Apps, museums and accessibility: these three concepts will soon be brought together in Spain thanks to the Áppside project. In GVAM we joined forces with the Orange Foundation in order to promote equal access to Spanish cultural heritage. Áppside will develop and offer free apps for all types of public, tailored to the needs of people with sensory disabilities, both for iOS and Android devices.
The project incorporates the concepts of accessibility and universal design, using technology which was originally designed for all kinds of public: GVAM’s Ventour. With it, anyone can enjoy a cultural experience tailored to his needs and completely autonomously. These apps will incorporate different languages, phrases, images, computer graphics, subtitling, sign language videos, audio descriptions, specific itineraries for different groups or types of pubic, etc. The user can pre-select the resources that he considers necessary and change his selection at any time.
According to the “Apps in museums and cultural centers in Latin America” survey, interest in supporting accessibility is almost unanimous among museums. Indeed, 92% would not hesitate to adapt their application to people with disabilities if they received funding for it. Meanwhile, 5% of them already have an accessible app. The main obstacle to this type of technology project is, for 60% of the Spanish participants, a lack of economic resources.
In parallel to these issues, cultural institutions face the challenge of meeting the new digital consumer habits, while meeting the accessibility needs of persons with disabilities, which are enshrined in the law itself. The project will help Áppside meet this dual challenge in an innovative and inclusive manner. The Lázaro Galdiano Museum, the Sorolla Museum and the Alcazar de los Reyes Cristianos in Cordoba are the first institutions to join this project. Very soon we will be able to download their apps for free on Google Play and App Store.