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A New Samsung App Helps Kids With Autism Make Eye Contact

A branded educational game utilizes a smart camera to improve communication skills.

For the past few years, both academic study and anecdotal evidence have pointed to how useful digital and mobile technology can be used to help those with autism.

Now Samsung and its agency Cheil Worldwide have created an educational game app—in partnership with Seoul National University Bundang Hospital and Yonsei University's psychology department—designed to help kids with autism make eye contact. These partners conducted a joint clinical trial with 20 children for eight weeks. Through the smart device’s camera function, the app aims to teach children to better read a person’s mood, remember faces and take photos of themselves exhibiting a range of emotions and different poses. It includes seven interactive missions featuring a point system and various rewards, sound and visual effects to keep players motivated.

In the short film, we meet a mom and her young son Jong-Hyun, who trained with the "Look At Me" app during the eight week trial. By the end, the 11-year-old boy is laughing and hugging his mom. Pretty emotional stuff. The brand says its "Look At Me" app helped 60% of children tested with it to improve their eye contact during conversation.

The app can be downloaded from Google Play for a range of Samsung smart devices including Galaxy S5, Galaxy S4, Galaxy S3, Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy Zoom 2, Galaxy Zoom and Galaxy Tab S.

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