This work describes an incidental finding from a longitudinal Human-Robot Interaction study that was investigating whether a robot showing emotions during interactions with older adults was perceived differently than to a robot that did not display emotions during the interaction. During this study we noted that some older adults found it hard to understand what the robot was saying, regardless of the volume of speech generated by the robot. The fact that they did not have problems in understanding the researcher led us to investigating this accessibility-related issue in more depth. This paper describes the implications of this finding and recommendations on how to approach future work.
van Maris, A., Dogramadzi, S., Zook, N., Studley, M., Winfield, A., & Caleb-Solly, P. (2020). Speech related accessibility issues in social robots. In HRI '20: ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction. , (505-507). https://doi.org/10.1145/3371382.3378379