In the past decade there has been an increase in speech pathology in children of preschool and school age. More than 200 million children in the world need regular speech therapy. Teachers, doctors and parents have expressed alarm about it. The Belarusian startup CatZu may help them.
CatZu is a mobile game for children with speech difficulties. On the screen the child sees a cheerful cat and repeats all cat’s reactions. This is how in the form of games the child does exercises for the development of articulatory motor skills.
It is the world’s first virtual speech therapist that uses computer vision technology and neural networks in their articulation exercises. You can see how the app works on the youtube ITitov channel.
The founder of the startup, Antonina Sudilovskaya, devoted a lot of time to restoring speech and hearing to children. During her maternity leave she began to explore various areas of the IT industry and realized that technology can make a great contribution to inclusive education.
CatZu participated in the Social Weekend competition. The team made it to the final and received financial support. With this money the startup purchased tablets to test its MVP. The devices were handed out to specialists in preschool institutions, and the feedback so far have been only positive.
With a virtual cat articulatory gymnastics seems less boring to children. Many real speech therapists ask for more exercises to be included in the app. Now the startup is looking for a profile investor. The team needs funds for marketing research that will have to be done after the launch of the product.
In CatZu parents can see reports of their child’s progress. In addition, there is a special section for them with useful tips and articles on how to improve children’s speech.