The design of the Mada Innovation Program is to encourage innovators to create Arabic solutions for Persons with Disability and Elderly, thus increasing its availability within the region through a combination of grant programs. Under this program, Mada had collaborated with Korean Technology Firm ‘DOT Incorporation’ by funding the localization of an accessible and well-designed kiosk that can offer a well-organized and free experience for all users. DOT Incorporation had developed such a kiosk which can work multifunctional and localize for Qatar. From metro stations to government offices, the use of kiosk machines is famous as a convenience for users and an alternative to human service. As the use of kiosks grows, so does the need to ensure they are accessible and usable for all people, including those with disabilities.
In February 2020, Mada received the first accessible kiosk supporting Arabic and English Language and setup at MadaLab located on the 7th floor of Al Nasr Tower B, West Bay (https://mip.qa/). The demo feature of the kiosk is to print the Mada Endorsement Certificates which will get granted to innovators who want to endorse their solution by Mada.
DOT incorporation carefully studied the two main streams of accessible kiosk while developing and has provided the first fusion of solutions for people with various types of functional limitations. In general, the accessibility concerns relating to public kiosks fall into two broad streams:
– Kiosk environment and structure: This includes the location of the kiosk and providing ease of access for all people, including wheels chair users, the elderly and people with impaired vision. It also covers the physical assembly of the kiosk, such as the height, angle of the screen and keyboard, provision of headphone outputs and in some cases assistive keyboards.
– Screen interface: The size and color of the text and buttons on the screen, clear ID of form inputs, the usage of language that is easy to recognize, and providing audio alternatives for all information or functionality conveyed by images or text.
The physical structure of this kiosk and the environment in which it can be used are covered by government regulations regarding disability access to services in the built environment. The accessibility of the kiosk interface, the manufacturer has stuck to the regulations that are available such as WCAG which appears to be a good starting point, mainly if the kiosk is providing access to online content such as government information, government services and paid printing systems.
Mada provided the QITCOM 2019 podium for the DOT incorporation in showcasing the first fully accessible eGovernment kiosk which added fruitfulness to the MADA – KOTRA partnership. The four days long conference attracted many decision-makers, disabled users and stakeholders to explore the vast options and features of the eGovernment kiosk. Until recent times, the accessible kiosk can refer to adding a keypad to make a kiosk accessible or wheelchair accessible height for the kiosk. During QITCOM 2019, DOT Incorp presented a comprehensive set of cross-disability interface techniques or strategies kiosk that extend a touchscreen interface, braille input, audio output, wheelchair accessible and making it accessible to people with multiple disabilities. The Mada Innovation Program is well equipped to encourage innovators to create Arabic such solutions for Persons with Disability. All in One Kiosk provides government services like issuing a license or certifications without the need to going to any administrative offices. It is an electronic device for implementing an advanced administrative system suitable for the digital information age, which can be installed in a governmental institution or a public place to allow users to have e-Government services directly. As a next phase to the support provided by Mada Innovation program, we intend to provide a launchpad for the product to reach the targeted stakeholders and decision-makers.
For more information, please read a related article on Nafath Issue 12 (https://mip.qa/nafath-article/accessible-kiosk-as-an-e-government-service-feedback-from-persons-with-physical-disabilities-and-visual-impairments/)