Most movies screened in Germany are dubbed into German, but that creates a problem for the deaf or hearing-impaired, since they cannot rely on the subtitles shown in many other nations.
Researchers at the University of Applied Sciences in Zwickau, Germany, hope they have found a way around that problem with a pair of data-equipped spectacles that can be used to show subtitles in synchronization with the images on the movie screen.
The subtitles in German are available free in Germany and Austria for selected films on current release as a service to the deaf.
The glasses are wirelessly connected to a smartphone, where the subtitles are stored using an app. The special app can even identify the right place in the movie using voice-recognition techology and correctly match up the subtitles to the action on screen.
Developed in conjunction with the company Greta & Starks, the system went on display at the CeBIT computer show which began Monday in Hanover, Germany.
The app that makes the German synchronized text available is called Sparks and has been around since the end of 2013.
It can already be used to follow the text of a movie on a smartphone display, but the hard of hearing need to keep switching their gaze from screen to phone.