Frequently Asked Questions

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See also Captioning Videophone FAQ

Needs/Benefits

Why do we need FACE-TO-FACE contact?

Check they’re OK, by visual signs

  • Hair brushed? Maintaining good habits
  • Hair bouncy, not oily? Showering regularly
  • Hair messy? May have just woken up
  • Eyes wide open? Getting enough sleep
  • Glasses on? Not misplaced or forgotten
  • Clean face? Healthy washing hygiene
  • Make up / groomed? Self-esteem relates to mental health
  • Animated expression, nodding? Brain health
  • Flushed red cheeks? Overheating is dangerous
  • Facial hydration? Dehydration rapidly causes problems
  • Fresh clothes? Good hygiene, healthy temperature
  • Fingernails cut and clean? Healthy habits
  • Shaky hands? Parkinson’s check-up
  • Trembling lips? Paranoia, anxiety
  • Smiling mouth? Seems happy
  • Smiling eyes? REALLY HAPPY! — More information for caregivers here

Social isolation and loneliness

  • Face-to-face contact, 3 times per week, reduces depression risk — Learn more here
  • Contact MUST be face-to-face, to have impact
  • Social contact MUST be with family & friends, to make a difference

Health: social isolation is linked with

Hearing-Impaired: How do I share text to Videophone?

On any computer, iPad/tablet or mobile phone:

  1. Run Skype. You can get it from www.skype.com.
  2. Call the Videophone from Skype, or they can call you.
  3. During the call, tap/click the screen. Several icons will appear.
  4. Hit the Share Screen icon if shown; otherwise, hit the + icon first.
  5. If you have multiple screens, select the screen you want to share.
  6. Open Windows Notepad, Mac TextEdit, or any program that lets you enter text.
  7. On a computer: Maximize the window to take up the whole screen.
  8. Use a large font so it’s easy to read.
  9. As you type, your text will instantly appear on your friend’s Videophone.

The Videophone user does NOTHING. Just smile, read the text and talk!

Hearing-Impaired: How do I Voice-to-Text to Videophone?

The easiest way is to get a Konnekt Captioning Videophone or ask Konnekt to upgrade your regular Videophone.

The Videophone user does NOTHING. Just smile, read the text and talk!

Hearing-Impaired: How about sign-language translation?

If both of you are using sign language, simply read the tips on this page to optimize face-to-face call quality.

If the Videophone user would like to use sign language but the contact would like to talk, there are Video Relay services in some countries that interpret between sign language (using Skype) and spoken English (using a separate telephone connection to the Contact). Contact Us to ask whether we can help.

Physical disability: Features?

Videophone has many features that can help those with a disability. The Konnekt Disability Videophone product, which is based on Videophone but specifically designed for those with a disability, has additional unique hardware and software features to help those with a physical or mental impairment.

Physical disability: Accessories?

Videophone’s touchscreen is incredibly simple to use. If you need to find a table, a monitor arm or a pointer to suit a specific need, please see Videophone Accessories.

Physical disability: Features?

Purchase

What can I do with a Videophone I no longer need?
  • Sell it or give it to a relative or friend. We can re-personalize it.
  • Konnekt has a buy-back program. Contact us for details.
  • Windows can be installed. It makes a powerful touch PC. A keyboard & mouse can be added.
How can I tell my Mum about Videophone? She has no computer
Can’t I just use an iPad or tablet?

Yes. If you’re willing to learn a new operating system, device and apps. If your eyesight and hearing are great. If your hands are steady enough to reliably tap small icons; swipe, pinch-zoom and spin; work little on-screen keyboards; and connect fiddly chargers. If you have a patient IT Guy always on-hand.

A dozen Videophone advantages:

  1. Incredibly EASY to use — easier than opening a door.
  2. BIG buttons and LARGE screen — much larger than iPad.
  3. LOUD — twin front speakers. Hear it ring across many rooms.
  4. No pop-ups, ads or update requests. No logins, passwords, icons or apps.
  5. Backup numbers (home / office phones) called, in turn, if there’s no face-to-face answer.
  6. Auto-answer is selective: Just authorized callers, to check you’re OK when you don’t answer!
  7. Fully installed. Helps prevent misplacement, damage, and tripping over cables.
  8. One-touch KONNEKT button or call for help. No need for an IT Guy.
  9. Personalized. Just the family, friends and service providers you want.
  10. Changes: We do them for you, remotely, without a visit.
  11. Resistive touchscreen. Use it with a glove, bandage, prosthetic or any pointer.
  12. No scary requests, messages or calls from strangers.
  13. Videophone won’t be misplaced, left off charge, or used in a room with weak Wi-Fi. These are extremely common complaints of portable tablet video calling.
  14. We even help friends and family get onto Skype, and test and optimise with them, for a high-quality experience!
How can it save me money?
  1. Replace 90% of your telephone calls with calls from your Videophone:
    • Unlimited face-to-face calls, to anywhere in the world, including overseas friends
    • Unlimited calls to regular telephones — local and long-distance
    • Unlimited calls to mobile phones using Skype
    • We’ve seen phone bills as high as $100 per month!
  2. Reduce your phone service subscription to a “basic” plan.
    • One user changed from a $50 telephone plan to $24.90 per month
  3. Your friends and relatives can call you on your Videophone using Skype, from their mobile, iPad/tablet or computer.
    • They can reduce their home phone bills — particularly if they are overseas or interstate!
    • They can reduce their mobile phone bills — particularly relatives who call you often
  4. We can add call buttons that call your service providers, too.  Take advantage of seniors discounts, loyalty programs and “mates’ rates”.  Unlimited calls to your favourite:
    • Taxi service
    • Gardener, handyman, plumber, electrician and cleaner
    • Medical practitioners, massage, physio, nurse, podiatrist
    • Hairdresser, florist, gift shop, theatre, newsagent
    • Food delivery services
    • Gas, electricity, phone providers, vet, local council
  5. No calls from telemarketers or scammers/fraudsters.
    • Videophone blocks calls from unknown callers.
    • No Caller Line Identification is sent from Videophone to the other party.
    • We can help you register your regular phone with the Do Not Call register.
  6. For those in Aged Care (where there is an emergency nurse-call button):
    • Videophone can replace the need for a phone altogether.
    • Many Aged Care facilities provide free Internet with Wi-Fi to residents.
Does Videophone use much electricity?

No. Videophone uses far less electricity than a laptop.

  • Silent solid-state drive (SSD).
  • Low power-consumption Intel Mobile CPU.
  • No cooling fan, keyboard, mouse, track-pad, battery pack or optical drive.
  • Screen-saver can completely power-off LCD screen when not in use.
  • Electricity costs only a few cents per day!

Setup & Features

Can my Videophone volume be increased?

We can change the volume for you, without needing to visit. We can optimize the volume for a noisy or quiet room. We can also increase or decrease the ringing volume, or use a more intense ringing sound. See Videophone Preferences or simply Contact Us.

Can I change the number of Call Buttons or Call Button Layout

We can change the number of Call Buttons for you without the need to visit, and arrange them in rows and columns just the way you want. For example, you might need to add or remove a button for one of your friends, or you might like to put your favourite contacts on the top row. See Videophone Preferences or simply Contact Us.

How do I add a Call Button for a new contact?

Simply Contact Us with your contact’s name, email address, phone numbers, and (if they have one) their Skype Name or Microsoft Account details. We’ll do the rest.

If your contact hasn’t used Skype or needs some help, send them to https://www.konnekt.com.au/get-skype/, or let us send them a getting started email.

If you need to add or change several contacts, you might like to use the form at the end of our Videophone Preferences page.

Can I make Call Buttons easier to read?

We can increase the size of the text within the buttons for you. We can also customize the font (typeface) and colour scheme. You can even have contact names in another language, such as Simplified Chinese. Using short contact names, such as “Bart” instead of “Bartholomew”, let us increase the text size further. See Videophone Preferences or simply Contact Us.

Can I avoid talking to voicemail or an answering machine?

Konnekt can customize each Call Button to try to call your contact on up to five different numbers or Skype Names, in sequence. For example, if Bill has a home phone, a work phone and a Skype Name, we can setup a “Bill” button to first try Bill on Skype, then ring his work phone number and, if he doesn’t answer his work number within (say) 25 seconds, to lastly try Bill’s home phone number. This prevents your call from being answered by Bill’s work voicemail or answering machine. To change the way a button works or add / remove a button, see Videophone Preferences or simply Contact Us.

What if someone I call now has a different number?

We can add, remove or change a phone number or Skype Name of any of your contacts for you, without the need to visit. See Videophone Preferences or simply Contact Us.

How can I block unwanted calls?

We can set up your Videophone so it only allows incoming calls from the contacts that you nominate. This helps prevent unwanted calls and telemarketing. It also helps prevent malicious and fraudulent calls. If you have a contact that you want to be able to call but whom you don’t want to be able to call you – for example, a merry cousin who always seems to call at 10pm to ask for something – we can set that up for you. Conversely, if you want to remove your cousin’s Call Button but allow your cousin to reach you, we can do that too. See Videophone Preferences or simply Contact Us.

UPDATE: We can now also setup your Videophone to allow incoming calls from any caller. This mode can be useful during the first couple of weeks, while the family is still organizing their Skype accounts. It’s also useful if you’ve asked us to give your Videophone a regular telephone number, and you want anybody to be able to call Videophone from any telephone number.

How do I clean the screen without inadvertently making a call?

From time to time, the screen might need a wipe to remove finger print marks or dust. To prevent Videophone from making calls while you clean the screen:

  1. Find a damp or dry lint-free cloth. No liquids, no cleaning fluids, no chemicals.
  2. Touch the big Clean button. If unavailable, turn the power off.
  3. Wipe the screen in large circles. Do not press too hard!
  4. If you need to clean some more, repeat this procedure.
How do I share photos to Videophone?

On any computer, iPad/tablet or mobile phone:

  1. Run Skype. You can get it from www.skype.com.
  2. Call the Videophone from Skype, or they can call you.
  3. During the call, tap/click the screen. Several icons will appear.
  4. Hit the Share Screen icon if shown; otherwise, hit the + icon first.
  5. If you have multiple screens, select the screen you want to share.
  6. Display the photos on your own device using any photo viewer, or from your Social Media.
  7. For best results, the photo should take up the whole screen. Zoom in to show detail.

The Videophone user does NOTHING. Just smile, talk about the photos and enjoy the show!

How can my contacts answer on a mobile phone without running the Skype app?

hey can forward incoming Skype calls to their mobile phone number:

  • Visit skype.com on any browser (or, from within the new Skype app) login and go to Account settings
  • Add a little Skype credit or a subscription that includes calls to mobiles
  • Under Manage features, click on and enable Call forwarding, enter the mobile number and Confirm/Save
  • Forwarded incoming calls use a little Skype credit or minutes, unless an unlimited subscription is used.

Alternatively, they can call-forward their home or office phone (if not answered) to their mobile:

  • Contact your phone service provider to learn how.
How do Backup Numbers work?

When you touch a Call Button, your Videophone will first call your Contact face-to-face (unless your Contact has no Skype Name or unless you’ve asked us to set things up differently).

If your Contact doesn’t answer on Skype, then after a period of time, your Videophone will call each Backup Number in turn. A Backup Number is usually a home or office landline phone number.

  • No need to remember any phone numbers.
  • A single touch of a Call Button will generally reach your Contact, no matter where they are.

Watch our Backup Numbers video to see how they work.

You can manage each Contact’s Skype Name and Backup Numbers using our Videophone Preferences form or simply Contact Us.

Is is private?

Yes. Video and sound are encrypted in both directions. Only your contacts can call you. You control who is authorized to add or change your contacts. The camera and microphone are only activated during a call.

See also Konnekt’s privacy policy.

Service/Support

How do I contact Konnekt?

You can contact Konnekt by touching the big Konnekt button on your Videophone screen, calling our phone or Skype Name, writing a letter to our postal address or sending us an email by completing the Contact Us form on our web site. You can find our phone numbers, Skype ID and postal address here.

Does Konnekt really do all changes for me?

Yes! “CHANGES” are part of our service, and helps makes us unique.

Practically everything about the Videophone can be changed, by us, remotely. Nobody needs to visit.

Our customers love this service! As they obtain the contact details of other family members and friends, they simply forward those details to us, and we do the rest.

If the user’s hearing deteriorates or they move into a smaller home, we can change the volume and, separately, the ringing volume.

To request a change: Simply contact us by email, call us from any phone or via Skype, or press Videophone’s big Konnekt button. Alternatively, use our Videophone preferences form.

How do my contacts get onto Skype?

end your contacts to https://www.konnekt.com.au/get-skype/ for a simple guide, or simply Contact Us to send them a getting started email. All our customers, worldwide, get a personalized service that includes helping friends and family get going. This helps ensure a wonderful experience overall, and excellent quality for all your video calls.

Can you help me with the internet?

es.

Konnekt can help you with the best Internet deals, and help you select and test your Internet service, no matter where you are in the world.

  • Any Internet: Any type of Internet is OK. ADSL, VDSL, Cable/HFC, Optical, 3G/4G/5G mobile (cellular) Internet.
  • Plans: Internet is usually cheaper on a 12-month or 24-month contract, but go for a month-by-month deal if you’re on a trial or renting.
  • Wi-Fi or wired: Videophone can connect to the modem/router via Wi-Fi (802.11 g/n/ac, 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) or via a regular LAN cable.
  • Speeds: We recommend at least 2.0/0.7 Mbps (Megabits per second) reliable downlink/uplink speed. Preferably 3.0/1.0 Mbps. Test at www.speedtest.net.
  • For lip reading: At least 2.0/1.5 Mbps. Preferably 3.0/2.0 Mbps. Use wired LAN unless Videophone is in the same room as the Wi-Fi modem/router.
  • Data: If you’re using fixed Internet, we recommend at least 50 GB (GigaBytes) of data per month. About 85-90% of customers use less than 5 GB a month, so if you’re on mobile (cellular) Internet, start with a 4-5 GB pre-paid service and monitor usage. If you’re likely to use video calling for over two hours per day, every day, we recommend 10-15 GB per month.
  • Excess data: If you’re using mobile (cellular) Internet, choose a deal that’s pre-paid, or a plan in which the speed is throttled after the monthly data allowance is used up. Try to avoid plans that have “overage” (excess data) charges — we’ve heard horror stories of people being charged ten times their usual monthly plan fee due to going over their “cap”. If in doubt, ask us.
  • Shared: If Internet is shared: A plan with unlimited data is recommended. If speeds in your area are slow, pause other usage during calls.
  • Wi-Fi: You’ll need to know the Wi-Fi password, and have a strong Wi-Fi singal at the desired Videophone location.
    A Wi-Fi extender may be needed if the modem/router is not in the same room. We can help — many Wi-Fi extenders are very unreliable but we’ve found a model that works.
    Better still, use a LAN cable.
  • Award-winning Wi-Fi router : We can recommend or supply a highly reliable modem-router, set up and ready to go, optimized for 2-way video.
  • One support number: Just call us, email us or use online chat for all Videophone and IT / Internet support.
Does Konnekt really provide worldwide I.T support?

Konnekt provides I.T. support for the user and even for family & friends. It’s helps make us unique.

This extends even to non-Konnekt equipment and services, such as third-party Internet and modems/routers. The Konnekt team has an incredible amount of experience. We’ve seen it all. We have many tools and tricks to help solve the most difficult issues with Wi-Fi, Internet, modems/routers and extenders. And we have our own methods to make the service robust and reliable.

Most of our customers live more than 20 minutes away from the user. Many are interstate or overseas. And all of them (especially the customers who work in I.T. themselves) do NOT want to support a remote gadget! Instead, they want to spend their time enjoying high-quality video and audio conversation.

How is Videophone updated?

Videophone software is updated automatically overnight to fix any defects* and to make new features available.

There are no pop-ups, no buttons, no settings. Updates need absolutely no user intervention.

Best of all: No matter how the video calling apps might change their look-and-feel on other devices, Videophone keeps its incredibly easy user interface.

For those with disabilities who need special options, such as accessibility buttons or lamps that go on when there’s an incoming call, we can help you get all that going too.

Are calls to regular telephones really unlimited?

Yes. Videophone comes with unlimited calls to regular landline telephones in one country. No surprises.

If you have special requirements (such as family spread over multiple countries) we can almost always help you with that, too.

Videophone can also make and receive face-to-face calls to any device that runs Skype, worldwide, with the exception of only a few countries where it is blocked or a VPN service is required. So as long as your family member can run the Skype app on their mobile phone, they can make and receive calls to/from Videophone.

Why does Konnekt use Skype?

Konnekt selected Skype after trying over 20 different video calling systems / platforms / apps.

  • Longevity. Skype has been going the longest (by far) out of any of the popular video calling systems.
  • Investment. Microsoft recently redeveloped the Skype apps, upgraded the server infrastructure, integrated Skype into its other products and continues to invest heavily in Skype’s success.
  • Support. Skype support is international and includes a Forum manned by employees and frequented by expert advocates.
  • Cross-platformSkype apps are available for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS (iPad tablets and iPhones), Android (tablets and mobile phones) and XBox. Skype also runs in many computer browsers without the need for an app.
  • International. Skype works in practically every corner of the world. In only a few countries, it is blocked or requires a VPN.
  • Availability. Skype rarely misses a beat. With one click, you can easily find out Skype status.
  • Re-connection. When your Internet comes back after a short (5-30 second) problem, Skype automatically reconnects.
  • Low data usageSkype Lite for Android is available for family members with older mobile phones, or in countries where Internet is slow or data is expensive.
  • Group calls. Group video calls, audio calls, or group calls with a mix of Skype and telephone destinations.
  • Features. Screen sharing. Calls to regular phone numbers in over 60 countries. Skype Numbers. Skype was one of few platforms that ticked all our boxes.
  • Firewall penetration. Skype works in almost every environment we have encountered, including most corporations such as banks.
  • Privacy. Skype calls are encrypted.
  • Call quality. Skype makes the most of available Internet bandwidth, adjusting continually. Need better quality? See our guide on optimizing video call quality.

Disclaimer: Konnekt does not represent Microsoft or Skype.

What can my contacts do to improve face-to-face quality?

As part of our service, we can help you and each of your contacts (family & friends) optimize their video call experience.

In the meantime, here are several ideas to help your Videophone contact:

Reliable Internet

  • Upstream speed is critical! Ask Konnekt for Annex M for up to 60-100% ADSL2+ boost.
  • Pause or reduce other Internet usage.
  • Use a wired LAN or Power-line Communication connection, or move close to the Wi-Fi router.
  • If on mobile Internet, go outdoors to a place with 3 or more “bars” of signal. Use a newer 4G device.
  • Visit www.speedtest.net. You need 2.0/0.6 Mbps, preferably 3.0/1.0 Mbps reliable downlink/uplink speed.

Fast, steady device

  • Use a newer computer, tablet or mobile.
  • Restart, or close other apps.
  • Older laptops: Get a USB webcam / microphone.
  • Mobiles/tablets: Use landscape mode and a stand.

Picture and sound

  • Brightly light faces. No background movement/light. Keep still. No camera shake.
  • Wear headphones, earphones or a headset.
  • Avoid wind noise, traffic, music and TV.
  • Adjust sound levels with a Test call.
  • If in the car or in a poor signal area, turn off the camera.
  • Mobiles: Tap screen, tap Camera icon to send video.
  • iPhone: Tap screen, tap Speaker icon for Speaker mode.

Need more? See our simple but thorough step-by-step guide on optimising  Skype call quality.

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