Boston, Massachusetts (January 8, 2013): The National Federation of the Blind of Massachusetts (NFBMA) and its president, Mr. Mika Pyyhkala, worked with Boston-based SCVNGR, Inc. to make SCVNGR’s mobile payment application, LevelUp, fully accessible to smartphone users who are blind or have low vision. LevelUp allows users of iOS and Android devices to make payments and receive special offers and promotions from participating merchants by using their smartphone and a credit or debit card linked to their LevelUp account. As an app that is now fully accessible, LevelUp works with the built-in text-to-speech screen-reading software contained on all Apple and many Android smartphones so that blind people can use the app independently.
Dr. Marc Maurer, President of the National Federation of the Blind, said: “Under this landmark cooperation agreement, the makers of LevelUp ensured that the blind can make use of a truly groundbreaking technology that may revolutionize the way we all conduct everyday transactions. LevelUp now allows blind customers to know what is on their bill, pay it, and even add a tip without assistance from a sighted individual.”
“The NFBMA is an awesome organization, so we were happy to work with them and make sure LevelUp is accessible to the blind,” said Seth Priebatsch, chief ninja of LevelUp. “We want everyone to be able to pay with LevelUp, so making our app fully accessible is a great step toward achieving this goal.”
Mika Pyyhkala, president of the National Federation of the Blind of Massachusetts, said: “We applaud SCVNGR for making LevelUp accessible to all customers, including those who are blind. We encourage all app developers to follow the example of this responsible and forward-thinking company.”
The National Federation of the Blind of Massachusetts and Mika Pyyhkala were represented in this matter by Timothy Elder of the TRE Legal Practice, LLC.