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Assistive, Inclusive & Learning Technologies
by Turning Point Technology
Turning Point, PO Box 310945, New Braunfels, TX 78131-0945, USA
  Phone: (830) 608-9812   FAX: (830) 608-0882
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Voice Carry Over

Frequently asked questions about VCO


What is VCO?
...and how do I use it?

Voice Carry Over (VCO) lets individuals with a hearing loss continue to use their own voice on the telephone.

VCO gives people the ability to speak directly to the person they are calling, then read that person's response on their TTY or Uniphone display. No more straining to hear the response, or asking people to repeat themselves. Because you can read the caller's words, the meaning comes through clearly every time. And the conversation maintains a personal, natural feeling, because people are using their own voice.

VCO calls can be made one of two ways:
directly between two callers or
with the help of a Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS).

Making Direct VCO Calls - Person to Person
direct v c o call
Direct VCO calls are easiest when both parties have a Uniphone, which is specifically designed for VCO calling. Even if they don't have a Uniphone, people can still make direct VCO calls, as long as both parties have a TTY and a standard telephone handy.

Making a direct VCO call with the Uniphone 1140:
Press the Dial key and type in the phone number for the person you are calling. (The Uniphone 1140 lets you speed-dial the number if you have it saved in the directory.)
Watch the Uniphone display to see if the call is ringing or busy.
When the person you are calling answers, pick up the Uniphone handset and press the <MENU>+<V> keys to send a VCO request. You will see "VCO PLEASE GA" on your Uniphone display. (If you are using a different TTY, simply type your request for using VCO).
When the other person sees your request on their Uniphone or TTY display screen, they will know to pick up the handset to listen.
From this point, you can talk directly to the person on the other end. They will hear your exact words. When you are finished talking, remember to say "GA" or give some indication that it is the other person's turn.

The other person can type their response on the Uniphone (or other TTY) keyboard. You will see their words appear on your display. In this manner, you can talk directly to them and read their reply, privately and naturally.

Making VCO Calls - Via Relay Service
relay v c o call
When using VCO through the Telecommunications Relay Service, you speak directly to the person you are calling. A Communication Assistant (CA) types everything that the other person says so that you can read it on your Uniphone (or other TTY) display.

Making a VCO call through Relay using the Uniphone 1140:
Press the Dial key and type the relay number using the number keys. (The Uniphone 1140 lets you speed-dial the Relay number if you have it saved in the directory.)
When the Relay CA answers, press the <Menu>+<V> key to send a VCO request automatically. You will see VCO PLEASE GA on your display. (If you are using a different TTY, simply type your request to use VCO).
After the CA notifies you that VCO is ready, pick up the handset and tell the CA the number and name of the person you want to call. The CA dials the number.
Watch the display and wait until the CA tells you the call is connected.
Begin speaking to the person you are calling.
When the other person answers, read his or her response on the Uniphone display (the CA types the response).
When you see GA at the end of a line, begin speaking again. Continue speaking and reading until the conversation is finished.
When you are finished, replace the handset and hang up the Uniphone by pressing the <Shift> key and the TTY on/off key at the same time.

NOTE: You may hold the handset for the entire VCO call. You do not need to put the handset down each time you finish speaking. The Uniphone automatically turns off the handset when it receives TTY signals and turns it on again when you speak.


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