All Tecla users are unique. This is why they built a device that can be used in countless different ways to encourage people with disabilities to use technology to increase their independence at work or at play. tecla-e is a device that benefits young students as much as it benefits teens, adults, and their “older” friends.
Todd uses tecla-e to control his smart home appliances by turning on the lights, opening doors, and controlling the temperature from his smartphone. Gaining access to mainstream technology allowed Todd to charm his future wife with adorable text messages.
Carolyn works in magazine publishing and editing and uses her tecla-e and smartphone to stay productive with access to writing emails and making appointments. Gaining access to mainstream technology allowed Carolyn to ditch her basic flip phone and expensive dedicated assistive devices.
Maggie uses her smartphone to stay connected to her “lover boy” of 50 years when they are apart. Gaining access to mainstream technology means Maggie knows that she can monitor her husband’s health and be able to call for assistance, hands-free.
Communicate, control, and connect with the world hands-free with tecla-e.
tecla-e is the newest version of Tecla. The cloud-connected assistive device provides users with control of their smart devices and environment through wheelchair driving controls and ability switches from manufacturers like AbleNet.
tecla-e empowers individuals with physical disabilities who cannot independently use smartphones, tablets, computers or smart home technology with touchscreens and keyboards. This includes those with limited upper-body mobility resulting from spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis, ALS, muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, brain injuries, or stroke.
Recommended by Assistive Technology Practitioners, Speech-Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, Rehabilitation Specialists, and Special Education Teachers.
Multiple Device Control
tecla-e can pair with up to eight (8) Bluetooth* devices and the user can switch between them by pressing and holding one of their switches. Compatible devices include:
iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch (iOS devices with Switch Control)
Mac Computers (macOS with Switch Control)
Apple TV (tvOS with Switch Control)
Android devices (with Switch Access, we recommend Pixel devices)
Samsung devices (with Universal Switch)
Windows computers (compatible scanning software required)
Control Smart Home Technology
tecla-e can control Internet-enabled appliances via its WiFi connection through smart home platforms and services. tecla-e currently supports devices through IFTTT, devices controlled by Logitech’s Harmony Hub, and integrates with Amazon Alexa’svoice assistant service. Quadriplegic users can have full control of their lighting and thermostats with access to the best mainstream devices like Philips Hue and Nest.
tecla-e itself is a light-touch button switch that requires about 200 grams of force to activate. This feature is ideal for users who aren’t familiar with switch access. Due to the device’s built-in radios, tecla-e should not be positioned near a user’s head. We recommend the Buddy Button or Wireless Head Array for head control.
*Coming soon as a subscription-based service*
tecla-e contains location, temperature, motion, and ambient light sensors. The information gathered by these sensors can be uploaded to the cloud and accessed through the Tecla apps for iOS and Android. The user can make this information available to family and caregiver who have also downloaded the app for extra peace of mind. This feature is currently only available in North America.
Configure your device from the Tecla app for iOS and Android, use the app as a remote control and remotely monitor a tecla-e device. The new Tecla app for iOS and Android has three functions:
- Hardware Set-Up: You can use the app to customize how your tecla-e works and upgrade the firmware as new features and bug fixes roll in.
- Soft Remote: The app has a fully customizable remote, where you can create buttons for phone functions (direct dials, text messages, etc) or to control your Internet-enabled appliances with IFTTT, Harmony, and Alexa commands. Users with speech impairments can even create an Alexa text query button to access all of Alexa’s skills without using their voice.
- Remote Monitoring: Sensor information from the tecla-e hardware (GPS, motion, surrounding temperature and light conditions) can be accessed through the app. This information can be shared with family and caregivers that have downloaded the app and created an account.
The rechargeable, long-lasting battery has up to 48 hours of continued use. tecla-e can be charged with any standard USB-C.
Compatible Ability Switches and Devices
Switches: You can connect two single or dual ability switches with a ⅛” or 3.5mm connector. These include jelly bean switches, buddy buttons, sip and puff switches, etc. tecla-e can connect with up to 9 switches (including the built-in button) with the Multiple Switch Adaptor.
Wheelchair Driving Control: You can use the driving control of your wheelchair with tecla-e if your wheelchair is equipped with an Environmental Control Unit (ECU) or Input/Output Module (IOM). This is an add-on for wheelchairs that allows them to control external devices.
Wireless Wheelchair Control: New wheelchair driving controls from Adaptive Switches Laboratories (ASL) wirelessly connect to tecla-e so there is no need to connect tecla-e to the wheelchair electronics. Learn more about the ATOM Electronic Head Array.
Reducing the Cost of Inclusion Independence
Purchasing a tecla-e to use with a smartphone, tablet, computer, or any IFTTT-compatible smart home device can eliminate dozens of single-purpose assistive devices like page turners and adaptive remote controls.
At $499, replacing 5 single-purpose devices alone will put an extra $1512 in your pocket per user. The price of inclusion that tecla-e brings? Priceless.
Tecla is an assistive device that gives people with upper-body mobility impairments the ability to fully access smart devices and technology –– at a fraction of the cost of traditional assistive devices. They operate within the Biomedical Zone, hospital-based health technology incubator located in one of Canada’s leading medical centres: St. Michael’s Hospital. Tecla is designed and assembled in Toronto, Canada by Komodo OpenLab Inc.
Komodo OpenLab is a certified B Corporation. This means that we use the power of business to solve a social problem. Certified B Corporations meet higher standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability. B Corporations are important because they inspire all businesses to not only be the best in the world but to be the best for the world.
Meet the Founders
Komodo OpenLab founders, Mauricio Meza and Jorge Silva, have over 20 years of combined experience in the assistive technology field.
Mauricio Meza, CEO, runs the day-to-day business operations of Tecla. Before Tecla, he worked for over ten years as an assistive tech leader and consultant at Canada’s largest rehabilitation hospital, the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute. In 2010, he completed his MBA at Ryerson University before working with Jorge to build the first Tecla product. Read more about Mauricio’s story.
Jorge Silva, CTO, is known as the resident “hacker in chief.” He’s responsible for the product’s development – both hardware and software. Jorge has been an inclusive technology researcher for over 12 years at the University of Toronto, Holland Bloorview Kids Rehab Hospital and OCAD University.
Meet the Team
Megan Stangl, Marketing and Communications Officer
Megan manages communications and outreach, strategizes marketing, and assists Mauricio with business development. Megan is also the voice behind our blog, so make sure to catch up on the latest and greatest in assistive tech and accessibility!
Mhairi Robertson, Graphic Designer
Mhairi is a freelance graphic designer working in Toronto. She loves helping small companies and charities find their identity. When she’s not designing, you can probably find her rock climbing or eating pizza while binge-watching Netflix.