The app developed by Samsung Italia and Leo Burnett Italia can now be used by virtually the whole world
Samsung Electronics Italia and Leo Burnett Italia have announced that Samsung Wemogee, the first free instant messaging app designed to allow patients affected by aphasia and oral communication disorders in general, is now available in 11 new languages (Spanish, French, Chinese, Hindi, Arabic, Turkish, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese, German and Korean, in addition to Italian and English), which means it can be used virtually by the whole of the world population.
This new goal, attained just a few days before the Italian national day of Aphasia (21 October 2017), has also been possible thanks to more than 14,500 enthusiast users who downloaded the app for iOS and Android and sent positive and constructive feedback to the development team. For Spanish, German and Korean, the translation was done with the direct contribution of some volunteers who localized the app free of charge into their own languages, so to use it in speech centres or just to be able to communicate with their families once again.
Developed in Italy by Samsung Electronics Italia and Leo Burnett Italia with the collaboration of Elio Clemente Agostoni, Director of the Department of Neuroscience at the Niguarda Hospital of Milan, Samsung Wemogee fills a gap of expression which affects over 3 million people worldwide (200,000 in Italy alone) who suffer from aphasia, a very complex pathology which entails the loss of the ability to produce or understand language. It is an acquired disorder, due to lesions in Broca’s area and in Wernicke’s area, the regions of the brain responsible for planning, conception and linguistic expression. The most frequent causes are traumatic, hemorrhagic or ischemic in kind (no less than 30% of the people who have strokes develop a form of aphasia). This disorder has serious consequences on the life of both patients and people close to them. As language is the most important tool for communicating, aphasia can entail the loss of the social network and great frustration from an emotional point of view.
With a simple and user-friendly interface, Samsung Wemogee works as a sort of text-emoji translator and vice versa. Developed in collaboration with Francesca Polini, a speech therapist and lecturer at the Università degli Studi of Milan, the dictionary of the app includes a library of more than 140 sentences covering both the basic needs and the affective sphere, with the most useful sentences for the communications of aphasic patients. These sentences have been translated into logical sequences of emojis and divided into 6 macro categories (everyday life; eating and drinking; feelings; help; play and recreational activities; special occasions and celebrations). The aphasic people can choose from a panel of visual options what they want to communicate, and send the selected sequence of emojis to their non-aphasic recipient. The non-aphasic person receives the message in text format and can answer by writing. In the same way, the aphasic patient will receive the message displayed through emojis.
Samsung Wemogee is not only a remote messaging chat: this app can also be a training tool in scenarios of joint presence, supporting the traditional rehabilitation methodologies, thanks to the display feature which allows showing the selected sentence both in emoji form and as text on a single device.
Further information on the Samsung Wemogee project is available on their website