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Phones are an integral part of our daily lives, and being able to communicate via phone is almost essential. With hearing loss or hearing impairment, this may mean assistive technology designed to help you take part in the conversation. This budding technology now includes apps for phone captioning.

While special captioning phone systems are available for home, the reality of today’s world is that many of us are regularly on the go and using cell phones. This is where phone-captioning apps come in. Initially, users reported that these apps and similar services were less than accurate, could be delayed or were even incompatible with certain phones, hampering conversation to be sure. As technology continues to advance, so do these important apps that help those with hearing loss stay connected and part of the conversation.

Many apps for phone captioning are now available. If you’re in the market for one, here are some of the leading apps to consider:

Innocaption
This free app is available for iPhone and Android and relies on patented technology and live stenographers instead of simply voice recognition software. According to the website, it’s as easy as registering, downloading the app, then sharing your Innocaption phone number with friends and family. CEO Joe Duarte started the company after seeing an important need. “My dream, since I started using hearing aids at age 4, was to be able to use the phone like everyone else. It was not until I discovered this technology that I felt like I was able to function on the phone at the same level as someone with normal hearing.”

ClearCaptions

Also free, this app promises “accurate near real-time phone captioning” and offers free ongoing support. Conversations are automatically saved for later review, fonts can be changed in the display, and the app is available for both IOS and Android phones. ClearCaptions was founded in 2011 and has made it their goal to make communication easier for those in the hard-of-hearing community.

Hamilton® CapTel®

From the makers of the CapTel captioning phones, this app makes it possible to listen while you read the conversation and talk. Like the other apps, this phone-captioning app is available for both IOS and Android and requires a simple registration and download before jumping into the conversation. According to the website, “since 2003, Hamilton® CapTel® has made more than 100 million captioned telephone conversations possible for individuals with hearing loss.”

CaptionCall

For those that prefer a larger screen, this app provides captioning of phone calls on iPads. According to the website, this service requires a “CaptionCall account, an Apple® iPad® 2 or later, and a Wi-Fi or cellular Internet connection.” Captions can also be saved for review in the future.

Can’t get enough captions? There are apps out there to caption your favorite movies and TV shows and apps to caption in-person conversations.

Technology is advancing at lightning speed and making communication for those with hearing impairment easier than ever. Whether it’s a captioning phone at home, a captioning app on your mobile phone, the latest hearing aid features or assistive devices, there are more options every day to help those with hearing loss hear life fully.

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