Transcript of interview on Vectis Radio on 6th December 2014

Jingle:
A radio station at the heart of the Isle of Wight community, we're Vectis Radio
Kelvin:
Deep Purple, child in time (single edit). You're listening to the mid morning show here on Vectis Radio. Hi to Mike Lucas who congratulated me on playing a bit of daytime Deep Purple. And I've got on the line right now a gentleman who actually can't hear Deep Purple, although he does like it. Good morning Paul.
Paul:
Good morning Kelvin. How are you?
Kelvin:
I'm well thank you and just to explain to the listeners, you are a deaf man but you are using the phone, is that correct?
Paul:
That is absolutely correct. I am actually profoundly deaf. I can't hear anything that you are saying. I actually lost my hearing over a period of time very, very gradually and the system I'm now using is one which has just been introduced into the UK. It's called Next Generation Text System. It was developed by BT, but it is actually available on all telephone networks whether mobile or fixed line or whatever. And it is absolutely superb. What I'm doing I'm reading what you are saying and it is working exactly the same as a normal telephone conversation would do.
Kelvin:
Well that's really interesting. I recall from my own days back in BT that you used to have specialist equipment to enable you to type and read but now you can use more mainstream equipment. Is that right?
Paul:
That is exactly right. I'm actually using just a basic BT telephone now and I'm reading the script on my laptop. But I can use almost any smartphone or mobile phone providing we have a telephone line and an internet connection, it can be any internet connection, then that's all you actually need. There is no specialist equipment required at all. There used to be a lot of specialist equipment with the old system and those deaf people who still have that equipment will still be able to carry on using it under the old rules. But now you don't need any specialist equipment at all and it is quite easy to use as well.
Kelvin:
So I could use my iPad for example?
Paul:
You could use your iPad, in fact the iPad is probably a very good example of being able to use it in a remote situation. Providing you either have a data line and a telephone line or a telephone line and a Wi-Fi connection it would work absolutely perfectly. And it is free to use and because the calls take a little bit longer because of the fact that we have to read what's going on, many providers of the telecom services actually do give a discount. In fact what they do they provide it at zero rated VAT, which is practically a 20% discount on the calls.
Kelvin:
So there's no disadvantage to using this service if you are deaf and I assume that if you can't speak the same applies?
Paul:
It does apply the same. If you have good hearing but you cannot speak then you can actually type the conversation and the relay operator will actually speak to the person that you are calling and then you can hear what they are saying. If you are unable to use your voice that is exactly what you can do. It is a very, very well set up system and probably one of the best in the world at the moment.
Kelvin:
I think it is and I think we should be rightly proud of the team that developed it and the fact that we are probably world leaders in this sort of technology.
Paul:
Absolutely. The team at BT are very approachable. They do understand the problems that deaf people have and there is a help desk which as soon as you've downloaded the application, you will be able to contact the help desk if you have a problem. And they are so helpful. Believe me nobody should be afraid of this technology no matter how old you are, no matter whether you're computer literate or not, have a go with it. It's superb.
Kelvin:
So Paul , that's really great. Where can we find out some more? Is there a website or somebody they can contact to find out more details about this service?
Paul:
Yes there is a website. If you would like to just take this down. The website is ngts.org.uk and at that website you will be able to download the app and also get a lot of information on how it is actually used. It is very, very informative. There's lots of frequently asked questions and answers on there, and as I say if you still have a problem, you can't find anything on the website, go through to the help desk.
Kelvin:
Okay, so that's ngts.org.uk and that has all the information you need and if you know anybody or you are losing your hearing or you have got someone you think might benefit from it, you can go and look for nothing and find out everything you need to know.
Paul:
Absolutely. And really a lot of people have difficulty in admitting they have problems with the telephone. I know I did back in the day. We tend to be in denial of our problems but believe me this really does help you. I wish I'd had it a few years ago.
Kelvin:
Well that's excellent, thank you very much for calling in Paul and if you just hang on the line for a second we are going to take a break and I'll just chat to you a little bit off air but thank you for calling in and have a nice day.
Paul:
I certainly will. I wish all your listeners a very merry Christmas and a very happy 2015.
Kelvin:
Yes it will be great I am sure you are going to get a few phone calls on Christmas day. Thank you Paul and I will talk to you in a moment. We've got a break coming up now and the other side of which we will have a little bit of yes One Direction.
Jingle:
Putting community spirit back into radio, Vectis Radio.