Tuesday 29 November 2011

The hear-changing iPad

Ah what a lovely weekend I had at home with the Rents, doing a spot of Christmas shopping, catching up and giving them iLessons, which were necessary after they became the proud owners of an iPhone and iPad!

It all started when Pa decided he wanted an upgrade on his Nokia, so we popped into their local O2 store.

There, he chose a free iPhone 3GS with 300 minutes, unlimited texts and 100mb data for just £18.50 a month.

While the data is not much, the Rents live in the middle of nowhere – luckily with WiFi – so the chances of him actually being able to get reception enough to use any data when out and about is highly unlikely. Plus, if you go over your data allowance with O2, all that simply happens is they slow it down.

Then there was Ma, who's been hankering after an iPad since she could say iPad. But then came the hunt for the one she wanted in white.

Eventually we tracked one down, and reserved it via my iPhone, in Argos and headed there to pick it up.

Ma completely exhausted from all this running around promptly fell asleep on the sofa after arriving home, so I took the iPad, installed the new iTunes on their computer and set it all up for her so when she woke up, she had a fully functioning iPad, complete with a home screen link to this very blog.

But this wasn't really what Ma wanted the iPad for...

Regular readers will know my lovely Ma is going deaf and this has been incredibly hard for her, especially when it comes to keeping in contact with Big Bro in Clogland.

But then on Sunday morning her iPad pinged as she was reading the news on it in bed.

It was FaceTime, and there on the screen was Big Bro and MicroClog wanting to say hello.

Ma was ecstatic at being able to chat to them with such ease.

Then, that evening, the iPad went off again and this time it was MiniClog wanting to say goodnight to Ma.

Then, two minutes later she was Skyping French Cousin 3 and yakking away to him.

When Pa bought Ma this iPad as an early Christmas present, I don't think he realised that what he was actually doing was giving her back a part of her life her deafness had taken away.

The iPad means she can have easy and regular contact with Big Bro and his family again without the struggle of wondering what's being said.

By just having that little bit of a visual clue to help her decipher the words, Ma can hear so much more than if she was on the phone alone. And even better still? It's free.

So what about me? Has this tempted me to get internet at home and buy an iPad?

Honestly? Yes.

Although I would need people to speak quite slowly on Skype or FaceTime so that the lips synced with the voice and I could follow the conversation.

What it has give me though is confidence for the future. Confidence that this way of communicating is only going to get better. That video calls will be the norm and that soon the internet will be so fast, there will be no lipreading delay.

The future is there if you're willing to spend a little bit of extra money.

Thank goodness for MasterCard!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i'm still having fun!

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