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Talking Thermometers

Talking Thermometers

Collected opinions from TAVIP Discussion List

December 2020

Introduction

 

The information in this article is harvested from postings to the TAVIP discussion list, and represents the views of individual contributors, and doesn’t necessarily reflect the view of the association.

 

Talking Ear and Forehead Thermometer from RNIB

 

Initial Findings (Tim Pennick)

 

I ordered one of these devices having come across it in the recent RNIB New Product Guide.  I figured that everyone really needs an accurate accessible thermometer at the moment.

 

I was expecting a device with maybe one or two buttons and very limited functionality.  A thermometer is the kind of thing that most people don’t use for years, and then need in a hurry.  It just needs to work.

 

Instructions are available from RNIB in the necessary formats, and I ordered the hard-copy braille version, expecting a couple of lines saying something like ‘Insert Thermometer as appropriate, and press button.”  I was very disappointed by the complexity of the device which needs sighted assistance if it is to be set up as per the instructions.  This includes setting up date and time which are required for tracking progress of temperature over 30 uses of the device.

 

Feedback from the TAVIP discussion list indicates that it is possible for a totally blind person to use the device without setting up the date and time, but I didn’t find any reference to this option in the instructions.

 

Another issue with the design of the device is the requirement to remove the batteries if the thermometer is not to be used over an extended period.  This presumably means that another period of setting up the date and time is required when the batteries are re-inserted.

 

Once set up, the thermometer is indeed easy to use.  I have only used the forehead option, which allows you to measure temperature in a couple of seconds by simply touching the forehead with the probe, and pressing a single button.

 

Conclusion

 

I have used this a couple of times, and against the background of the reservations raised above, it appears to be a useful device which can be used by a totally blind person.

 

Source and pricing

The current price in the RNIB online shop as of December 7th 2020 is £24.99, and the details can be found at

https://shop.rnib.org.uk/talking-ear-and-forehead-thermometer-89893

Useful Additional Feedback

 

From the TAVIP Discussion list a message from “Barry”, relating to the thermometer reviewed above.

 

I got one of these last week.  You can use it as a basic ear and forehead thermometer without sighted help, but you wouldn’t be able to keep an accurate record of the tests on the device.  Not an issue as you won’t be able to read them anyway – It doesn’t speak them out loud.  So, if you just want to know your temperature, just press the button to wake it, then press it again to test the temperature and it speaks it.  The default shut down seems to be about a minute.  One thing though.  There are three buttons.  I naturally gravitated to the one at the top on the opposite side to the nozzle.  This is the forehead button.  The side button is the one to use for the ear.  Oh, and I didn’t know that I had to take the protective cap off the nozzle to do the ear.  One more issue.  It defaults to centigrade, which I’m fine with, but if I wanted Fahrenheit, I have to take the battery out and find one of the two buttons in there.  The other is to reset the thermometer.  All things considered, it’s not a good design for blind people, but it is workable.

 

Silvercloud UFV41 Infrared Thermometer

 

These comments on the Silvercloud UFV41 from Adrian Tamasan in a mail message dated November 23rd 2020.  The device he refers to doesn’t appear to be widely available.

 

Hi,

I have bought recently a talking thermometer with infrared called Silvercloud UF41 which looks more like tiny hair dryer or a pistol.

I have to keep it few centimetres away from my wrist or forehead.

Simply press the trigger and after 3 short beeps the measured temperature is spoken.

It is able to measure body temperature and ambient as well. Have a little screen and 4 buttons which I don’t know too much what they do. I know one is switching from body to ambient, one is menu and no idea for the other. The manual instruction is like a Sunday magazine. Probably have two pages of instructions in every language under sun.

The device operates with 2 double A batteries.

They recommend to keep a half of minute pause between measurements in order to be more accurate. Probably the juice in batteries e matter after a while.

At the moment I am pleased with it and meets my requirements.

Further Alternatives

 

We do not have current TAVIP reviews for the following: