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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the CapTel Captioned Telephone?

The CapTel handset is a new telephone using innovative technology that allows people to receive word-for-word captions of their telephone conversations. It is similar in concept to captioned television, where spoken words appear as written text for viewers to read. The CapTel handset looks and works like any traditional phone, with callers talking and listening to each other, but with one very significant difference: captions are provided live. The captions are displayed on the phones built-in screen so the user can read the words while listening to the voice of the other party. If the CapTel phone user has difficulty hearing what the caller says, they can read the captions for clarification.

Can I get captions on my current telephone?

No. CapTel requires a customised, built-in display screen to show the captions properly, together with highly sophisticated electronics and software to handle both the voice and text. Captions cannot be displayed on a regular telephone.

Where can I get a CapTel handset?

We want all Australians to be able to enjoy the simplicity of connecting through the telephone for easy everyday transactions and keeping in touch with family & friends. Click here to register your interest in renting a handset for just $55 (incl. GST) a year.

Why do I need an internet connection?

When you call someone, or answer a call, and have the captions option selected, the call is routed through a captioning centre. Here a captioner will hear what the other party says and use voice recognition software to create captions sent directly to your CapTel handset. This service is provided through the internet.

If I don't have internet what should I do?

There are many options to get a sufficient internet connection for a CapTel Handset. The CapTel doesn’t require super-fast internet speeds or large amounts of internet usage. Although a fixed internet connection i.e. ADSL, Cable and NBN is recommended.

I don't have a computer so can I still get this phone?

YES! You do NOT need a computer to have internet or for the phone to work. Please give us a call so we can walk you through some simple options to get internet without having a computer.

What type of internet connection do I need?

The ideal internet connection for the phone to work sufficiently is ADSL2 or ADSL2+. Some ADSL 1 connections are also sufficient. The speed of your internet is the most important factor. You will need a minimum download speed of 0.256 mbps and upload speed of 0.064 mbps. If you are unsure of your network speed you can visit and run the test on the computer that is located at the address you wish to install the phone. Your phone will work perfectly on the NBN too.

How much is the CapTel Handset?

You can rent a CapTel handset for just $55 (incl. GST) a year plus a $50 refundable deposit. Calls are charged at the standard rate that you have with your current telecommunications provider. The handset also requires an internet connection, however the usage is extremely low and you would require the minimum data package only.

How much does the captioning service cost?

The captioning service is provided for free by the Australian Government. All you have to pay is your regular telephone and internet bill with your current telecommunications provider.

Does the phone amplify if the captions button has not been pressed?

No. In order for amplification to function, the captions button must first be pressed.

Get in touch

Phone: 1300 107 546


Free CapTel info session

Information sessions are available and are a great way to learn more about CapTel.
They include:

  • Information about CapTel handsets and rental
  • Demonstration of CapTel handset
  • Q & A about the handset
  • Information about free installations

Contact us to find out if an informational session is available in your area

The CapTel 840i

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Caller’s words appear in text on the handset screen

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Captioning service provided by the Australian Government

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Rent for $55 a year, less than a Telstra phone

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Big screen and buttons

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