BrainPort  Vision Pro 



The new BrainPort  Vision Pro is a 2nd generation oral electronic vision aid that provides electro-tactile stimulation to aid profoundly blind patients in orientation, mobility, and object recognition as an adjunctive device to other assistive methods such as the white cane or a guide dog.

BrainPort Vision Pro translates digital information from a wearable video camera into gentle electrical stimulation patterns on the surface of the tongue. Users feel moving bubble-like patterns on their tongue which they learn to interpret as the shape, size, location and motion of objects in their environment. Some users have described it as being able to “see with your tongue”.

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The BrainPort Vision Pro vision aid is a headset that contains a small video camera, user controls, a rechargeable battery, and the tongue array. The headset is fully adjustable and available in 3 different sizes to accommodate most users.

The camera works in a variety of lighting conditions and has an adjustable field of view. The tongue array contains 394 electrodes and is connected to the headset via a flexible cable so it can’t be dropped and lost. When in use, white pixels from the camera are felt on the tongue as strong stimulation, black pixels as no stimulation, and gray levels as medium levels of stimulation.

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USA - Rx Only




The BrainPort Vision Pro is being used by individuals with no usable vision, both congenitally blind and with acquired blindness. Good candidates for using the BrainPort Vision Pro are people that have completed conventional blind rehabilitation training and are comfortable using conventional assistive tools.  A non-surgical solution, BrainPort Vision Pro does not affect the eyes. This is important in the event future research offers better alternatives for people who are totally blind.

Physician holding a tablet


BrainPort Vision Pro user going through training

Supervised training is necessary prior to using the BrainPort Vision Pro device independently. Training is offered through certified, independent training facilities. A typical training course is 10 hours of one-on-one training, over a three-day period, including customized content for the individual user.   

Ready to buy or try a BrainPort Vision Pro?  Fill out the patient survey here to determine if you are a good candidate.  A Certified Trainer will contact you to discuss the next steps!

For the Chinese survey, please click here (中文).

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this vision?

No, the BrainPort Vision Pro system is classified as an oral electronic vision aid. It works like a 394-point refreshable Braille display from which you learn to interpret the bubble-like patterns on your tongue as representative of objects in their surroundings. A current user told us, “I do not see images as if I were sighted, but if I look at a soccer ball I feel a round solid disk on my tongue. The stimulation on the tongue works very much like pixels on a visual screen”.

Will it work for me?

The technology works best for individuals who have no useful vision (light perception or no light perception), have already completed traditional blind rehabilitation programs, and are committed to training and practice. Individuals with medical electrical implants or oral health issues should consult a physician prior to BrainPort Vision Pro use.

What does stimulation feel like on my tongue?

Electrical stimulation can best be described as sparkling water or vibrations on the tongue. You control the strength of the signal to maintain a comfortable sensation.

Can I try the system before I buy it?

Yes, we offer a free 1-hour trial at each of our partner training facilities! This will give you a high-level understanding of the BrainPort Vision Pro system and how it works. You can then decide if you would like to attend a complete training program. If you are training in the USA, a prescription from your healthcare provider for the BrainPort Vision Pro is required before the 1-hour trial can begin.

Tell me about the complete training program.

A typical training course is 10 hours, spread over a 3-day period, with a certified instructor. The training sessions consist of a series of exercises to help the user understand the information they are feeling on their tongue. In the USA, the training is currently offered at one of our independent training sites in NY City, Chicago, San Francisco, New Orleans, San Antonio, Madison, WI and Springfield, Missouri (we will add more sites in the coming months). Training is also currently offered in Milan, Italy and Hong Kong. You are responsible for the cost of the training, (to be determined by the independent training facility) plus all your travel, and living costs while attending training. If you decide to purchase the BrainPort Vision Pro at the time of training, we will deduct the training fee from the price of the system. If you are training in the USA, a prescription from your healthcare provider for the BrainPort Vision Pro is required before training begins.

How do I get started?

There are some health conditions that would limit the use of the system. Simply click here to fill out a patient survey to determine if you are a good candidate. Once this is reviewed, a certified instructor will be in touch to arrange a location and dates to complete the training. If you are training in the USA, a prescription from your healthcare provider for the BrainPort Vision Pro is required before training can begin.

What is included with the BrainPort Vision Pro?

BrainPort Vision Pro package includes the headset with integral video camera, padded carrying case, 2 rechargeable lithium batteries, battery charger, and user manual.

Will my insurance cover the cost?

We have initiated a program to help potential BrainPort Vision Aid users to apply for reimbursement through their healthcare insurer, either private or government funded. Wicab has contracted with an independent company that would work with you and your physician, to obtain pre-authorization for the BrainPort Vision Pro. There would be no cost to you or your physician to apply, and this company has a high success rate in helping individuals obtain pre-authorization for medical devices. Veterans, the VA has been purchasing the BrainPort Vision Pro for profoundly blind veterans. Contact your local VIST coordinator for more information.

What is the warranty?

The BrainPort Vision Pro comes with a full two (2) year warranty. If there is a problem with the device, simply contact our Service Team and we will repair or replace the device.

How do I clean the IOD?

We recommend that you clean the Intra Oral Device (IOD or tongue array), once per week using one of the cleansers listed below. Following cleaning, thoroughly rinse the IOD with tap water to remove any residual cleanser and allow to air-dry. The cleansers listed below have been tested and shown to be compatible with the materials used in the IOD. Read the BrainPort Vision Pro Instructions for Use, included with each device for more information regarding cleaning your device. Approved Cleansers:

  • 70% isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol)
  • 70% ethyl alcohol (ethanol)

BrainPort Vision Aid in the News

Reading with the Tongue: Individual Differences Affect the Perception of Ambiguous Stimuli with the BrainPort  CHI '20, April 2019

Blind teen raising money for technology to help him see the world around him, April 2019

BrainPort Training in Chile  (Spanish Language) Teletrece 13, December 2018

BrainPort Vision Pro  Closing The Gap, November 2018

Performance of Real-world Functional Tasks Using an Updated Oral Electronic Vision Device in Persons Blinded by Trauma  Optometry and Vision Science, September 2018

Seeing with the Brain  Wisconsin People & Ideas Magazine, Winter 2018

Erik Weihenmayer's Wall of Dreams   Real Sports w/Bryant Gumbel / HBO, December 2017

Device uses touch as a substitute for sight   Madison Magazine, October 2017

Sight: It's On The Tip of Your Tongue   Ever Widening Circles, October 2017

Seeing With Your Tongue   The New Yorker, May 2017

Tasting Sight   Vimeo, November 2016

High-tech vision: Nonsurgical device allows blind to gauge surroundings   TribLIVE, November 2016

BrainPort creates brighter future for blind Americans   Fox 2 now St. Louis, October 2016

Finding Vision and Hope Through Modern Technology   Sandy's View, August 2016

Technology Helps a Blind Cubs Fan "See" The Action   CBS 2 Chicago, July 2016

A taste of vision: Device translates from camera to brain, via the tongue   University of Wisconsin-Madison News,   July 2016

BrainPort Generates Hope on Father's Day  The Chicago Lighthouse, June 2016

Device for the Profoundly Blind Uses Tongue Electrodes OIS@ASCRS 2016 Mtg., May 2016

Taste the Sights Around You?   Penn State University, April 2016

New Technology Innovations  (Chinese language), Beijing TV, April 2016

Wicab, Inc. Meets with the China Disabled Persons Federation  (Chinese language), January 2016

The Ophthalmologist Magazine Innovation Award for 2015  The Ophthalmologist, December 2015

Gift of Sight: Community donates device to help blind woman see  WOIO-19 CBS Cleveland, November 2015

Could an electric lollipop help blind people to get around?  Science Museum, London, October 2015

Argentine Journalist Discovers New Hope at Chicago Lighthouse  The Chicago Lighthouse, September 2015

An Artist: How Technology Helped Emilie Gossiaux Overcome Blindness to Rediscover Her Process  Paste, September 2015

First BrainPort patient trained at Chicago Lighthouse following FDA approval  The Chicago Lighthouse, July 2015

Seeing with Your Tongue WTMJ-4 NBC Milwaukee, July 6,2015

FDA Approves Device that Lets Blind People See with Their Tongue  NBC News, June 19, 2015

Device That Helps Blind See With Their Tongues Just Won FDA Approval  Popular Science, June 2015

Wicab's Wearable Vision Device Nears U.S. Market, Thanks to Google  EXOME, February 2015

Seeing in Tongues  RadioLab, October 2014

New Device Lets Blind Boy See Through Sensations Associated Press, August 2014

Research Insights: The BrainPort Device Akron Children's Hospital, 2013

The Wicab BrainPort: using the tongue to "see"  British Library, July 2011

The blind rock climber who sees with his tongue  BBC, May 2011

Giving Sight Carnegie Mellon University, 2011

British Soldier Blinded in Iraq Trials New Technology  The Telegraph, March 2010

BrainPort Lets the Blind See with the Tongues  SingularityHUB, November 2009

Tasting the Light: Device Lets the Blind "See" with Their Tongues  Scientific American, August 2009

'Lollipop' Device Helps Reveal Shapes To The Blind  Washington Post, July 2009

A Tongue for an Eye: Device Challenges Conventional Vision  NIH (National Institute of Health) Record, March 2009

The Blind Climber Who "Sees" With His Tongue  Discover Magazine, July 2008

The Brain That Changes Itself: into the abyss  The Telegraph, July 2008

Mixed Feelings  Wired Magazine, March 2007

Technology May Give Blind A Touch of Sight  CBS Evening News, January 2007


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