In the coming weeks, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will be releasing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service (IP CTS). This means the FCC is writing rules that everyone will have an opportunity to weigh in on regarding captioned telephone service that relies on the internet. Whether you have a captioned phone on your kitchen table or at your desk at work, or an IP CTS captioning app on your smartphone, you have a stake in what the FCC will be saying about how you are able to receive and use this service.
According to the FCC, Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) is a telephone service that allows persons with hearing or speech disabilities to place and receive telephone calls. TRS is available in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. territories for local and/or long distance calls. TRS providers – generally telephone companies – are compensated for the costs of providing TRS from either a state or a federal fund. There is no cost to the TRS user.
To learn more about TRS, visit the FCC’s website: www.fcc.gov
Sprint has decided to decommission its Wireless CapTel by Sprint app service by December 7, 2015. Sprint provided formal notice to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on November 6, 2015.
Helen Keller National Center and The American Association of the Deaf-Blind Seek Immediate Action to Prevent Service Disruption on November 14th That Threatens Ability of People Who Are Deaf-Blind to Make Phone Calls
Two-Pronged Effort Needed to Delay Cessation of IP Relay Service by Purple Communications; and for Sprint to Improve Accessibility and Function of IP Relay Service
On August 26, 2013, the Commission adopted the Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service (IP CTS) Reform Order, adopting, among other things, new registration and certification requirements for IP CTS users. For more information about the IP CTS Reform Order, please see the previous AccessInfo announcement that we posted about the Order: http://transition.fcc.gov/cgb/dro/AccessInfo/2013-09-10.pdf
On May 13, 2014, the FCC’s Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau released a Public Notice granting conditional certification to Miracom USA to provide Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service (IP CTS), a form of telecommunications relay services (TRS) that is eligible for compensation from the Interstate TRS Fund. Miracom stated in its application for certification that it plans to offer IP CTS under a brand name, InnoCaption, which is designed for registered users to place and receive IP CTS calls with their mobile devices.
HLAA was invited to contribute to a panel discussing the future of IP-based Relay Services, by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The FCC is developing and funding interagency research on IP-based technologies. The workshop was convened to gather information on the kinds of research that is needed to improve TRS. The FCC is partnering with the National Institute on Aging for this grant.
HLAA Files a Friend of the Court Brief Supporting Equal Access to Captioned Telephones
HLAA, TDI, and other consumer organizations filed a Petition for Stay on September 30, 2013. Our Petition requests the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) put a hold on implementation of one section of their Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Services (IP CTS) Order that requires all users to pay a minimum of $75 for the captioned telephones. See our Petition.