One of the problems illiterate people have with phones is their inability to read text messages. All they can do with their phones is pretty much just make and receive calls. Well, thanks to the mobile interaction design students at Lausanne Switzerland’s EPFL, all that may be a problem of the past. The students have come up with a project called EasySMS that allows illiterate people to read, compose and send text messages.

Using text-to-speech technology, and a lot of visual indicators i.e. pictograms and searchable avatars, illiterate people will be able to use their phones to do more than just make calls to their friends and family. Text messages received can also be dictated, word by word or as a whole message. While text-to-speech isn’t exactly a new idea, the concept of being able to compose messages using icons and having a visually-searchable contact list is pretty innovative. Find out more at the EasySMS blog or watch the video after the break:

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