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JUNIPERunltd’s Guide to Connecting During the Holidays

What is the best way to spend time with your family and friends over the holidays, even though you may be far apart?

_BLOG TECHNIQUE / holiday connections

JUNIPER takes a look at some of the best ways to make it feel like you really are together this holiday season.

FOR SPENDING TIME ONE ON ONE

FaceTime, an app from Apple, is good for spending time one on one. It can be used on an iPhone or an iPad and has both video and audio features. It is free for iPhone, iPad and Mac, works internationally, and is available in many languages. What about accessibility? Apple says, “FaceTime lets you communicate visually, whether you use sign language, gestures, or facial expressions”.

Facebook Messenger is another option, as its video call feature is good for one-to-one interactions - you do need to have a Facebook account, though. It’s free and can be used internationally. Facebook has their own page dedicated to accessibility.

FOR LARGER GROUPS

Zoom is great for large groups, and is free for up to 100 people, with a 40-minute limit. But there are unlimited one-to-one meetings. It can be used internationally. Zoom has its own accessibility team. According to their website, “The accessibility team tests with screen readers and with keyboard-only, working in tandem with developers to ensure that all releases are compatible with as many assistive technologies as possible”.

Google Meet is another option for a larger group. It’s free, and you just need a Google account to use it. You can have up to 100 participants, with a time limit of 60 minutes per meeting. Is it accessible? Google says on their website, “Users with disabilities can participate in Google Meet video meetings using accessibility features in Meet, Chrome Browser, and Google meeting room hardware”. These features include live captions, screen readers and magnifiers, keyboard shortcuts, and Google meeting room hardware.

Skype, free for a group of up to 50 people, has audio and video options. It can be used internationally, and you can call someone who doesn’t have Skype for a fee. Accessible features include a screen reader, high-contrast settings, and a magnifier.

FOR SENIORS

Any of the above options will work for seniors. There is also Konnekt, a videophone service designed specifically for seniors, for a fee, and Facebook’s Portal, which works with Alexa, and is an actual device available to purchase, great for one on one calls.

Please share your adventures with us at share@juniperunltd.com
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