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Game Day: Should You Watch at The Stadium or a Sports Bar?

By | Sports Bars, Stadiums | No Comments

Fall is finally here! Turning leaves remind us we’ll soon be with loved ones eating pumpkin pie and cheering for our favorite sports team. Whether at home, at a bar or live at the stadium, watching sports in a group has been proven to have important health benefits

“We know that people live longer and recover more quickly from an illness when they have strong cases of social support,” says William Wiener Phd. “If you have a group of people you watch a game with consistently who offer support when you are down, it does lead to longevity and can keep you active and engaged and alive longer.”

Watching sports in a group also keeps your mind active. Research by  the University of Chicago shows that a region of the brain usually associated with planning and controlling actions is activated when fans listen to conversations about their favorite sport. 

Additionally, the reason that we enjoy watching sports in groups is because of our memories.  NPR social science correspondent Shankar Vedantam says, “We connect with sports teams through family, through our parents taking us to ballgames, and that’s why following a sports team feels so intense because it’s tied up in these family loyalties.” 

And none of these benefits even include the fun of putting on the t-shirt of our favorite players and our game-day face paint before meeting up at the local sports bar or heading to the stadium for a tail-gate party. But which is the better location to watch the game? 

Many would answer that question by saying it’s obviously the stadium. The energy of the crowd, the live action, and the opportunity to do “the wave,” among other things, make attending a live sporting event exhilarating. 

Stadiums are exciting, but also very noisy. Cheering fans, thundering applause, thumping music, hollering vendors, blaring horns can all make it pretty hard to hear the play-by-play. Unless the stadium has an assistive listening solution, you might be better off watching at a bar. With an assistive listening solution for stadiums streaming the play-by-play directly to your smartphone you still get to hear every part of the game no matter how rowdy it gets.  

However, watching your favorite sports team with a group of friends (or even strangers) at a local sports bar is like your own private viewing party. Watching on a TV gives you the advantage of seeing replays and gives you the ideal bird’s-eye view of the action. 

But what happens when there are multiple games on multiple televisions at once? 

Having the volume up on all them would be awful. With the sound off, you miss even more than you might at a stadium, unless the bar has an audio streaming solution that streams audio directly to your device. With a local audio streaming solution you can choose which TV to tune into using the app that receives the sound from a transmitter connected to each of the televisions. So you can have your beer and drink it, too. 

The whole point of getting together for a game is to actually watch the action and hear it even among the noise and excitement of everyone around you.  With an assistive listening device from AudioFetch that streams the game audio to your smartphone or tablet, you’ll get all the health benefits of watching the game in a group, and you won’t miss a single play, replay or stat. To learn more, contact us today!

How to Listen to TV at Life Time Fitness with AudioFetch

By | Fitness Centers | No Comments

You’ve just finished all the Halloween candy, and now here comes Thanksgiving with that big turkey dinner and all those tempting desserts.  After that, you face the stress of getting ready for Christmas. What do you get for Aunt Edna and Uncle George?  

There’s food everywhere this time of year.  Brownies on every reception desk, triple layer dip in the office kitchen, the office party, private parties and Christmas dinner. The holidays can be packed with calories and stress, but our client Life Time Fitness, knows that the number one way to relieve stress is exercise. It lowers stress hormones, improves your ability to sleep, and boosts your sense of competence. 

Listening to music can be soothing and stress-relieving, and it lowers blood pressure. Watching your favorite sitcom or sports team on television can be a great way to pass the time on an elliptical or as a distraction between weight lifting sets (and watching sports is good for your health, too). Not only will you be entertained, but you can set your workout time limit by the length of the program. 

Many national gyms have equipment with small TVs mounted on them – Stair Masters, ARC Trainer, spin bikes, treadmills, ellipticals – so members can watch TV when they use those machines. Eventually though, members move to the gym floor or a different machine, and then their only option is to read closed captioning, or listen to music on their own device with earbuds. What happens when they want to hear what’s on the television at the gym? Even if they could turn it up, they’d still have to deal with all the noise of everyone working out all around them. 

When members of Life Time Fitness wanted to figure out how to watch TV at the gym, the gym decided to install AudioFetch, a gym audio streaming solution. AudioFetch allows members of Life Time Fitness to listen and watch the television program of their choice simply by tuning in via the AudioFetch app on their device. 

AudioFetch is able to broadcast up to 512 inputs of wireless audio options and the no-hassle phone app is simple to use. AudioFetch transmits the audio over local WiFi, so every member of Life Time Fitness clubs offering this amenity can hear what they want wherever they are in the facility. And Life Time Fitness is able to customize the AudioFetch app to match their branding and include important promotions, ads and specials, further enhancing the gym members’ experience and driving more sales. 

If you’d like to learn more about how AudioFetch can improve the experience of your gym or fitness center’s members, contact us today for more information.

Why You’ll Love Traveling by Train

By | Travel | No Comments

Many of us are more than familiar with the hassles of air travel. Having to arrive 2 hours early,  baggage limits, terrible food, and airline travel isn’t exactly a bargain. What if you could avoid all those headaches and still get where you wanted to go at the same for a lower price? That’s just one of the great reasons why train travel could be a great option. Here are 3 more reasons train travel could be a part of your next vacation or work trip.

LOW STRESS:

Train travel is relaxing travel. To start, you don’t have to arrive until about a half hour before the train is due to depart. Since there’s no TSA there won’t be any lines to wait in or x-ray machines.  Not only that, but a porter will be there to help you load your luggage. Amtrak allows you to bring two carry-ons and two checked bags, so no need to worry about cramming everything into that one carry on like you do when you fly.  On a train, you’ll never contend with the fasten seatbelt sign. When you want to stretch your legs you can walk the aisle without having to maneuver around a cart. 

THE FOOD

On some trains, there could be a cart that serves hot drinks and snacks. However, when you are truly ready for a meal, you don’t have to wait for a flight attendant to come by with a sandwich and grapes. Instead, you go to the dining car and order from a menu at a proper table. You won’t be trying not to elbow elbow your seatmate and you might even make new friends.  The food is cooked right there on the train by a chef and is generally very good. The best part is, if you happen to spill something all over yourself, you can take a shower. 

COMFORT

In addition to amenities like full bathrooms with showers, many trains offer roomy seats and overnight compartments where you can relax in privacy. Just for comparison, your seat in Economy Class on any airline is 17-1/2 inches wide and the seat in front of you is about 8 inches away from the edge of your seat. Your seat on a train is 20-1/2 inches wide and it reclines. Plus, when it reclines a leg rest pops up.  You can sleep in your seat, read, meet other travelers, or just look out the large windows and watch the countryside pass by.  Since you aren’t flying over it or zooming past it like you would in a car, a train is the perfect way to see and learn about the places you are traveling through. 

ENTERTAINMENT

Train travel is for the true adventurer.  For people who like to explore, learn new things, and meet new people.  There are no movies or television, but if you really, really must have digital entertainment, bring along your tablet because trains generally have wifi.  But the best part of train travel is seeing something new, and if the train offers local streaming of audio over their WiFi, you can use your own device to learn about what you are seeing through the window.  And talk to your family or your seatmates about it.  

If you’re thinking about traveling this fall, consider making it a train trip. It is sure to be an unforgettable experience. 

Audio Solutions to Help Your House of Worship

By | Churches, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

Baby boomers represent about one-quarter of the American population and as they age, they may begin to experience hearing loss.  Along with that, approximately 5% of the total population experiences some type of hearing disability.  This makes it important for any religious organization to consider and anticipate their needs and give consideration to the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Many houses of worship are looking for ways to leverage technology to make hearing assistance simpler, more effective, and less costly.  

For decades, houses of worship have used inductive loop systems to assist the hearing impaired, but these systems are cumbersome, expensive and still require the use of a hearing aid which many people find embarrassing. Recent developments in hearing assistive technology however, can be a great solution both for houses of worship with tight budgets to assist parishioners experiencing hearing loss.  Some devices use BlueTooth technology, which allows the pairing of cell phones and hearing aids to assist the congregation in hearing the service directly without having to use a headset.  

Audio streaming solutions that use built in WiFi technology work similarly to BlueTooth. These assisted listening solutions for churches allow listeners to hear the service via an app on their own device (phone or tablet) using their own earbuds or headset which can be great for those who do not to wear a hearing aid but still need the audio boosted. By having guests bring their own device to use and listen, houses of worship can save the time and money that would otherwise be spent on upkeep of other audio solutions. For those who cannot afford a smartphone or iPad, some houses of worship have been sourcing inexpensive smartphones or asking parishioners to donate their old phones and iPads.  And, of course, people can borrow a phone during the service or share with another parishioner. 

Not only can a local audio streaming system allow your hearing impaired members to hear the service better, it also opens doors for other creative uses like offering translation services or creating an outdoor movie fundraiser. 

If you’d like more information on how an audio solution that streams over wifi could help transform your house of worship, contact us today. 

Making Your School Safer and More Inclusive

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

It’s back to school time, and that means new school supplies, new clothes, new routines (and maybe a bit more quiet around the house). Parents will be dropping their children off at school, hoping that they will be learning in a physically and emotionally safe, and caring environment. It’s time for your school to start planning everything from field trips to new equipment and regulations. School budgets can be tight so it’s important to have affordable tech solutions that are easy to install and maintain. A wireless streaming device can have multiple uses for schools saving them money, time and perhaps even lives. 

Here are three ways an education audio streaming system could improve your school.

ACTIVE DANGER DRILLS

Parents and children have a right to expect that they are safe in school. Unfortunately, school safety has become an increasingly dominant factor in our educational institutions, and along with fire drills, schools now hold “active danger” drills

In an active danger drill, there can be a lot of noise and teachers need to hear what the issue is (fire, tornado, a crime, etc.) and get instructions. As part of any emergency procedure, it is of utmost importance that the administration and first responders are able to communicate directly and quietly with teachers. 

Of course, one way to do this is through text message, but this can become an organizational hassle as many carriers limit the amount of phone numbers that can be included in one text. A faster and clearer way to communicate with teachers and staff is by streaming local audio over WiFi directly to their smart device. This way, all teachers are alerted at one time and can receive real-time instructions about the situation. 

FIELD TRIPS

While streaming audio may, hopefully, never be used in an emergency, it has further safety use on field trips. Using a personal PA system for teachers, students can be communicated with during travel or any time. Students wandering off or lagging behind can hear instructions about where to find the group. And if the group is inside a museum, library, or other quiet zone, this type of communication keeps the field trip from being distracting to others.

STUDENTS WITH HEARING LOSS

Each year many schools test students for hearing loss. Children may be born with hearing loss or it may develop from infection, disease or injury. Those children diagnosed with hearing loss need accommodations and assistance in hearing teachers, computer, and video lessons. For some children, being placed in the front row of the classroom may be enough to enable them to overcome minor hearing loss for learning. 

However, for others, an audio streaming assistive listening device would be helpful. Streaming audio can be offered to any child via iPad, computer or cell phone – thus overcoming extraneous distractions and noise – to enable the student to hear the teacher or recorded lessons. Not only that, it can also be less embarrassing for the student than wearing a hearing aid.

There are even more creative ways an audio streaming solution could improve your school. If you’re interested in learning more, contact us today! 

3 Fun Ways to Enjoy the Summer!

By | Churches, Education, General, Hearing Assistance, Music, streaming, Theater, Tour Guides | No Comments

Summer is finally here, with its long days that stretch into evening, allowing more time to enjoy life outside, more fun with friends, more time for playing sports. Being outside has amazing benefits as well. Just being outside can lower blood pressure, fight depression and improve memory.  Natural sunlight helps mitigate pain and boost the immune system, plus being outdoors enhances creativity, improves vision, and there’s all that natural aromatherapy.  And it’s all natural. Here are 3 fun ways to be outside and spend time with loved ones (and maybe even learn something):

Outdoor Theater

Attending an outdoor theater production with a picnic is not only healthy for the body because you’re outdoors, but healthy for the mind and spirit too. “Theater is one of the higher cultural activities that mark us as imaginative, creative and truly human,” says Dr. Glenn D Wilson. If the performance includes comedy, all the better. The Mayo Clinic explains that laughter is great for relieving stress and stimulating organs. In the short term, giggling causes a boost in endorphins, the brain’s feel-good chemicals.

Of course, if you don’t arrive early enough to get a seat close to the stage, it may be difficult to hear the actors. Children playing, conversations nearby, traffic, or people walking around can distract from hearing the play. Look for outdoor theaters that offer audio over WiFi streaming so you can be sure to hear every word of the production or even listen to audio translated, if the venue offers live translation.

Walking Tours

Many cities, and even small towns, offer informative and fun walking tours that could help you learn more about the place you are visiting or even your hometown.  Or why not create your own walking tour and invite your friends and family?  Or have your children do it and get an entirely different perspective? They can visit the local history museum and ask the research librarian to help them, or better yet, visit a nursing home and get first-hand stories about locations around town. Intergenerational activity is a great way for parents to help their kids connect with older generations. The children will be so proud to inform everyone about the town and community.  

Of course, if you create your own local walking tour, you might get a crowd and you’ll want to make sure that they can all hear you. A wireless tour guide system is a simple solution to transmit your tour audio directly to your participants’ devices.

Movies Under the Stars

Drive-ins used to be common in cities and even small towns, but now there are only a handful left anywhere. However, with a wireless audio streaming solution that can be easily connected to a projector, it’s easy to make your own outdoor theater. The only other thing you’ll need is a blank white wall (or simply tack up a white sheet).  And, of course, a movie.

You can make it a private event, or if you screen your movie on the side of a building, your outdoor movie screening can become a fun community-building event. The best part is that with an audio streaming solution that transmits audio directly to users’ mobile devices, you’ll never have to worry about disturbing your neighbors!

No matter what you do this summer, we hope you will be sure to gain the benefits of being outdoors. Let us know if we can help make your summer even better by contacting us.

Helping Students & Faculty Hear Better

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

From class trips to translation services to emergency action plans, there are plenty of creative uses for an audio streaming solution from AudioFetch. Check out these education applications to gain some insight into the ways an AudioFetch product could improve the experience of your students and faculty.

3 REASONS TO ADD AUDIOFETCH TO YOUR COLLEGE CAMPUS

A college campus is a vibrant place of learning, ingenuity, and inventiveness.  The atmosphere is ripe with growth and learning, and the technology available on campus for various activities is a great opportunity to inspire students and faculty alike. An audio solution that transmits audio over wifi could be a great addition to any higher education audio-visual department and opens up some creative opportunities to enhance the experience of everyone on campus.

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5 INSPIRING WAYS TO TEACH WITH A PORTABLE PA SYSTEM

As all teachers know, managing a classroom is difficult. It takes skill and effort to wrangle and direct a large group of students; sometimes, it might just seem entirely overwhelming. However, more and more teachers are embracing technology to keep students on task and engaged. Some have found success and inspiration from using a portable PA system for teachers. Here are 5 creative ways you can use a portable PA system with your students.

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AUDIO STREAMING COULD SAVE LIVES IN AN EMERGENCY

Hearing assistive streaming devices are an effective and useful alternate solution for efficient communication. In the event of an emergency, a communication system that streams audio over wifi can reach everyone in harm’s way through their smartphone via WiFi.  A password protected WiFi network can provide secure communications

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An AudioFetch education sound system that streams over wifi could solve so many on campus challenges and be a great addition to the student and community experience.  If you would like to know more about our audio streaming solutions, contact us today!

How to Help the Hard of Hearing at Church this Holiday

By | Churches, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

The messages given at holiday services are special and thematic.  It is especially important that the sermon be heard plainly by everyone, including any new guests who may like to return throughout the year.  Your house of worship may be wondering, how can we help hard-of-hearing patrons in church?

Because there are more people in attendance, there is also a lot more ambient noise with people shuffling feet or moving around on their seats, coughing and sneezing, children talking and being shushed.  Even for people without hearing loss, this makes it hard to hear the speakers making announcements and the minister preaching a sermon. For people who do have hearing impairment it becomes even more challenging to pay attention if they are missing every other word.

Aging adults and the hearing impaired may find it disappointing when they can’t fully engage in church services. The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders states that about 15% of adults of all ages and backgrounds have 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. Your house of worship could achieve the ability to amplify sound to elder or hearing impaired members without disturbing the experience of your other members by using assistive listening devices for churches that transmit audio directly to a smartphone.

You may also have parishioners attending holiday services whose first language is not English and who wish to understand everything that is said.  You may choose to have a translator. This way, all parishioners are together to enjoy the special service and understand it. An audio streaming solution that transmits audio directly to a user’s smartphone, can offer a house of worship the opportunity to offer translation of the service into one language without disturbing the other congregation members who speak the other language.

It’s easy to overcome these issues and allow everyone to adequately hear these special holiday services and offer translation by using a streaming audio system from AudioFetch. Contact us to find out more about how you can more easily reach the ears of your entire congregation.

3 Reasons to add AudioFetch to your College Campus

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

A college campus is a vibrant place of learning, ingenuity, and inventiveness.  The atmosphere is ripe with growth and learning, and the technology available on campus for various activities is a great opportunity to inspire students and faculty alike. An audio solution that transmits audio over wifi could be a great addition to any higher education audio-visual department and opens up some creative opportunities to enhance the experience of everyone on campus.

STUDENTS

Students work hard to become informed and expand their knowledge and skills.  They learn from books, professors, visiting lecturers, and each other. They attend multiple classes and spend long hours studying.  To unwind they sometimes look to the Student Union to share a meal, a televised sports event or an episode of South Park or Jeopardy.

One television, turned up loud enough for so many people to hear, can seem blaring to those who are more interested in talking to their friends.  For students who are studying while they eat, the noise of the television that rises and falls with the excitement of sports announcers’ voices or the music of commercials can be very distracting.  Or perhaps there are several televisions showing different programs and one can’t be heard over another, creating a cacophony of noise. And what if students with hearing disabilities just want to hear what’s on TV more clearly?

Any streaming device that transmits audio via wifi to a user’s smartphone, would be a perfect solution to manage noise levels in shared student spaces like the Student Union or dorms. Think of the peace in having an audio-streaming device that would allow students to listen to any TV through their cell phones.  Earbuds would prevent distracting anyone sitting nearby, and students could still watch together by tuning in to the same channel.

PROFESSORS

Seeking to vary the classes or impart direct knowledge, a professor might take a class of students to a museum, a play, a special lecture or a local engineering facility.  Communicating with students might be distracting to others at the museum, play, or lecture, and might be impossible in a plant, however, a personal PA system for teachers that streams audio directly to student smartphones would allow the professor to communicate with all the students over any other noise and without disturbing anyone nearby. Not only that, through direct streaming, students are more likely to hear every word of instruction through their earbuds and are less likely to be distracted or miss something vital because of ambient noise.

GUEST LECTURERS & PRESENTERS

Very often during the semester, a college will host a special visitor who might lecture on politics, environmental issues, the entertainment industry, or host a Q & A.  These special presentations are open to the public and many people from the community attend. Students attending the college or members of the community whose first language is not English are at a slight disadvantage because they might miss the nuances of the speaker.  Wouldn’t a translator be a big help? A translator could be a volunteer from the community who transmits the dialogue over streaming audio, allowing everyone to hear the lecture in their own language. Not only that, but attendees with hearing impairment could also benefit from an audio streaming device that amplifies the sound of the lecture directly into their ear buds.

An AudioFetch education sound system that streams over wifi could solve so many on campus challenges and be a great addition to the student and community experience.  If you would like to know more about our audio streaming solutions, contact us today!

Hit a Home Run with AudioFetch!

By | Restaurants, Sports Bars | No Comments

Here comes fall!  The days get cooler and the leaves start to turn.  Fall is a beautiful time of year made greater because it is the season of one of the greatest contests in baseball.  Even people who aren’t big fans of baseball will watch the playoffs and the World Series. Their favorite team may not be in it, but they will choose sides and root for a winner, hoping for evenly matched teams that will carry the series for all seven games.

The thing is, baseball has always been a listening sport.  People used to turn on their radios on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon and listen to the game.  That’s why baseball has one of the best announcers in sports – Joe Buck. And, this year, when the 114th World Series begins on October 23, crowds of people will gather in their local pub or sports bar to watch with friends and hear Joe Buck talk about the plays and stats.

With an audio wireless streaming solution that connects to your WiFi, you can set your televisions to whichever games are happening and customers can hear the game they want, no matter where their tables may be, simply by using their smartphones or tablets. It’s a solution that makes all patrons happy – your sports fans have the best possible audio experience, and those who aren’t interested in the game can listen to another option if they choose.

Installing a system that streams audio over wifi in time for the World Series can mean more Instagram moments and Tweets tagging your bar as the best place to watch the World Series, not to mention the year-round benefit. A streaming system can make your establishment the best destination for football, basketball, hockey, and every world championship game.

Get ready now, and contact us to see how we can help your patrons hear TV at your sports bar and give them a better game day experience.