Video Relay Service
Video relay service (VRS) allows persons whose first language is American Sign Language (ASL) to be able to communicate through telecommunications using their native language. By using video equipment, these persons are able to communicate with voice telephone users by "speaking" directly to specially trained operators via video. The video link allows the operator to view and interpret the party's signed conversation and the operator, in turn, speaks to the hearing party to confidentially relay the message being signed by the person using ASL. To use most VRS services, a person must have a computer or television with a video camera device and high speed Internet access. For specific requirements, contact the VRS provider of your choice. The FCC maintains a list of providers. The FCC currently has exclusive jurisdiction over VRS and VRS providers; see the FCC website for further details.
When using Video Relay Service, VRS users are not limited to their state's designated relay provider, but can choose any VRS provider without restrictions, provided the user has the proper equipment.
Internet Relay Service
Internet Relay provides Internet users the ability to communicate via the Relay service through web access, rather than with a TTY or telephone.
When using Internet Relay Service, TRS users are not limited to their state's designated relay provider, but can choose any Internet Relay provider without restrictions, provided the user has the proper equipment. The FCC maintains a list of TRS providers on its web site. The FCC currently has exclusive jurisdiction over Internet Relay service and Internet Relay providers; see the FCC website for further details.
back to Telephone Programs for Iowans who are Deaf, Hard of Hearing or have Difficulty Speaking