Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Reviewing the Tecla Shield UNO with iPhone 4S

Tecla Shield UNO with iPhone 4S

The Tecla Shield by Komodo OpenLab is a wireless device that lets you control smartphones and tablets using  external switches or the driving controls of your powered wheelchair.

I began using the Tecla Shield in January of 2013 after a long search for a device to operate
an iPhone with my limited dexterity.  First off I was impressed with it's relatively low cost ($249 with a newer version being released in August 2013 for $349) compact size (fits in pocket on my ventilator) and ease of use.

Set Up

Set up was pretty simple, just power up, pair with the bluetooth, turn on voiceover and connect a adaptive switch. I found these inexpensive Ultra Light HD Switches for $26 a third of the cost of mini cup switches... I will say it did take some time to fine tune the scanning rate. (I would suggest turning down the volume while adjustmenting as having voiceover reading off options at a fast 
pace is very annoying).


Komodo offers a mount for the iphone at $99 however I opted for a Lifeproof bike mount and case for iPhone 4S, I got both on ebay for $70. Mounting was easy as the bike mount includes a few rubber spacers to fit small bars, pipes, etc. My mid line mounted joystick made for a perfect spot to attach the bike mount right beside the controller (1) while still being protected by the supporting bar (2). 

(1) Top view

(2) Side view

Full set up w/ switch
Overall I would say I'm satisfied with the Tecla shield, it has given me more independence in being able to send texts, make calls, get directions, etc. there are a few drawbacks in that it takes time to enter text, because you have to scan back and forth over the keyboard instead of selecting the the key you want and you can't adjust the volume slider in iTunes. I have funding in place to upgrade to the ECU option that will allow me to control the TS with my joystick, alleviating the issues mentioned.
Stay tuned i'll keep you updated...

Neil Mercer

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