Landlines and landline gadgets | Assistive Tech Guides From Vital Tech

Landlines and landline gadgets

Last modified: 20th June 2019

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You can find home phones with easy to see or talking functions. There are also ways of making and receiving landline phone calls with smartphones or smart speakers.

 

Mainstream products

There are a number of easy to see phones on the market.  BT offer a number of choices, such as the BT4000 Big Button Phone which has simple features that makes it more accessible. Mainstream retailers sell easy to see phones made by BT and other manufacturers.  Note that some people prefer corded landlines as cordless phones can be easy to misplace and there can be issues with recharging batteries.

 

Specialist products

Geemarc and Doro make a range of specialist phones although these can also be purchased from certain mainstream retailers.   Geemarc also offers talking phones which give audio feedback, such as reading out which buttons have been pressed or enabling spoken menu options. 

For more landline options, check out RNIB’s range of phones or the accessible devices showcased on the Living Made Easy site.

 

Using your smartphone

For those who want to integrate their landline and mobile phones the Invoxia Voice Bridge allows the user to receive landline calls on their mobile. This can be especially useful for enabling integration of contact lists and the use of mobile accessibility features.

 

Using your smart speaker

The Amazon Echo and Google Home smart speakers both allow you to call UK landlines and mobile phones for free through your home broadband internet connection. Additionally, the Amazon Echo Connect accessory can link a home phone line with an Amazon Echo smart speaker, making it possible to make and receive phone calls from your landline with simple voice commands using any Alexa-enabled smart speaker. Once Echo Connect is installed, all linked Amazon Echo speakers will announce the name or number associated with incoming calls made to your home phone.

 

Handy hints

If you want to listen to phone calls at the same time as other audio, then the Duo-Comm 2 splitter box audio mixer available from RNIB is a handy gadget. The splitter box has different modes. For example, the user can set it up to receive the phone call through one ear piece and the audio from screen reader software through the other.

 

Useful links

Try online retailers such as Amazon

RNIB’s range of phones

Living made easy website compares available options

 

For more on using smart speakers with landlines, refer to Amazon Echo Connect Support and Google Home Help.