Do your favorite brands universally design their products?

December 1, 2010 at 7:41 am 1 comment

More and more I am finding products that have been created with universal design features integrated in their form and function.  Sure, you will find this mindset permeating kitchen and bath product manufacturers, but how often are you finding a line of products from other manufacturers that take universal design into consideration?  This is exactly why I was so excited to read an article on Panasonic’s current theme to create products “for the people and the earth of tomorrow towards a sustainable co-existence”.

Panasonic exhibited at the Third International Conference for Universal Design in HAMAMATSU 2010 and unveiled their theme and recent product developments.  In true universal design spirit, their efforts are to “provide universal design for a livelier, comfortable and richer lifestyle”, for all product users.

Panasonic displayed multiple products that allow for less maintenance, increased ease of use via reduced physical load, maximized visual access via the use of enlarged print, and provided for text to speech support via voice guidance.  As an Occupational Therapist, it is inspiring to see the multi-faceted approach and analysis of the product in order to determine how one’s physical, sensory and cognitive abilities may impact the overall use.

Unfortunately, I was unable to attend this conference, but am excited to see more companies continue to move in the direction of creating products that are universally designed.  Panasonic appears to be on that bubble of shifting from having just one or a few products in a line that integrate universal design, to the mindset of considering universal design principles from the beginning stages of product design, for every product created. If the end result produces a product that allows for the largest number of consumers to live with increased ease and comfort, why would products be designed any other way?

Penny for your thoughts……


Entry filed under: Universal Design. Tags: , , , , .

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Abbie Sladick  |  December 1, 2010 at 8:50 am

    Panasonic’s desciption to “provide universal design for a livelier, comfortable and richer lifestyle” is inspiring. This is a great thought for the day and certainly leaves me with inspiration to try and make our built enviroments more accessible for everyone today in any way that I can.

    Thanks for taking the time to post!


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