Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Changes in System Access

System Access Browser

  • Re-added the "Copy Shortcut" command to the context menu for links.

Changes in System Access

Starting with this version, the new System Access browser is used by default when you choose to connect from the SA Mobile Network from the System Access menu, or when you launch the SA Mobile Network icon on the Windows desktop. The old, Mozilla-based browser is still available; it's now the second option on the System Access menu. If you previously set the old browser as your default browser, the new browser will become the default when you install this update. You'll want to use the old browser if you want to use our instant messenger; otherwise, you should use the new browser.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Changes in System Access

Accessible Digital Lifestyle

Audio demos of the features described below are available.

  • The new SA Mobile Network browser now supports the Amazon MP3 downloader, which we strongly recommend that you use when buying music from the Amazon MP3 store.

  • You can now transfer described movie audio, other SA Mobile Network audio content such as old-time radio, RSS news articles, podcasts, email, and forum messages to a Victor Reader Stream. Note that you need at least version 1.2 of the Victor Reader Stream firmware, which we expect to be released within a few days of this blog post. You can also transfer music and podcasts to a Creative ZEN Stone MP3 player. Please check the online SA Mobile Network help for more information about these new features.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Are we nuts?

People are asking that question since Serotek elected to make its AFB Access Award winning product, SAToGo, available to all, in conjunction with The AIR Foundation, for no charge.
For the record, the answer is “No. We are not crazy. This makes good sense both from a humanitarian perspective and from a business perspective.”
Stop and think a minute. Does Google charge for using its search engine or for looking up a location on Google Maps? Does Microsoft charge for Internet Explorer? How about Firefox? And wasn’t it Netscape that broke open the Internet with a free browser?
In the long run Netscape lost the battle of the browsers but they completely changed the marketplace.
I think everyone out there understands the humanitarian reasons for making SAToGo available at no charge, but let me talk about the business reasons.
Before we made the free accessibility announcement the entire market for accessibility tools was a few hundred thousand people, worldwide. But there are more than 350 million blind people and a couple hundred million low vision people who would benefit from these tools. So in a very real sense the structure of the adaptive technology marketplace was such that it could never be more than a tiny niche market – a few thousand people fortunate enough to be subsidized by their government or some charity to purchase and be trained in complex accessibility tools.
When you’re a new company like Serotek an artificially restricted market is not only frustrating but debilitating. Even with the best tools available it is not possible to attract the capital to penetrate the market and claim your rightful share. The traditional vendors have a monopolistic stranglehold that virtually protects them from innovation. And who suffers? WE DO! Blind and low vision people suffer because they are left behind.
Our intent in giving away SAToGo is not to compete for the business that traditional screen readers are getting but to blow open the market and invite in millions more blind and low vision people. Our strategy is to say: “Hey this is no longer a private party for a few elite. Accessibility is for everyone, anytime, anywhere.”
So how will we make money? Well clearly we must make money or we will go out of business. We aren’t a charity and we aren’t subsidized by any fund. We survive on the sale of our products and services, pure and simple.
If you look at our Accessible Digital Lifestyle offering you can see that we have a very attractive suite of products for people who want a bit more than screen reader-like access. We anticipate that many SAToGo users will decide they want System Access Mobile and the SAM Net service. We anticipate many public and private institutions, organizations and businesses will want Remote Access Manager and/or Remote Incident Manager. We see schools that perhaps don’t want kids on the Internet, buying site licenses for System Access, confident that the kids have the same software at home that they have at school. Those are just a start.
We anticipate many, many new products that expand the accessible digital lifestyle to every facet of life. The fun of it is we no longer have to think small about a handful of possible users. We can think huge – every blind and low vision person in the world.
To us that makes very good business sense.
What do you think? Are we nuts?