umeå university​

master thesis

21 weeks​




spring 2019

This thesis project set out to empower people born deaf or hearing impaired in their everyday lives. An important aspect was to avoid a common fallacy - a solution designed from an audist’s perspective. Thus, the whole process was continually inspired by and validated with the target group: three people representing the spectrum of hearing impairment, a tinnitus group, and the youth center DUKiS for the hearing impaired in Stockholm. This resulted in a wearable that enables users to seamlessly get eachother’s attention through haptics - and if desired - take part in the everyday soundscape.

introduction  |  hearing through haptics

A short animation showing the two main aspects of the Waveband, and how they fit into the world of hearing impairment.

background  |  framing the issue

hearing impairment since birth

Cochlear implants can help people with severe hearing loss understand up to 85% of conversations.

first interviews  |  building a relation

sensory substitution

Input from touch
Brain's processing capacity
Input from eyes
Input from ears

workshop  |  insights and opportunities

ideation  |  getting someone's attention

validation  |  scenarios


waveband  |  result

uid talks 2019  |  exhibition