A new mobile application called WatcHelp has been designed to help people with cognitive disabilities, including autism, to complete daily tasks and handle stressful situations. The app sends instructions, reminders and advice to a connected watch worn by the user. It can be adapted to any situation and keeps families and carers informed of the person’s progress.
The WatcHelp app works by providing a series of step by step instructions to users in the form of text, pictures or pictograms. The messages appear on a connected watch that vibrates to alert the users. They will respond in one click to instantly inform parents or professionals that they have received and followed the instructions. Alerts will be raised on the parent or professional’s Smartphone if the user does not answer or answers “no” twice consecutively.
A number of different uses have been foreseen for the app, including providing sequential instructions for the organisation of daily tasks, and scheduling to give an overall view of the planning of daily activities. Memos are also given to help users manage destabalising situations, such as missing a bus or losing one’s keys. Step by step solutions to overcome unplanned situations are provided, reassuring and guiding the user to help them overcome stress and panic. Parents or professionals can also build their own image bank in the memo function to suit the particular situation of any user.
The app is compatible with a number of digital connected watches, which are listed on the WatcHelp website. It is currently available in English, French and Spanish.