Voice Carry-Over (VCO)

Voice Carry-Over—or VCO—is ideal for people who can speak clearly, yet have hearing loss significant enough to keep them from understanding what is being said over a standard telephone. Using either a TTY (text telephone) and standard telephone or a specially designed telephone that also has a text screen, the VCO user speaks directly to the person being called. In response, the words of the person being called are typed by the Georgia Relay Communication Assistant (CA), and the VCO user reads those words on the text screen of his or her phone.

VCO Diagram

Two-Line VCO

This feature allows a Georgia Relay VCO user with two telephone lines to use one line for speaking directly to the other person, and the other line for receiving the text of that person’s side of the conversation. One of the phone lines must have 3-way conferencing capabilities. This allows for a more interactive conversation by eliminating the use of “GA” (Go Ahead). The CA is only present to type what is said by the other person.

Making a VCO Call with a TTY

(A Georgia Relay Customer Profile is highly recommended for VCO users and will streamline the following steps.)

  1. Dial 7-1-1 or 800-255-0056 to reach Georgia Relay.
  2. On your text screen, wait for “GTRS CA #XXXX (M/F) NBR PLS Q GA.” to appear.
  3. Type the area code and telephone number you are calling, followed by “VCO GA.” If you prefer to give the Communication Assistant (CA) the number verbally, type “VCO GA” and wait for the CA to come on the line.
  4. Once the CA is on the line, if you have typed in the number, the CA will type back “VCO ON.” If you have not typed in the number, the CA will type “VCO ON GA” to alert you to now provide the number verbally.
  5. The CA will type the standard phone user’s greeting to you when the call is answered. For example, “HELLO GA,” or “HELLO ABC COMPANY GA.”
  6. After you see “GA,” begin speaking directly to the person you’ve called. If you are using a TTY, pick up the handset and begin speaking to the other person. When you are ready for their response, say “GA” and place the handset back on the TTY. The conversation will continue back and forth between you and the other person.

* When using a VCO phone, no typing will be necessary. After Georgia Relay answers and a CA is on the line, all prompts will be made verbally.

* If the person you’re calling has never used Georgia Relay, the CA will explain how it works. You will see a message on your screen that says, “EXPLAINING RELAY.”

* Remember to say “GA” or “Go Ahead” each time you finish your part of the conversation so the other person can respond to you.