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A Sip-and-Puff Wireless Remote Control for the Apple iPod

By Jones, Michael; Grogg, Kevin; Anschutz, John; Fierman, Ruth; Assistive Technology, Vol. 20, No. 2, pp. 107-110
Publication Date: 2008

Paper describes modifications to an existing wireless remote control for the Apple iPod enabling its operation using sip-and-puff switches by individuals with limited upper extremity dexterity due to cervical-level spinal cord injury. The circuit board from an AirClick wireless remote control unit by Griffin Technology was modified to function with sip-and-puff switches. Given the operating controls of the iPod, the wireless controller was set up so a short sip activates the Play and Pause functions and an extended sip activates the Power Off function. Each short puff skips to the next song, and an extended puff fast-forwards in 5-second increments within a song. The switches were tested by 30 of the authors’ patients with high-level cervical spinal cord injuries, all of whom were able to use all the functions of the remote controller, which requires minimal sip-and-puff energy to activate. To date, the interface has been developed for iPod models 4G, 5G, iPod photo, iPod mini, and iPod Nano. Limitations to the system, including its inoperable volume-control function, are discussed. Preparation of the article was supported in part by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) of the U.S. Department of Education.
Published by: Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA)   (Website:

This publication is included in the library of the National Rehabilitation Information Center (NARIC), accession number J54872

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