Reading Device for the Blind

Bild: VideoTIM3 mit Handkamera auf einem Textdokument

Welcome to ABTIM.COM

For more than fifteen years, the VideoTIM device has been used in various workplaces for the blind in Germany and abroad. VideoTIM devices offer new career opportunities for the blind. The VideoTIM has also been used successfully for years in the private sector, helping the completely blind to achieve extensive autonomy in many areas of life.

The latest generation of this device has completely new electronics, software and significantly improved ergonomics.

The VideoTIM technology consists of two main components: A handheld video camera and the main device with a tactile perceptible display. The VideoTIM device works like this: The image detected by the handheld video camera is transferred to the touch display and shown there with tactile dots. This process was developed by us and is called the Tactile Projection System, TPS.

The VideoTIM device cannot be compared with the automatic reading devices (scanners with OCR and voice output). The user of the VideoTIM has the opportunity to independently look at text and simple graphics - it gives the user the possibility of “tactile vision”

The VideoTIM reader for the blind makes documents readable with the fingers. After a day of training, most users can read entire sentences autonomously. On the second day of training, this reading will be much faster. After several days, reading becomes routine with the TPS technique we developed. The reading hand lies still on the touch display and recognizes all information by the touch pixels moving beneath it.

Numerous VideoTIM users were previously OPTACON users. Compared to the functionally similar OPTACON, the VideoTIM device runs much smoother and offers a comfortable tactile image without the symptoms of fatigue that often occur with the OPTACON. To the best of our knowledge, the OPTACON has not been manufactured for about 20 years.

For questions about VideoTIM or the associated training, please write to:


VideoTIM4 is our latest generation of reading devices for the blind. It is now available in Europe. Please ask for the detailed product description at:

At this point, a big thank you to all supporters of the VideoTIM project. Over a period of time, this was an R&D project with federal funds and private funds. We would like to thank the UNI Wuppertal (BUW), especially Prof. Schlingensiepen and his employees and students, for supporting the project over several years in the field of production technology and application development. Thanks to the ERTOMIS Foundation, which supported the work of the UNI Wuppertal with foundation funds. Special thanks go to Prof. Ulrich Reif, who accompanied the industrial design of this new product over a long period of time. Thanks also to all supporting persons and institutions not listed here individually.