Killer Interview Question: How Would You Design A Phone For Deaf People?

Another addition to Lifehacker's ever-growing killer interview questions collection: How would you design a phone for deaf people?.

Picture: Getty Images

This question is apparently used at Google. There are several potential angles you could explore. You could point out that this kind of design would benefit from focus group research with actual deaf users, rather than trying to second-guess their needs. You could note that modern smartphones are already very useful for the deaf or hard-of-hearing, since they offer text-based alternatives for communication. In that context, accessorising existing models or adding new software might make more sense than a separate (and potentially more expensive) alternative.

The picture above shows a 1984 system which allowed a deaf person to type a message and have it sent over a conventional phone line as a synthesised voice. That would require a lot less equipment today.

How would you answer the question?

The 20 Toughest Job Interview Questions Heard At Apple, Google, Twitter, And Others [Business Insider]


    Yes they have induction coils to transmit directly to their hearing aid. Also ever see a deaf person using a 3G phone for a video chat, they are the only people who find that really useful.

    Another stupid article about supposedly clever interview questions that probably have nothing to do with the job.

      The ability to think critically and creatively would be relevant to a wide range of jobs, especially those at Google. But I wouldn't expect someone who only takes a question at face value to understand that.

      It's not about the question. These types of questions have no right or wrong answers. They're asked to see how you think. They are extremely useful

    I always wondered until I saw this. Tommy Edison is a blind dude who does youtube videos about being blind, here he demonstrates using his iPhone.

    Last edited 20/08/14 12:51 pm

    If you're looking for additional questions that interviewers ask during the Google interview, check out this blog post:

    - Lewis @ Impact Interview

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