Smartphone communication for the hard of hearing

TAG Consortium | Better tech for the hard of hearing. 


TAG is a consortium of the full range of national and regional organisations in the

UK working on behalf of deaf people, and promotes equality of access to electronic

communications, including telecommunications and broadcasting, for deaf, deafened,

hard-of-hearing, deafblind people and sign language users.


TAG would like to put on record its support for the response to Ofcom's consultation

"Digital Dividend Review: 550-630MHz and 790-854MHz, Consultation on detailed

award design" dated 6 June 2008 that has been submitted by RNID (Royal National

Institute for Deaf People). What RNID has said in its response echoes what TAG has

said in earlier responses to consultations on the DDR, and we have the same concerns

as RNID that the needs of disabled, and specifically deaf, people are not being

adequately taken into account in this process, and that they will never be met by a

simple market-led approach. 


How can you use phones to support the deaf and the hard of hearing?  


The deaf and the hard of hearing face many challenges in communication. You should play your role in supporting them to live their lives normally. You can use technology to help the deaf and the hard of hearing in society.  

Mobile phones can help you communicate with your friends and family around the world. You can use the phones to communicate with other people who do not understand sign language if you are deaf and hard of hearing. Some useful features on phones include:  



Vibration alerts help the deaf and the hard of hearing on the incoming calls and messages. You can, therefore, feel or see when a person calls you or reads the message on time and replies appropriately.  


2.Haptic feedback  

It lets you know when the screen is touched or when a key is pressed to help you avoid making mistakes when operating the phone.  You may not hear the audio alert tones, but you will feel the haptic feedback that makes it easier for you to use the phone in the best way possible.  


3.Hearing loop  

Most smartphones have a hearing loop that makes it possible to transmit your calls to the hearing aid.  Such smartphones have to be connected to smart hearing aids for them to work appropriately.  


4.Bluetooth connectivity  

Bluetooth connectivity has improved the process of communication and other phone applications. You can connect your hearing aid to your phone through Bluetooth connectivity. Use it to communicate to your employees, friends, and family and listen to music too.  


5.Adjustable volume  

Smartphones allow you to change the volume to the level you prefer according to the state of your hearing. You can conveniently adjust the sound volume that gets to your hearing aid right from your phone.  


6.Video compatibility  

Smartphones are compatible with most video versions, meaning that you can watch the video messages through the device. Record a video communicating with the other people in sign language, and they will answer with a video or text. Some video-sharing platforms such as WhatsApp and Facebook messenger make it possible to share and receive videos, enhancing communication. The applications can only be used in combination with internet connectivity.  


7.Front and back camera  

The presence of the front and the back camera on your phone make it possible to take photos and videos during precious moments. They can also be used for communication. For instance, you can make or receive a video call to communicate using sign language to share laughter and the environment.

In conclusion, technology is improving, and you are supposed to be part of it to improve your life significantly. New features are being included in electronic devices such as phones and personal computers. Give your views on the scientific forums on how technology should be used, and in so doing, new technologies could be developed that will improve your life and that of the other people in society.  

Date Published: 2021-09-10 20:48:58

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