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Published: July 7, 2020
Comcast: Eye on Technology

Photo of The IC's CEO Patricia Yeager speaking

Most of us don’t think twice about grabbing the remote to change channels. But for people with mobility disabilities – like thosePhoto of The IC's CEO Patricia Yeager speaking with quadriplegia or ALS – it can be almost impossible. And without access to television programming, individuals can become isolated or find themselves without critical information during emergencies like COVID-19.

Now, a new eye-control technology from the cable company, Comcast, promises to change that. A few months ago, Alison Busse of Comcast invited The Independence Center to partner with the company to demonstrate the Xfinity X1 system. Paul Spotts, The IC’s IL Specialist for Assistive Technology, took it for a spin as Nick Jimenez, Comcast’s director of government and regulatory affairs in Denver, explained how it works.

The system connects through a tablet or mobile phone to a Tobii Eye Tracker. Then, after the individual calibrates it with their eyes, they can change channels, search for programming, and do other tasks just by looking at the tablet.

“It’s really simple,” Paul told KOAA News at the event. “It takes 10 minutes to basically get used to it with your eyes and then you don’t have to rely on anybody else to…change the channel or holler for someone to come in and change the channel. It’s all in your lap.”

There’s no monthly service fee for this technology, but there is an upfront cost to purchase the equipment. To learn more, visit If you’d like to find out about other assistive technologies that can help you or a loved one live more independently, call The IC at 719-471-8181.

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