Samsung Electronics Iberia and Cheil Worldwide Spain have launched Unfear, a groundbreaking AI-powered app that filters out specific sounds to protect and calm people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Unlike noise-canceling headphones that block out all sounds, Unfear works in real-time to reduce the volume of trigger sounds, enabling people with autism to stay connected in their everyday lives. The branding of Unfear showcases Samsung’s dedication to using technology for good and further strengthens the branding of Samsung as a socially responsible company.
Addressing Auditory Sensitivity in People with Autism
Autism affects around 70 million people worldwide, and many individuals with autism have auditory sensitivity that can lead to discomfort and anxiety in reaction to certain sounds. Unfear’s technology works with Samsung Galaxy Buds to filter out known trigger sounds, including sounds personalized to the user, in order to protect and calm individuals with ASD and hearing disorders.
A Technology with Purpose
Unfear is part of Samsung’s “Technology with Purpose” program, which aims to create technology that can make a positive impact on society. Through machine learning, Unfear’s algorithm scans thousands of audio libraries in real time, reducing the volume of specific pre-selected noises that cause stress to the individual user, such as sirens, metro noise, street works, barking dogs, ambulances, or crying children.
Testing and Development of Unfear
Samsung and Cheil Worldwide Spain worked with ten Spanish autism organizations and over 100 ASD patients and their families to research and test Unfear. The app has received endorsement from the Spanish Society of Psychiatry and Mental Health.
Features of Unfear
Unfear filters sounds from external environment sources and from all forms of content within devices and mobile phones, including gaming, streaming, movies, music, and social media content. The app can also be voice-controlled for emergency situations, allowing users to immediately seek a “calm mode” in particularly stressful moments. The app also has an SOS option where users can automatically call their emergency contact to get help.
The Big Picture
Unfear is a significant development in the management of auditory sensitivity in people with ASD. With this technology, Samsung is further establishing its brand as a leader in innovation and branding for social good, and Cheil Worldwide Spain’s ability to create meaningful, cutting-edge digital, gaming and mobile innovation. Unfear will be rolled out globally over the course of 2023, providing people with ASD and hearing disorders with a much-needed solution to manage individual sounds and improve their quality of life.