Modern technology has improved telephone communication for deaf people. Click here to learn all the different ways deaf people can
Communication is the root of all human interaction. Without it, we can’t share our thoughts, emotions, and needs. It’s an essential part of connecting with others.
Despite its significance, telephone communication can be challenging for deaf individuals. Thankfully, technological advances have led to the development of different tools that make telephone communication much more straightforward.
This article will explore some of these tools, list some helpful resources, and empower deaf people to make their telephone communications a smoother and more enjoyable experience.
The telephone has always been a source of frustration and anxiety for the deaf community. Traditional phone conversations rely solely on audio, which means missing important information, dealing with misunderstandings, and feeling left out.
Before the TTY, the first telephone device for the deaf, we depended on family and friends to facilitate phone calls for us. There were no private phone calls.
But technology has provided new solutions that bridge this communication gap and make telephone calls accessible for deaf people.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to telephone communication for deaf people. Just as deafness is a spectrum, some deaf people may have different preferences and different levels of hearing loss.
Below are some of the solutions and tools that can make telephone communication for deaf people easier:
IP Relay uses speech recognition to convert spoken words into text, enabling deaf people to read what the other person is saying in real-time.
These apps can be installed on mobile devices, allowing for convenient communication 24/7, without needing other devices or services.
Some IP Relay providers include:
IP CTS enables deaf people to communicate with hearing people over an Internet line, whether on a smartphone or the web. With this service, deaf people type their messages and read incoming messages on a screen; this is with or without the help of an operator. The operator relays the messages to the hearing party and then types their responses back to the deaf person.
Here are some IP CTS providers:
Video Relay Service (VRS) is a popular solution used by many deaf people. VRS uses interpreters who translate sign language into spoken language and vice versa.
Using a webcam, computer, or mobile device, you connect with an interpreter who is proficient in American Sign Language (ASL) or another sign language.
The interpreter then contacts the hearing party and relays the conversation to the deaf individual via video.
Some companies that provide Video Relay Services (VRS):
While the tools mentioned above can greatly improve telephone communication for deaf people, here are a few tips to enhance the overall experience.
Here are some organizations that provide resources for deaf people to improve their telephone communication experiences:
Telephone communication for deaf people can be challenging, but it doesn't have to be. With the advances in technology and accessible software and tools, deaf people can now hold telephone conversations just like anyone else.
Through learning about the different telephone communication methods mentioned in this article, deaf people can empower themselves to enjoy more effortless and meaningful conversations over the phone than ever before.