Why does the button need to be held down while talking/sending (like a walkie-talkie)?


#1

I was very excited to hear about the Relay as a possible option for my elderly mother in memory care. However, I just read a post on the Relay FB page that said the button needs to be held down while talking/sending (like a walkie-talkie). Is that truly the case? If so, then this won’t work for my mom. She would probably be able to remember to press a button before talking, but she won’t be able to remember to hold it down while talking and to release when listening.

I was under the assumption that the button triggered the mics on the unit, but figured it was a press-to-activate mechanism that would timeout if no incoming communication was occurring.


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#2

How would the relay unit know when to stop listening. Shouldn’t the time to listen should be pretty precise. There could be either a lot of dead air or people getting cut off mid sentence. Tough to balance.


#3

Sean, I don’t have an answer. I’m just pointing out an operational problem for people with memory, or even motor-skills issues. A hands-free mode of some kind would probably be needed. If something like that isn’t do-able, then there may simply be no solution for the situation I’m describing.


#4

While it would introduce other issues, I can imagine an optional “semi-VOX” mode that could be useful. Once triggered by a momentary button press, it would record until a pause of some pre-programmed or customizable duration occurred (say, 2 or 3 seconds), OR until a pre-programmed or customisable period of time has elapsed (say, 10 or 15 seconds).

Even more useful if wrist worn and it could be triggered by a flick of the wrist (does the hardware include an accelerometer?) -would be quite handy if one’s hands are full or otherwise occupied (driving, riding, biking).

Perhaps something to consider in a future revision - seems it souldn’t bee too difficult to implement in software. But I agree that the default should always remain push (and hold) to talk, and release when finished talking, as it’s a mode many people are already familiar with if they’ve ever used any sort of two-way radio or intercom, and it’s intuitive and simple to learn for anyone who hasn’t.

I’m not necessarily recommending it so much as I’m pointing out that it isn’t impossible - not even difficult - to add if there were enough interest.


#5

Hey @jriems, just wanted to add a little bit to this conversation as well. You do raise an interesting point and I know others have mentioned how Relay could assist with elder care…We wanted to design it like a walkie-talkie, thinking it’d be for mostly brief communications (checking in with your family & friends, quick updates, etc), and not necessarily be for longer conversations like you would have via phone. I understand this might make Relay a bit off from the initial solution you were hoping for, but we’re still developing as @homelessonwheels mentioned and if this becomes and issue for many, it could be a feature we revisit. Thanks for sharing this feedback, we definitely want to hear things like this :slight_smile: