Devices Offering Great Solutions (DOGS)

Electronic Braille Display


Devices to read or write braille through the computer.


About Electronic Braille Display 


Refreshable Braille Displays and Braille Notetakers are portable devices for reading and writing in braille.

Braille is a reading method for persons who are blind. Braille consists of a combination of raised dots that represent a single letter or a shorthand of common letter combinations. Electronic Braille is read through a refreshable Braille display using raised rounded pins.

Portable Braille devices can create and read notes, email, and browse the Internet among other useful tasks. Some prefer to use their Braille display alongside other technology such as a computer or mobile device. Many refreshable Braille displays and note takers can be connected to these devices either wirelessly or through a USB.

What kinds of electronic braille displays are there?

Perkins Keyboards

Typical Braille displays are a single line of Braille cells, and a person reading can move the line of Braille displayed by use of cursor keys. Braille entries are made with a keyboard that consists of six keys representing a position in the Braille cell and a space bar to separate letters/combination of letters.

These devices are made by companies like Freedom ScientificHIMS, and Humanware.

QWERTY Keyboards

Some braille displays and notetakers offer traditional typing keyboards for inputting text. Examples include the Mantis from Humanware or the BrailleSense from HIMS.


How can I find out what’s new?

Technology changes all the time. To find out about the latest options for these, you can type keywords into a search engine such as Google, Safari, Firefox, or Bing on a computer or tablet. These are the keywords for this type of item:


refreshable braille display, electronic braille, braille notetaker


How do I find out more?

If you live in the US outside of Pennsylvania, you can find your state’s AT program.

If you live in Pennsylvania:

  • you could contact TechOWL to work with a specialist. We can meet with you and sometimes demonstrate this equipment. We can also help with different ways to get one for your own.
  • you might borrow this equipment to try out.

Are these in Pennsylvania’s AT Lending Library?