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Accessible Personalised Services in Public Digital Terminals for all

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APSIS4all is a project aimed at personalising Public Digital Teminals (PDTs) for all. It also overcomes the existing accessibility barriers faced by people unfamiliar with ICT, people with disabilities and older people when interacting with Public Digital Terminals, such as ATMs and Ticket Vending Machines. APSIS4all not only focuses on overcoming such barriers, but also on improving the experience for all users, by enabling PDTs to adapt their interfaces automatically according to their needs and preferences, and by opening up a new variety of interaction modes through the use of the users' own mobile devices, such as smartphones, as a means of interaction.

Policy context

APSIS4all is partially funded by the EU's ICT Policy Support Programme - Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme.

Description of target users and groups

APSIS4all aims at personalisation, so that any citizen can benefit from this project. Nonetheless, the current accessibility barriers mean that disabled people, older people and people who are not familiar with ICT are commonly excluded from accessing the services provided by Public Digital Terminals.

APSIS4all not only focuses on overcoming such barriers, but also on improving the experience for all users, by enabling PDTs to adapt their interfaces automatically according to their needs and preferences, and by opening up a new variety of interaction modes through the use of the users' own mobile devices, such as smartphones, as a means of interaction.

The Project will pay attention to consider the following target groups:

  • Blind people and people with impaired vision
  • Deaf people and people with hearing impairment
  • People with motor impairments
  • People with minor cognitive impairments and/or learning difficulties, difficulties in applying knowledge and carrying out tasks
  • Elderly people
  • People who are not familiar with ICT

Description of the way to implement the initiative

APSIS4all is implementing two different approaches:

  • The first one is to provide users with a card that stores their needs and preferences. Once they get to a terminal, it changes the settings to suit user preferences. That way, public terminals adapt to you and not the other way around. They will be able to change the text size, background colours,include voice output  options, add help content or simplify the interaction, among other features.
  • The second approach shifts the public terminal operation to the Internet, so that you can preset the trip tickets you will purchase in a TVM or the money you want to take out from an ATM from your laptop or smartphone. The system will send you a reference code that you only have to show to the machine to get your money out or print your tickets.

Technology solution

APSIS4all proposes an activation protocol that does not require users to carry out any additional action or, at most, it requires a minimal gesture, such as touching the RF reader with a contactless smartcard or NFC-enabled mobile. The APSIS4all activation protocol is common for all users, independently of their needs and preferences. For the first time in the banking and transport sectors, APSIS4all plans to use the specification EN 1332-4. This enables a large number of different combinations, suiting many needs and preferences.

Moreover, APSIS4all foresees enabling multichannel interactions with the PDTs. The use of mobile devices for requesting the service, and then confirming it in the PDT reader (i.e. NFC or 2D-barcode reader), is a very innovative feature that augments the range of interaction modes available to the end-user.

Main results, benefits and impacts

The expected impacts at the end of the pilot are:

  • All PDT users will be able to personalise interfaces according to their needs.
  • Service providers will provide easy-to-use ways for users to carry out personalisation of services.
  • Service providers will develop a series of personalised interfaces during the deployment.
  • Service providers will provide multimodal services according to users' already declared needs and preferences.
  • Validation in real-life settings in Barcelona (ES) and Paderborn (DE) of the deployed services by a representative group of citizens, including target users (people with disabilities, older people, and people who are not familiar with ICT), as well as the general public. Each pilot site plans to test its service with at least 1500 users (3000 in total).
  • The pilot will accelerate the deployment of personalised services and accessible to all people in this technology field.
  • Service providers will attract a wider 'client' base as their services become more accessible and usable. As a consequence, a higher. number of transactions is expected due to attracting more customers
  • Service providers will need less additional support to certain clients, therefore it will imply saving on time and increasing productivity.
  • Service providers will get a leading position on the market (better social image and a competitive advantage over other companies).

Track record of sharing

One of the main goals of this project is the provision of economic evidence on the costs and benefits and business cases of accessible, usable and personalised PDT services to encourage decision-makers to adopt the APSIS4all approach.

During the second and third year big efforts will be devoted to the creation of guidelines and economic evidence for the industry to adopt the APSIS4all solution. The main target will be service providers as they are market drivers.

Lessons learnt

  1. There are still great barriers for Public Digital Terminals. Once architectural and hardware barriers are overcome, user interfaces are still far from being usable and accessible.
  2. In order to encourage other companies and public institutions to adopt the APSIS4all solution, the project must provide not only a relevant pilot and viability evidence, but it must also be based in widely adopted standards. APSIS4all must ensure the interoperability of the solution throughout Europe.
  3. There is a need of a certification that allows users to identify whether a Public Digital Terminal is APSIS4all compatible or not and to which degree.
  4. Personalisation is a message more inclusive than accessibility and breaks down the barrier between people with and without disabilities when dealing with technology.
  5. PDTs need to harmonise the personalisation of user interfaces according to their context. For instance, Automatic Teller Machines need to put a lot of effort into ensuring security whereas Ticket Vending Machines need to focus on information architecture.

Case Info

Website URL:
Start date:
Operational date:
31 January 2013


Target Users or Group:
Any citizen, Older people (60+), People with disability, People with no or poor digital literacy
Cities working on e-Inclusion (Archived), Communities of practice in inclusive entrepreneurship, eAccessibility practice, policy, monitoring and impact, eInclusion, ePractice, IT-Governance, Procurement, IT & Standards (PITS), Promoting eAccessibility, Service provision through TV for seniors, TEST Community, TestJavierFuentes
Case status:
Funding source:
Private sector, Public funding EU
Geographic coverage:
Austria, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom
Implementation cost:
Not applicable / Not available
eAccessibility, personalisation, Public digital terminals
Technology choice:
Accessibility-compliant (minimum WAI AA), Mainly (or only) open standards, Proprietary technology
My languages:
Dutch, English, French, German, Greek, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Sign Language, Spanish, Swedish
eAccessibility, eInclusion, ICT and Aging
Type of service:
IT Infrastructures and products
Yearly cost:
Not applicable / Not available
Return on investment:
Not applicable / Not available
Overall implementation approach:
Private sector
Type of initiative:
Project or service