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SRV Canada VRS – Canadian Video Relay Service

Our Industrial Design partner DDSTUDIO engaged Powell Design to design the SRV Canada VRS Video Relay Service for the deaf, hard of hearing and speech-impaired community throughout Canada. Deaf, hard of hearing or speech-impaired Canadians use SRV Canada VRS to access and make telephone calls using Internet and cell-phone based technologies. VRS callers are connected with a sign language interpreter who provides real time interpretation for telephone calls.

Both native iOS and Windows applications were designed to look and feel identical—even though the design systems on these platforms differ greatly. As a result, the user experience is consistent regardless of the platform.

Our work began with extensive research with deaf users and interpreters. We observed the challenges that deaf users face when trying to communicate in their native language (ASL or LSQ sign). We chronicled the journeys of the deaf users and then set out to design a system that would best address their needs.

The UX was developed using black and white wireframes and then tested with users. Then the UI design (selected by the client from 3 unique concepts) was applied to the UX in the form of a robust prototype. That prototype was tested once again with users and ultimately served as the key form of communication with the implementation team.


  • Extensive research at various project stages with deaf users and interpreters. Insights and learnings were applied at each stage.
  • A single, consistent application design for both native iOS and Windows platforms
  • A seamless integration of all 4 official Canadian languages: English, French, ASL and LSQ.
  • Due to the success of the SRV / VRS end-user application, we were also awarded the design of a completely new application for the interpreters.

SRV Canada VRS - Canadian Video Relay Service
ClientSRV Canada VRSYear2019PartnerDDSTUDIO

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