Ultratec Inc, Madison, Wis, introduces the CapTel 800i® telephone—a new addition to its captioned phone line of products and services for people with hearing loss. 

Designed for use with high-speed Internet service, the phone features written text captions to help users understand what their callers are saying.

Unlike previous CapTel models that rely on only an analog phone line, the new model connects to a telephone line and an Ethernet/IP connection. The phone line carries the voice portion of the call, and the Ethernet/IP connection automatically links the phone over the Internet to the CapTel captioning service.  

Captioning service operators use voice-recognition technology to transcribe the callers words into text, which is instantly transmitted to the phone over the Internet connection. The captions appear on the phone’s display screen, allowing users to hear the phone conversation and read the text on the display screen, and it can be used on incoming and outgoing calls. Captions can be turned on or off at any time during the call.

It features a 5-inch screen that displays captions in a several sizes and colors, amplification up to 40dB, a phone book, and one-touch access to CapTel customer service. 

Users must have telephone service and high-speed or broadband Internet access. The phone connection can be transmitted via any telephone service, including standard analog line, VOIP connection, DSL, or cable modem telephone service (an analog port is required for use with a digital PBX). The Ethernet connection can be on any basic broadband Internet service, but it does not work with dial-up connections. 

The new phone is expected to be available later this summer.

Ultratec works with relay services, 911 and emergency services, state and federal agencies, and local and national advocacy groups to provide greater accessibility for people with hearing loss.

[Source: Ultratec]