Sony has unveiled its latest release, the DSC-HX99RNV camera kit, designed for individuals with visual impairments. The kit includes a Sony point and shoot camera and a viewfinder equipped with a retinal laser projection system to make photography accessible to those who previously could not enjoy the hobby.
The HX99RNV kit comprises the Cybershot DSC-HX99 camera, which features an 18-megapixel backside illuminated sensor with built-in image stabilization and a 24mm to 720mm zoom lens. The viewfinder, a Retissa Neoviewer developed by Japan’s QD Laser, projects a digital image from the camera directly to the retina of the user. While the technology may not work for everyone, the viewfinder will allow those who it does to see faces, read signs, and capture photos and videos.
Sony plans to sell the HX99RNV kit for $600 this summer, the same cost as the DSC-HX99 on its own. In a show of support for the low-vision community, Sony will bear the majority of the cost to produce the device. However, the kit will only be available directly through Sony, and the company will limit purchases to one per person. Sony also intends to collaborate with American and Japanese schools to provide the device to low-vision individuals.
Dr. Mitsuru Sugawara, the president and CEO of QD Laser, stated that the Retissa Neoviewer’s laser retinal projection technology is a completely new technology that has been put into practical use for the first time in the world. Sony’s new release signals the company’s commitment to inclusivity and accessibility, demonstrating how technology can make a difference in the lives of individuals with disabilities.