>I have spoken to all members of our team and I 
>>>ensure you that it will not happen again.
>>>We wanted to spread the news about our new 
>>>product and get some feedback from the 
>>>audience we cater to and thought that NFB 
>>>members would be the best people to engage.
>>>Some NFB lists engaged in discussions with us 
>>>and found the info very useful once we were 
>>>able to answer their questions, hence we have 
>>>since re-written our message to provide 
>>>informative details about our company, our new product and our overall mission.
>>>Which lists would you recommend sharing our information with?
>>>Please advise us on the appropriate methods of 
>>>communicating with NFB member lists so that we 
>>>do not violate any mailing list rules.
>>>Once again we apologize for any inconvenience 
>>>this may have caused you and we look forward 
>>>to engaging in meaningful discussions with members of the NFB.
>>>Thank You & Best Regards,
>>>Arjun Mali
>>>Co-Founder & Chief Financial Officer
>>>iMerciv Inc.
>>><mailto:arjunmali at imerciv.com>arjunmali at imerciv.com 
>>>.    Phone: (647)-919-9269    .    <http://www.imerciv.com/>www.imerciv.com
>>         David Andrews and long white cane Harry.
>><mailto:dandrews at visi.com>dandrews at visi.com or 
>><mailto:david.andrews at nfbnet.org>david.andrews at nfbnet.org

         David Andrews and long white cane Harry.
E-Mail:  dandrews at visi.com or david.andrews at nfbnet.org
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