Has anyone used the CapTel Relay Service

Discussion in 'Deaf Products & Technologies' started by lonetundrawolf, Oct 23, 2005.

  1. lonetundrawolf

    lonetundrawolf New Member

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    I have only been using this service for a little over a week, I must say it takes some getting use too.

    Does anyone else use this service.....have a comment about them?
     
  2. Tousi

    Tousi Well-Known Member

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    I have one; I've been a beta tester for this appliance for over 2 years and I like it.....
     
  3. Dennis

    Dennis New Member

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    Have it, love it. Yeah, I think I remember that it took a bit getting used to, but now it's second nature.
     
  4. cabaca

    cabaca New Member

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    I use it for work and home and I like it alot. I got good speech and it saves me alot of time than TTY with relay svc. No more saying "GA" lol
     
  5. daloweman

    daloweman New Member

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    Is Captel compatible with Vonage

    Does anyone know if CapTel is compatible with VOIP such as Vonage?
     
  6. Dennis

    Dennis New Member

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    You're supposed to call CapTel customer service with those kinds of questions. (888) 269-7477
     
  7. horselover61

    horselover61 Active Member

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    Do they have a website for it?? I would like to look it up. Thanks :D
     
  8. HiBluE01

    HiBluE01 New Member

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    No, I don't have it.
     
  9. diehardbiker

    diehardbiker Active Member

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  10. lonetundrawolf

    lonetundrawolf New Member

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    What is the deal with 2 line state relay....no body seems to know how to make that work... Can you use the captel phone with two line state relay....

    Thanks for any info
     
  11. Dennis

    Dennis New Member

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    If your state offers it, 2-Line CapTel means that you can use two telephone lines in your home to enhance CapTel so that:

    1) You can turn captions on/off at any time during the call, and
    2) No one needs to know the CapTel 800 number to call me, when they call me I just pick up the phone and the captions are connected on the second line.

    There are a lot more benefits that even I didn't know about until you asked that questions. There's a FAQ here:

    http://www.captionedtelephone.com/2linefaq.phtml

    Again, it's only available in some states, I don't know how many but it looks like Virginia is one of them.
     
  12. navyman

    navyman New Member

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    I recently looked at the captel website and was intrigued by the 2-line captel feature. Although I'm pretty happy with using VRS for telecom purposes because of the ability to understand the emotional nuances through an interpreter, I am thinking about trialing a captel at work to see how well it works. My wife and I did participate in a captel trial in our home in Maryland a few years ago, but we were not impressed with the quality of translation by the captioning process. When we switched over to Vonage, it rendered the captel device totally useless, so the $595 captel was sent back to Ultratec with a "thanks, but no thanks" note. I hope that the quality of captel has improved since then. Can anyone vouch for captel quality and effectiveness, especially in comparison to using VRS?

    Thanks,

    navyman
     
  13. Taric25

    Taric25 New Member

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    Captel with Vonage and vs VRS

    That was a probelm with your Vonage service. You should have contacted Ultratech about that. Here's what you can do, to get your CapTel to work with Vonage.

    Remove any routers, existing house wiring, splitters, etc. and ensure the Vonage adapter is connected directly to the Cable/DSL modem and directly to the CapTel. Connect all your other equipment, such as a router, to the redundant "Ethernet" jack, on the Vonage adapter.

    1) Log into your Vonage account at http://www.vonage.com
    2) Click on "Feature"
    3) Click "Configure" at Bandwidth Saver options
    4) Move slider towards "Highest Sound Quality"

    If you still have problems, Vonage on how to disable the "Bandwidth Saver" feature for your VoIP line or setup for "Highest Sound Quality". If you're still having problems, contact Ultratech.

    CapTel call quality improves on a daily basis. I remember it was not as good as when I recently used it. I also noticed that Spanish captions are not as good as the English ones. (I also speak Spanish.) This is because the Spanish captioners are not as experianced, with FastTran voice recognition software, as the English captioners, because they don't get as many calls. Except for Federal VRS, Spanish CapTel is the only relay service that is not 24 hours. I've also noticed that the captions differ highly, depending on the individual captioner. I've called CapTel Customer Service many times to praise wonderful captioners and complain about bad captioners. If you don't let them know, they won't know how to improve the service.
    CapTel and VRS are very different, but in order to compare "Apples-to-Apples" ("the same things"), I'll compate VRS with VCO to CapTel.

    CapTel gives you exactly every word the Hearing person says. This can be good, because it gives you the exact message, however, if English is not your first language, you may have a difficult time understanding idioms. CapTel does not subject you to the mercy of a specific interpreter's interpretation of what the Hearing person says. For example, I remember I was speaking with one of my friends in Spanish with VRS with VCO, and my friend said something I didn't understand. I had to tell my friend to hold on, while the interpreter gave me a different interpretation. I still did not understand, so the interpreter fingerspelled it, and I understood it. You do not have this problem with CapTel, because every captioner will caption almost exactly the same... almost. CapTel usually has a 2-3 second delay, where VRS has almost no delay, but addresses and proper names can be a nightmare in VRS (unless you're using Hands On VRS with AIM or Videosign, CSD VRS with a webcam or VP call, or i711 VRS, where the interpreter can type it). In addition, VRS interpreters are more dependant on asking Hearing people to repeat themselves, whereas CapTel captioners cannot, so you may notice that captions are correct the first time around, but in a VRS call, the interpreter may ask the Hearing person to repeat. Also, CapTel allows you to save the entire conversation. If you have CapTel with USB, you can even save it on your computer or print it. It's editable text. The major downfall to CapTel is, unless you have good residual hearing, you cannot destinguish the caller's tone as easily as you can from Sign Language. CapTel also allows you to call absolutely anyone, including relay. You cannot call relay with VRS. For example, if you call one of your Deaf friends on the videophone, but your Deaf friend doesn't answer, the videophone does not have an answering machine. If your friend has a i2eye videophone or webcam, then your Deaf friend will not know you called. If your Deaf friend has a Sorenson videophone, the only thing the your Deaf friend will see is "missed call". If you have CapTel, you can call VRS, with your CapTel, to leave your Deaf friend a video e-mail, and your Deaf friend can be notified via both e-mail and pager, such as the Sidekick. Also, if your state allows for translation, you can either use STS (Speech-to-Speech) or switch your CapTel to VCO mode, to speak with someone in another language, such as Spanish or French, and the relay operator will translate. Although it is possible to use VRS for Spanish, there is not French VRS. Also, you cannot call relay with VRS, so if you want to make a relay call, such as calling a TTY user, that is not possible with VRS. It is possible with CapTel. CapTel also allows you to get captions for an external answering machine, whereas VRS does not.

    My solution is simple. Why not use both? I already have a videophone, but I'm going to apply for a CapTel with USB soon. One of my Hard-of-Hearing friends uses VRS with CapTel. He uses VRS with VCO, and his VCO is a CapTel. That way, he can read the captions during the call for added clarity as well as save the conversation.
     
  14. navyman

    navyman New Member

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  15. Taric25

    Taric25 New Member

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    Federal CapTel swap

    Yes, I myself use Vonage, and I have Motorola VT2142, which supports 2 phone lines and has a redundant ethernet jack.
    I love Comcast. I have BrightHouse, which runs through RoadRunner now, and it's even faster.

    Anyway, you should still double check that the slider bar is moved all the way towards "Highest Sound Quality", just to be sure.
    You're welcome. The setup works best with 2-Line Captel, as most interpreters are uncomfortable about calling the toll-free number for CapTel, to establish VCO, but I have convinced many of them to do it. With 2-Line CapTel, it's a lot easier. Also, your state's Telecommunications Access Program may also allow you to get a free CapTel.

    If I were you, here's what I'd do. I'd apply for both, and then I'd use the state-provided CapTel at work and the Federal CapTel at home. That way, with 1-line CapTel, you don't have to pay for long distance! I know you have Vonage, but I think it also applies for international calls.
     
  16. GraysonPeddie

    GraysonPeddie Eye/Hear/Speech Impaired Premium Member

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    I'm hoping to have a CapTel for cell phones, but I don't think they will have it available for cell phones pretty soon.
     
  17. Taric25

    Taric25 New Member

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    CapTel Cell Phones

    Actually, I was just talking to Illinois Relay Account Manager, Mrs. Emma Danielson today, about that, on the videophone. She said that Ultratech is developing a wireless CapTel. How people will get it through their state relay programs, I have no idea.
     
  18. GraysonPeddie

    GraysonPeddie Eye/Hear/Speech Impaired Premium Member

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    Wireless CapTel... Do I have to connect it to a cell phone, just like an Ameriphone Q90-D TTY (it's a portable TTY but I had to set my cell phone to analog in order to get Q90-D TTY to work)?
     
  19. Taric25

    Taric25 New Member

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    No Idea About Wireless CapTel

    I have no idea. It's still in development.
     
  20. GraysonPeddie

    GraysonPeddie Eye/Hear/Speech Impaired Premium Member

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