Wamiq Hassan, Pakistan’s first deaf software developer, was motivated by his disability to create an app that would aid deaf and hard-of-hearing Pakistanis, particularly women, in communicating more readily in a country with around 10 million hearing impaired inhabitants.
The DeafTawk mobile phone app, which is available worldwide, attempts to bridge the divide between hearing-impaired individuals and their communities by delivering a “real-time sign-language solution at their fingertips.”
The supportive programme enables deaf people to register, connect with skilled interpreters, and speak with anyone, including physicians, teachers, cab drivers, and family.
The app presently has over 18,000 users and employs over 1,100 professional translators who provide services in six distinct language styles: Pakistani, American, British, Chinese, Singaporean, and Malay.
According to Hassan, the founder, he migrated to the United States approximately 15 years ago since it was impossible for a deaf person in Pakistan to receive decent education programmes. In 2015, he returned to his native country as a trained software programmer, and in 2019, he co-founded DeafTawk with visually impaired friends Ali Shabbar and Abdul Qadeer.
“The primary motivation for developing this software is to elevate the deaf community and to make this world more accessible for everyone through the use of mobile technology,” Hassan explained in an interview.
“From personal experience, I know that deaf people in Pakistan endure severe communication difficulties, and there must be a way around them. As a result, we’re attempting to bridge this divide with this app.”