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The Benefits of a Personal PA System

By | Business, Churches, Dining, Education, Fashion, Fitness Centers, Hearing Assistance, Music, Restaurants, Sports Bars, streaming, Tour Guides, Waiting Rooms | No Comments

Whether you’re a factory manager, a tour guide, a minister or a sports bar manager, you understand the importance of keeping your people happy. Information is today’s currency, and there is so much of it, coming so quickly, that being able to convey and understand critical information is of top importance.

Communication is essential, whether between your business and employees, or your clientele. This can mean different things depending on your business; saving time, eliminating distractions or simply providing an impeccable experience. Whatever your goals are, an audio streaming solution could help you get there faster.

Have you ever presented at a business conference in a cavernous lecture hall or noisy convention center? How much time is spent trying to get the microphone or AV system working and repeating Q&A responses so that people in every corner of the room can hear? What if you could take advantage of smart phone technology, and everyone could stream audio from your presentation in real-time? You wouldn’t be competing with conversation in the back of the room, noise from the hall, or general din of a busy convention center. Your presentation just became more productive and efficient.

Maybe you’re expanding your business and need to train employees at your new location, but last-minute installation and finishing are still going on. If you used a personal PA system with built in wifi, your new team could follow you around the store, warehouse, or office without worrying about the distraction or disruption of the other work going on. Your employees will be trained in less time, saving you money.

Construction sites and factory floors are notoriously loud. Bring in new people or guide investors around the site and have a productive conversation despite all that’s going on. You will know they aren’t missing any of the important points.

Maybe you work with the public – education, fitness instruction, giving tours at a local museum or botanical garden, auctioneering, hosting book club at the library, guiding field trips through a nature preserve or historical site. Streaming your instruction with a wireless audio guide system will give your students and clients a better, deeper experience without interrupting or distracting others, and maybe even save your voice.

Does your church serve the hearing impaired? Let them listen in real-time with personal PA technology. Do you have a cry room or nursery separate from the sanctuary? Mothers and caretakers can keep up on the sermon without waking the babies. You can tend your flock in a way that meets their needs.

Additionally, you’re not limited to streaming your own voice. Maybe your business or agency would benefit from streaming music, or pertinent content. Anxious patients in the waiting room? They can stream soothing music. Bored citizens waiting for their number at the DMV? Offer audio from TVs mounted throughout the room, or a review of traffic laws while they wait.

Perhaps you want to provide some of the benefits of music to your employees, without allowing a free-for-all when it comes to internet streaming. This technology can offer a variety of options, pre-selected by you or your management team.

If this is something that would help your business increase productivity and efficiency, or create happier, more satisfied clients, Fetch Express is one option to consider. Contact us at AudioFetch for more information.

AudioFetch Blog Header - Does Your Church Need Hearing Assistive System?

Is Audio Streaming Right for Your House of Worship?

By | Churches, Hearing Assistance, streaming, Uncategorized | No Comments

A house of worship should be a place that brings people from all walks of life together for fellowship. With young and old, bilingual speakers and various disabilities all coming together in one space, a house of worship needs solutions to help meet its congregation’s audio needs. It used to be that adding assistive listening devices for churches wasn’t worth the trouble; programming changes and ongoing upkeep made it an expensive and burdensome addition. But modern solutions are able to eliminate all of that and leverage existing technology that works for everyone.

Here are a few of the reasons why a hearing assistive system could be a God-send for your house of worship:

Replaces Outdated Equipment

With a solution that transmits to users’ smartphones, you no longer need to provide all of the hardware to make it work. In the past, the place of worship was responsible for the upkeep and distribution of the end-user components. Now you can simply plug in the portable pa system, connect to existing WiFi or use the integrated WiFi, and congregants can instantly use their smartphones or tablets to access the wireless hearing assistive services without additional expense to your church.

More Hygienic Solution

Since the users have their own personal device–smartphones or tablets–you no longer have to collect, clean the equipment and replace dead batteries. Plus, units won’t fail and require replacement because of ordinary wear and tear. This saves time and money which could be put to better uses in the community.

Scales as You Need

Since everyone uses their own device, the house of worship won’t need to worry about not having enough equipment to meet the needs of the attendees. Each person uses his or her own phone or tablet, which permits the system to support a handful or a full house without issue.

No longer will you have to qualify a user as a means of rationing equipment, and members don’t have to worry about the stigma of using a bulky hearing assitve device. Everyone can choose to use the system or not, discreetly and at their leisure. And if there are members who want to use the product, but don’t have access to a cell phone, you can always suggest that other members donate their old phones for this purpose.

Expand the Service Without Expensive Infrastructure

With an audio streaming solution, you can expand to many different locations, such as overflow areas or nurseries, without expensive system add-ons. This ensures that members can be a part of the service, no matter what they are called to do within the house of worship. It can also serve as both a hearing assistive product and an audio distribution system, allowing use of areas in conjunction with the central worship area that provide even more space for growth.

With a wireless hearing device, you can get a simple, affordable audio streaming solution that helps members with hearing disabilities, provides language translation services and connects members in other areas of the building so that all can enjoy the service. Your congregation will never miss the good word!

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The Top 3 Blogs of 2017

By | Food for thought, General, Hearing Assistance, streaming | No Comments

We had an incredible year in 2017! We shared a lot of information about audio solutions for all types of businesses, as well as innovative ideas and tips for using audio to benefit your business and your community. However, the below three blogs were our most read during 2017. Take another look at these helpful posts, perhaps you might read something you missed.

Build Community with an Outdoor Movie Screening

Looking for a perfect way to bring your community together in an entertaining and unique event? We have a solution to help you make it happen.

How Audio Streaming Works

Local audio streaming over WiFi is an effective way to reach your patrons quickly, easily and often very personally. Learn how audio streaming works.

A Better Solution to Hearing Loops

Considering installing a hearing loop system in your building? Wireless audio streaming may be a better solution for you and your guests. 

Stay tuned for more great content in 2018 and let us know on our Facebook page if there are any topics you’d like us to cover. As always, if you have any questions about our audio streaming solutions, please contact us.

Happy new year from all of us at AudioFetch!

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New Richmond Area Centre Installs AudioFetch

By | AudioFetch News, Fitness Centers, streaming | No Comments

We hold a very high standard for customer service. While our products are easy to install, sometimes our clients still need some extra support to help with unrelated issues like wifi troubleshooting – and we are there for them! Our install at the New Richmond Area Centre was no exception.  With the slogan, “Health, Fitness and Fun for all ages,” the New Richmond Area Centre offers a variety of programming options for kids, families, teens and adults. With over 6000 members, AudioFetch was the perfect audio streaming solution for this dynamic community Centre, bustling with activity and audio tastes.

We sat down with Kayla Bertram, Workplace Wellness Manager at the New Richmond Area Centre to talk about the Centre’s experience with AudioFetch:

AudioFetch: What is the best part about being able to stream audio through the Centre? How does it benefit your team and your members?

Kayla Bertram: Members no longer have to rely on having a CardioVision attached to their machine and hoping that it works. There was a lot of confusion in our facility over the fact that you had to be moving the machine for the CardioVision to turn on  – with AudioFetch we no longer have to worry about adjusting the antennas to get the channels to come in clearly – they are all crystal clear and available right on the user’s device. For my team this means no more messing with CardioVisions to get them to work for members, and for members it means they will be able to listen to the TV (and hear it clearly) no matter which machine they choose.

AF: What has been the reception with AudioFetch at the Centre?

KB: Mostly it’s nice for me because I have less people complaining about the old system not working, and more [members] who are perfectly content with AudioFetch and no longer complain about the old system. Once a [member] has downloaded and successfully used AudioFetch – they seem content.

AF: What was your experience working with AudioFetch and installing the system? Can you briefly explain the WiFi issues and how AudioFetch helped to resolve them?

KB: I’m not a super nerd when it comes to technology, but I’d like to consider myself at least somewhat technologically inclined. So for me, set up was super simple. Pretty much plug and go. We did have some issues in the beginning getting AudioFetch to connect to our wifi and having to reset the system every single day. It was definitely a process to get it figured out, however Albert and Tim were INCREDIBLY helpful. These guys stand behind this product 100% and will do anything to help you get the problem fixed. I honestly cannot thank them enough for helping me through the process and getting everything to work like it should. We do not have an IT person at our facility so it was challenging for me to figure this out alone and Tim and Albert were able to help me get it up and running.

AudioFetch has solutions that are right for many different businesses. If you’d like to learn more about how we could help improve your customer and team experience, contact us.

How Audio Streaming Works

By | streaming | No Comments

We’ve all been there. You’re out at your favorite restaurant and whether it’s the big game or some breaking news, you want to tune in and hear the experience. This can be difficult with all the noise in a busy establishment. Streaming local audio over wifi directly solves this issue by allowing your patrons to easily connect their personal devices to the source. Patrons have their choice of volume, channel, and can easily catch all the action at their choosing.

How Audio Streaming Works

Streaming is basically taking an audio or video source and broadcasting it out. The content must be sampled then encoded. In the case of streaming local audio over WiFi, the stream is encoded into WiFi packets.

How AudioFetch Streaming Works

The AudioFetch platform is a designed specifically for very fast sampling and encoding of audio to be distributed over WiFi networks.  To this end, there is a dedicated audio processor for each audio source.  The For business owners, this well thought out design results in a a simple “plug-and-play” process!

Plug: First, you connect the audio source to the AudioFetch system you’re using. It could be a television, satellite, cable or IPTV input if using the traditional multiple-channel AudioFetch system, or a microphone if using the portable, single-channel FetchExpress. Note that AudioFetch provides 3 different audio connection issues to ensure your sources connect today and in the future.  Next, you connect the AudioFetch system to the wireless internet router via the Ethernet jack.

And Play: Once connected to both the source and the WiFi, the AudioFetch system automatically broadcasts audio from the source through the local WiFi network.

Users that have downloaded the free AudioFetch app and are connected to the local WiFi simply launch the  App and the audio automatically is streamed on their smartphone or tablet.

How AudioFetch Audio Streaming Over WiFi Works

Learn more about how AudioFetch works.

Local audio streaming is an extremely effective way to reach your patrons quickly, easily and often very personally. They’ll be happy that they can choose what they want to hear and view.  THose that don’t want to hear are grateful for the lack of noise pollution. For more information on how AudioFetch can work for you, contact us today.

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The Best Audio Streaming System For Your Business

By | Business, Churches, General, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

Has your company ever had an all-hands meeting where half the team had to listen from the hallway because it was too crowded in the boardroom? How about the last time you were in a packed bar trying to watch a game with 60 TVs playing other games? Have you ever had to sit in the back of church and miss the whole sermon? These are all hearing and communication challenges that a business PA system could easily solve. Installing a PA system can help businesses to regulate exactly the audio they want to provide to their staff or customers, simply using wifi to stream to their smartphones or tablets.

What type of businesses can benefit from streaming audio over wifi?

Businesses of all types and sizes can take advantage of wireless audio streaming. If you have employees, customers, audiences and/or guests that need to hear better or listen to music while working, a business PA system is a great addition. Here are just a few of the business types that can benefit:

Warehouses – Allow factory workers to listen to preselected audio options, broadcast important announcements and eliminate other distractions.

Office – Allow staff to listen to and curate audio options, and reduce distractions throughout the entire building.

Houses of Worship – Allow members to hear the sermon, regardless of where they are in the building, assist hearing-impaired members and provide translation services.

Theaters – Give guests an extra boost to hear audio regardless of where they are in the theater, as well as provide translation and hearing assistive services.

Event Centers – Allow guests to better hear audio for various types of events–lecture, speaker panel, musician, comedian, film, etc.–and provide translation services.

Community Centers – Allow guests to better hear audio for various community events, including speakers, educational/instructional classes, indoor or outdoor movie screenings, etc., and provide translation services.

How do businesses benefit from streaming audio over wifi?

Wireless audio streaming can provide numerous benefits for businesses to help increase customer and employee satisfaction, improve communication and enhance productivity.

Efficient Communication

You can create a single channel that broadcasts relevant messages, such as current promotions or specials, new menu items, upcoming events happening at your business, holiday hours and closures, etc. You can also use the app to alert guests of these messages by including links or PDFs in the drop down menu.  

Increase Revenue

If you are using a personal PA system at your venue, such as a house of worship or a concert hall, you can market the space as having hearing assistive technology that can amplify the sound for any patron in need. This can be a great marketing asset to broaden awareness of your venue and increase ticket sales or donations.

Encourage Diversity

Providing services and technology for diverse audiences can benefit both employees and customers. For example, your business could be able to provide real-time translation services to ensure that everyone is hearing the same message at the same time in their native language. Churches and community centers are great candidates for providing real-time translation services, but any public venue is likely to have an audience that would find this useful.  

Another great example is it can help the hearing impaired. One in eight people in the United States aged 12 years or older has hearing loss in both ears, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD). Considering that that’s 13% of the U.S. population, it’s highly likely that your staff and guests have some type of hearing loss or impairment, and would benefit from hearing assistive devices. A PA system that uses wifi to stream local audio to smartphones provides these services, without requiring your staff or guests to own new devices or requiring your business to install a comprehensive sound system.

The ability to help your employees and consumers hear better, without distractions or distracting others, can enhance the environment in your business, increase productivity, communication, and improve your business’s bottom line. If you’re ready to help your employees and guests hear better, contact us to get started with your wireless audio streaming and business PA system.

 

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Build Community with an Outdoor Movie Screening

By | General, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

Cooler, cozier evenings are just around the corner, but that doesn’t mean an end to all outdoor activities. Outdoor movie events have become quite popular in the last few years and are an excellent way to build community in your organization or neighborhood. With advances in projection and audio technology, they are easier to produce than ever.

Practically any type of organization or business can host an outdoor movie night. Following are some ideas for how you can host outdoor movies in your community and the benefits they can bring:

Church or Youth Groups

An outdoor movie screening can provide community outreach, fellowship and recreation for your members, regardless of their age. Select family-friendly movies that help to spread your organization’s message.

Public Libraries

Create educational or recreational events targeting teens and families to connect the community and bring folks to the library. Select movie adaptations of favorite novels, like Harry Potter films, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Wizard of Oz, Little Women, Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory, The Hunger Games films or Where the Wild Things Are.

Professional Organizations

Use outdoor movie screenings as a way to enrich your local community, and bring together like-minded individuals to make connections.

Agri-Tourism

Host an outdoor movie at your farm’s pumpkin patch, or after the corn maze. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is a fitting title, but there are near innumerable movies that pair well with the autumn season.

Parks and Recreation

Offer regular community gatherings at parks and outdoor spaces around your town. Provide lawn games or frisbee golf, and consider hiring musical acts to bring in a bigger crowd. You can make the event free or charge a small fee for an additional revenue opportunity.

Businesses

Host the movie night as a customer- or employee-appreciation event. Bring a few vendors (e.g., popcorn, ice cream, beverages) to make the evening complete.

Neighborhood Groups

There’s no better way to get to know your neighbors than by cozying up in front of a movie, and laughing or gasping together!

Charities & Civic Organizations

Host a movie night to raise awareness for your cause. Select a film that is relevant to your organization, and bring in vendors and other entertainment. For example, if you’re screening a documentary related to your cause, invite the director for a post-screening Q&A.

Schools & Clubs

An outdoor movie night can be an excellent fundraising opportunity. Select a popular movie that appeals to a broad range of people, get sponsors to donate snacks and drinks, and ask for a small donation at the entrance.

Sports Teams

Another effective way to raise funds, this time for local community or school sports team. You could also simply have the screening  be an end-of-season celebration for players, parents and fans.

Arts Councils

Run the outdoor movie screening in conjunction with your festival schedule or use it as an outreach method for children’s art.

Local Talent

Pair an outdoor movie with a live music ensemble, dance troupe or vaudeville act! A swing dancing team would make a great opener for Dirty Dancing. An 80s cover band would be perfect before The Breakfast Club. A dancing dog act would pair nicely with The Secret Life of Pets. Get creative and tap into your local talent pool.

With the earlier sunsets of autumn, it’s the perfect time to host an outdoor movie evening. All you need is a white sheet or convenient wall (a white delivery truck would work, too), a projector, assistive hearing technology (especially if you don’t want to monitor your area for noise pollution or obtain a sound permit), and a favorite movie!

Guests can bring their own blankets and chairs–even their comfy pickup truck bed, if the venue permits! Consider selling or giving away popcorn as an added treat. It’s a perfect way to bring your community together in an entertaining and unique fall gathering.

When you’re ready to make your outdoor movie the best-heard event of its kind, without disturbing the nearby neighbors, contact us.

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4 Non-Traditional Donation Type for Churches

By | Churches, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

Churches and other houses of worship thrive on the generous offerings made by their members. But monetary giving during services is just one way that members can support their church. There are several others methods for giving and items that churches need to operate.

If you’re in need other types of donations or would like to expand the ways you accept donations, consider trying one (or all) of these unique and modern donation methods.

1. Mobile or Online Donations

EasyTithe

Image Source: easyTithe

Mobile or online tithing allows your members to give in easy and convenient ways, ways that fit into their busy lives. With software like easyTithe or EZekiel, members can donate at the preferred time and using their preferred payment method, and can even set up recurring donations, all without requiring them to have cash on hand during services.

2. Unused Smartphones & Tablets

Church Donations Blog - Used Smartphones Header

If your members are anything like us, they have a drawer full of old smartphones and other mobile devices that they never use. These devices may not be the latest and greatest, but they still work perfectly. Ask your members to donate these unused mobile devices to the church so you can use them for educational games in nurseries, learning tools on youth retreats and listening assistive devices for elderly and hard-of-hearing members, or for those requiring translation services.

3. Stocks or Mutual Funds

Church Donations Blog - Stocks Mutual Funds Header

Stocks and mutual funds can benefit both the church and the member donating them. Churches can take advantage of increased funding over time if the markets improve, and members can take advantages of tax deductions. Win-win!

Note: You should always consult a tax professional before accepting these types of donations to ensure you are getting the most benefit and handling it properly. Encourage your members to also speak with a tax professional.

4. Vehicle Donations

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Selling a used vehicle can be a hassle, and trade-ins aren’t always as valuable as one would hope. Encourage your members to donate their unwanted vehicle to your church to eliminate the headache of selling, and get a tax deduction. You can then fix up the car and sell it yourself, investing the money back in the church, or donate the car to a family in need.

Through unique and modern donation methods, members can provide their support more easily, helping your church operate and grow more efficiently.

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AudioFetch Blog Post - Wireless Church Audio System

Offer the Miracle of Hearing to Your Church Congregation

By | Churches | No Comments

Masses of people flock to worship services to seek counseling about the things in life that challenge and worry them. People come ready to be inspired by a power greater than themselves and to interact with others on a path of positivity. Most of all, people come to be uplifted in a world that often leaves us wondering about our purpose and fated course of action.

People experience a grand portion of these services audibly: following the words of the pastor, enjoying the hymns of the choir, talking and sharing with others. Much of the appeal of being in religious spaces is felt through our ears.

Aging adults and the hearing impaired may find it disappointing not being able to fully engage in church services. What might also come as a surprise is that according to general statistics on hearing from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders about 15% of adults of all ages and backgrounds have varying degrees of hearing loss or trouble hearing. In fact, NIDCD estimated that 28.8 million adults in the U.S. might benefit from using hearing aids.

Lack of accessibility in places of worship can lead to a decline in service attendance, especially for those with aging congregations. Loss of hearing is alienating and may lead people to shy away from attending services and interacting with their community like they may have before. Offering only unaided services could lead to the negative outcome of people remaining at home to listen to services on devices like radios, television sets, computers and phones where they can adjust the volume to suit their needs.

Hearing loss can affect anyone and offering accessibility tools to individuals who might need them can set one place of worship apart from another as an open and accommodating community. Besides setting yourself apart as a hospitable place, you will be able to reach your congregations at different stages of hearing ability.

Offer the miracle of hearing with assistive listening devices for churches and help your congregations hear better.

AudioFetch Blog Header - A Better Solution to Hearing Loops

A Better Solution to Hearing Loop Systems for Churches

By | Churches, Food for thought, General, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

Churches and houses of worship around the globe use inductive hearing loop technology to allow their members to hear better during services. A hearing loop is a wire that hugs the perimeter of a room and is plugged into an amplifier. That amplifier creates a magnetic signal, which is then sent to the T-coil in a hearing aid, providing a clearer audio without interference.

Hearing loops have helped millions of people and are a great solution that does not require any additional devices for the listener, besides a hearing aid. But what about the people that don’t have or refuse to wear a hearing aid? And what about the business implications of installing wiring in every room?

There’s a better solution for churches and members alike. It’s wireless audio streaming. Below are four reasons that wireless audio streaming systems are better than hearing loop systems for churches:

  1. No Hearing Aid Required

Oftentimes, people don’t wear hearing aids when they should. The reasons are many:  They forgot it at home; it’s too uncomfortable to wear; it creates too much feedback; it’s too expensive to purchase; or it makes them feel old. Whatever the reasons, not wearing a hearing aid when you need one can lead to feelings of isolation and missing out on important conversations and connections.

With wireless audio streaming, all the listener needs is a smartphone or mobile device, which nearly everyone has already and never leaves home without, and headphones.

  1. No Wires, No Hassle

For businesses, the costs associated with installing wiring in every room and the time- and labor-intensive process of installing the loop wire are often prohibitive. A system that streams audio locally requires no wires, and installation involves simply plugging in the equipment, connecting to wifi and configuring channels. It really is that easy!

  1. Minimum Equipment

A single piece of equipment is required for local audio streaming systems. If you’d like expand coverage or connect with other audio sources, you can add a transmitter and receiver, but these are entirely optional.

  1. Lower Installation Cost and No Monthly Fees

Depending on the size and construction of the venue, installation of hearing loop systems can be difficult. You’ll need to pull up carpeting, tiling or baseboards (which may then need to be replaced), and metal in walls or floors can oftentimes create interference. Therefore, installation usually requires specialists, can be quite messy and takes some time.

Compare that to local audio streaming systems, which are essentially plug and play. And with a system like AudioFetch, you only pay for the equipment, we do not charge any recurring monthly usage fees.

Save time and money, and make it easier for your members to hear with wireless assisted listening devices for churches. Call us at 1-877-301-8639 or send a note today to learn more.