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New app will help make sign language communication more accessible

Press release issued: 5 September 2012

An innovative new app that can help people to communicate in sign language through a searchable database of over 4,000 signs has been launched by the University of Bristol.

An innovative new app that can help people to communicate in sign language through a searchable database of over 4,000 signs has been launched by the University of Bristol.

MobileSign is a free British Sign Language (BSL) lexicon app, designed by experts from the University’s Centre for Deaf Studies, the tool includes the largest free sign language lexicon on the major app stores, designed to help hearing and Deaf sign language users to communicate more effectively.

Accessed using a predictive ‘word search’, the app automatically shows lists of possible words for the user to choose from, once selected a video of a person signing the selected word is shown on screen. The app, which is available to view online or store on your mobile device, will also allow the user to keep a list of their recently viewed signs for repeat access later.

Christopher John, Digital Developer at the University’s Centre for Deaf Studies said: “MobileSign was developed to make sign language learning more accessible by means of the distribution methods of the major app stores, and by making the app and content free for people to use.  We believe that just because you can charge for content does not mean that you automatically should, it is our wish to see British Sign Language use grow through free sign language learning resources such as MobileSign.

The MobileSign app can be used on iPhone, iPad and Android devices and is downloadable from App Store (Apple) or Google Play (Android).