Dolphin Newsletter - February 2006
- From Steve Palmer and Noel Duffy.
- Latest Product News.
- CSUN 2006.
- What's happening in Development.
- What's happening in Sales.
- Staff News.
It is hard to believe that we will soon be in March already. The year has started extremely well for Dolphin, due in no small part to the excellent work carried out behind the scenes prior to Christmas by our marketing, sales, development and technical support teams. As we write this newsletter, EaseReader has been approved for Curriculum Online and soon all UK schools will be able to use their e-learning credits to procure EaseReader at no cost to themselves. EaseReader will help to create and develop an inclusive classroom environment for all students to enjoy. Over the next few months we shall be looking to extend this approval to all our education and access products; including Dolphin Tutor and Dolphin Producer in the near future.
A number of us travelled to Florida in January, which took a lot of persuading as you can imagine, for the ATIA conference. ATIA has grown significantly over recent years and is now an ideal venue for showcasing our products to a truly international audience. This year we were able to launch Dolphin Producer and PocketHal into America. Both products have been received very favourably. Dolphin Producer has surprised many people by taking away the complexity associated with making DAISY talking books. With PocketHal we have delivered a solution that translates much of the experience of Hal on the desktop to the PDA environment. There has been a lot of comment about PocketHal and we hope people will continue to see the benefits of mobile computing in the years to come. We see PocketHal as one of a new breed of lifestyle products, allowing people to do what they want, when they want.
With CSUN looming fast on the horizon we will be looking to showcase these new products, including our new version of Cicero, which now contains an improved scanning engine to bring you a quality scanning and OCR system to rival the mainstream character recognition software available in the high street. With this new version of Cicero we are seeing it being adopted by many more libraries for access to printed documents. Cicero and our other products have recently been approved and made available on the GSA schedule in the USA, for use within their government departments.
As you can see much has been accomplished in the first few months of this year, a trend we hope to continue as the year progresses. A number of us will be at CSUN and for those who are able to travel to CSUN in March, we very much look forward to meeting you and welcoming you to our booth 317/318 in the Imperial Ballroom, at the Marriott hotel.
Pocket Hal goes from strength to strength. Following the recent successful release of Pocket Hal in the UK and North America, our users are really appreciating the benefits that this technology is bringing them. But don't take our word for it!
What Pocket Hal users say:
"Pocket Hal, combined with my Windows CE based PDA, allows me to access everything I need, on the move. Pocket Hal has given me access to an environment that until now was totally off limits to those of us who are blind or visually impaired", Jim from Indiana, USA.
"Dolphin has created a screen reader that will work on my PDA and allows me to access all my popular PDA applications using the PDA buttons. There is no need to ever touch the screen and I only need to use my Bluetooth keyboard when I am inputting information", Jim from Colorado, USA.
"It is great that we can all now use a PDA, that is so small and does so much", Diane from Brighton, UK.
"I wanted to let you know that I think Pocket Hal is the best thing to come along since the invention of screen readers for the PC. I tried everything to get a portable solution and was very unhappy with everything I tried, then comes Pocket Hal. I can use my iPaq 6515 just like everyone else now. I can keep a real address book and use a portable compiler to work on the road. Thanks a million Dolphin!", Robert from Tennessee, USA.
"I received the Pocket Hal demo, have it installed and it reads all the files I need. Even some that a PacMate or the BrailleNote will not read. I would like to buy the software as soon as possible." Margaret from Rhode Island, USA.
"A fantastic product and definitely allows me to be more effective in my day to day work." Tim from Nottingham, UK.
"Portable computing should not be a choice of one device with one screen reader, but provide the option of using your favourite screen reader on a choice of portable devices. It is the availability and versatility of Pocket Hal which makes this all possible." Rajiv from Washington DC, USA.
Dolphin Producer v1.02 is expected to be released during early March and will be available in English, Dutch and Swedish. Building upon the initial success of Dolphin Producer, version 1.02 will now include automatic page number mark up. Now you can create an instant Digital Talking Book from your text files, which will allow users to navigate through the book page by page or find a page anywhere in the book. A seven day demonstration version will also be available.
EaseReader, Dolphin's DAISY digital talking book software player, has just been Curriculum Online approved, so soon UK schools will be able to use their e-learning credits to buy EaseReader through any approved dealer. To build upon this success a new EaseReader v2.20 will also be released in early March. EaseReader v2.20 will be available to buy in two versions; a single user version and a multi user version, and both will be available with external footpedal support, for those unable to use a keyboard or mouse.
Dolphin will be attending the CSUN conference in Los Angeles, USA next month. The conference runs from March 22-25 and is hosted at the LAX Marriott Hotel. If you plan to attend, we would love to meet you, so please call by the Dolphin booth number 317/318, situated in the Marriott.
CSUN 2006 will see the launch of Dolphin's next generation version 7.0, access software. Supernova v7.0 offers users more features than any other combined screen reader and magnifier, and comes with continued robust support for all Microsoft supported platforms, including support for Citrix networks and Terminal Server sessions, as standard.
Dolphin will also be demonstrating its very latest Mobile Access solutions, including Pocket Hal, screen reader for PDAs and the successful and versatile Dolphin Pen, as well as some new developments for the Smartphone. Now whether you are at school, at work or on the move; Dolphin has a solution for you!
Visit the Dolphin booth to try out our latest Text to Digital Talking Book software. Dolphin Producer is becoming the most talked about solution for creating instant DAISY Digital Talking Books from text documents - the perfect solution for converting Education materials at the push of a button.
Dolphin would also like to invite you to our presentations sessions during your visit to CSUN:
Mobile Access Solutions - Pocket Hal for PDAs
Wednesday 22nd March at 9:20 AM, in the Boston Room - Marriott
DAISY Accessibility for the masses using EaseReader
Wednesday 22nd March at 10:40 AM, in the Denver Room - Marriott
Text to Digital Talking Books in an instant - Dolphin Producer
Wednesday 22nd March at 1:30PM, in the Denver Room - Marriott
Advanced Synthesizer Technology from Dolphin
Saturday 25th March at 10:40 AM, in the Dallas Room - Marriott
If you are unable to make any of the presentation sessions please drop by the Dolphin booth and we will be happy to demonstrate any of the latest range of Access and Education software to you.
Progress continues to be made on the next release of Pocket Hal for PDAs, which offers support for the latest Windows Mobile 5 platforms.
The latest Version 6.53 of Supernova, Hal, Lunar and LunarPlus, now offers support for the Welsh language. Users can quickly and easily switch to a Welsh Control Panel, Welsh prompts and Welsh menus and then back to English should they need to.
Many more new and exciting developments particularly in the area of portable access are underway at Dolphin. Watch this space for more news.
The sales department is very busy as always, and staff reported one of the busiest Januaries ever with a record-breaking start to the year! We're pleased to welcome Rachel Edwards to the team. Rachel will be supporting Raj Taheem in Education sales. In the UK, we are planning a series of special education conferences around the country - more information as it becomes available!
Our latest language release is in Welsh. Although a minority language within the United Kingdom, Welsh is very much a living language and spoken by over 20percent of the population of Wales. Welsh is compulsory in schools and treated equally with English throughout the country, so it's extremely useful for children with a visual impairment to be able to continue their studies thanks to the new Welsh edition of Supernova. We are looking forward to further language releases for Dolphin Producer and Dolphin Tutor next month.
Overseas, our team has been busy; recent visits include map file training with Supernova Professional at the invitation of the Italian Blind Union in Italy together with our partners Voice Systems. We also attended the Ziezo exhibition in the Netherlands and saw the introduction of Pocket Hal with our dealers Optelec and LVBC. RDG Kompagne also launched the Dolphin Pen together with the Dutch Fluency speech synthesiser at this time. Further visits have included Belgium, Austria and Slovakia. Business has also been growing steadily outside of Europe too with recent successes in Hong Kong, Africa and India as Dolphin looks to develop its contacts further afield.
Dolphin welcomes three new members of staff this month. Sarah and Lisa both join the Marketing Department, and Rachel Edwards joins the Sales Office. Sarah is the new Website and eMarketing Coordinator for Dolphin and Lisa joins as the new Marketing Assistant. Rachel Edwards joins the Sales Office as the new Sales Administrator for Education products.