Author Topic: Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV  (Read 3740 times)

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Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV
« on: September 26, 2020, 01:15:11 PM »

Online Neurotic Guy

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Thank you to anyone who can offer some guidance either through this thread or PM.

This regards my 93 year old mother who is currently in assisted living. My mom is hearing and visually impaired -- refuses hearing aid and vision is irreparable but stable re: vision loss due to macular degeneration. She sees a little; hears a little.

A quick synopsis for full disclosure of complications:  She is of pretty sound mind intellectually, remarkable memory when not under stress, but has VERY low stress/frustration tolerance. Therefore, regardless of potential benefit if something isn't profoundly simple to use, she'll reject it.  As an example, she took a fall a few days ago in the middle of the night -- hurt her arm, shoulders, side -- and was crying.  She has a button to press for help from staff (24 hours) -- she didn't use it - - too complicated to consider in the moment.

Due to Covid and the age of her children - 3 of us are over 60 (my 2 oldest sibs close to 70), we've only been visiting outside. Despite governor's opening of visitation in nursing home we want to limit indoor physical visits and have we have a thought about how to supplement with technology (note: all of us are tech-infantile):

Could we get her a Smart Phone that would automatically alert/connect to her through her Smart TV (which is constantly on) -- and would then have us automatically on camera (TV) with audio through the TV?  Best if Bluetooth so no cables and the phone could be near her bed and just press a button (has to be incredibly simple).  Also, could  we call her through our computers so that we could see her better than through our phones (not as essential)?   The cell would be exclusively for contact with her children -- no one else would have the number.

If you think this is possible or have any other simple ideas based on the info above, please share. 

Thanks very much!

NG

« Last Edit: September 26, 2020, 02:13:40 PM by Neurotic Guy »

Re: Question for Tech-Savvy Posters re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2020, 01:46:58 PM »

Offline GreenFaith1819

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Here's my 0.2 cents -

I I think it would a GREAT idea to get her a Smart Phone as you stated above and have it with the interoperability as you stated. It sounds like it would be a GREAT help to her.

My ONLY suggestion is that you employ some sort of Cyber Security with it all - whether it's some Anti-Virus or some other Cyber Security mechanism that will give her (and you too) a measure of protection.

I am in school RIGHT NOW (ECPI) and have learned of some really nasty stuff out there as far as Malware...Ransomware....you name it. And the perpetrators have moved from just desktop computers and businesses to NOW targeting Smart Phones.

Basically - ANYTHING connected to the Net is vulnerable if you don't have SOME measure of protection. I've learned that this has become even more of a problem with more workers having to operate from home because of Covid and do more things on their Smart Phones.

My personal suggestion to you is to talk to someone smart at say Best Buy or maybe even Geek Squad about your plans. we have a LOT of smart people here on this blog that I'm sure can offer other suggestions, as well.

Include your mother in the discussion too but ONLY as a brief synopsis - just so she'll know that you're trying to apply a level of security for her with these new prospective devices. Don't bore her with the details. :)

Whatever is set up for her Security-wise WILL be able to operate in the background of whatever she is doing and she won't have to lift a finger to enable it.

My mother is 76 and she has Cox home suite. She does have some security with that and even THEN she still gets spam calls on her phone because the protection doesn't extend to her phone, at least not yet.

She is mindful, thankfully - of the threat, though.

But yeah Smart Phones...Smart TV's....just about anything that connects to "The Internet of Things" is vulnerable so please be careful.

I really believe that what you are doing for your mother is great and helpful and don't worry - the SECURITY of it all is NOT that expensive....I am certain that a tech entity (or even someone HERE on the Blog) can recommend something to you and your mother that can help her but ALSO keep her safe.

Hope this helps.
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Re: Question for Tech-Savvy Posters re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2020, 02:08:42 PM »

Online Neurotic Guy

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Thanks GF. Thatís something I wouldnít have thought of!

Among other things, very important that she would be spared spam calls as those confuse her on her landline and my bet is that spam calls with be enough to send into full anxiety.  Especially if camera kicks in automatically.

I wonder if her system could be set up only to answer calls from her 4 childrenís phone numbers.


Re: Question for Tech-Savvy Posters re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2020, 02:22:01 PM »

Offline GreenFaith1819

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Thanks GF. Thatís something I wouldnít have thought of!

Among other things, very important that she would be spared spam calls as those confuse her on her landline and my bet is that spam calls with be enough to send into full anxiety.  Especially if camera kicks in automatically.

I wonder if her system could be set up only to answer calls from her 4 childrenís phone numbers.

I think "T Mobile" recently started touting a program called "Spam-Free" or something to that extent. I'm sure other providers have something similar to that as well.

Spam calls ARE a problem - a serious one. "I" am 51 and get anywhere from 3-5 calls DAILY - and that is even AFTER asking to be put on the no-call lists. It is bothersome.

I am thankfully mindful to ignore them and fight through the calls but someone else that is not used to such it COULD very well be a problem - especially since these Spammers prey on the older folks or less informed.

And they can be QUITE aggressive - using Social Engineering tricks to obtain info even IF you don't agree to purchase their fake goods.

Just RECENTLY I've had so-called "Police Unions" or some other Low-Life Rep calling me soliciting donations. They sound official and I've EVEN researched these entities to ensure that they are not legit - and they are NOT.

Sadly - when I called our local Police Department about this to get some friendly guidance the young lady was short with me and seemingly had a BAD attitude. God I "PRAY" she wasn't actually a Police Officer because if she was I wouldn't want to run into her.

She was not helpful at all.

Just be careful and shop around. Like I said such protection is not expensive but make sure she / you have SOME level of it.
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Re: Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2020, 04:47:40 PM »

Offline Erik

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What you are referencing is called screen mirroring. The cell phone and tv are on the same WiFi network and the phone becomes a remove and server and the tv becomes a client. Itís advanced enough of a tech that this setup is possible but there are a few different hurdles depending on the specs of the tv.  Not all smart TVs are equal. If youíre willing to throw enough cash at the problem, itís a piece of cake.

Re: Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2020, 05:07:37 PM »

Online Neurotic Guy

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What you are referencing is called screen mirroring. The cell phone and tv are on the same WiFi network and the phone becomes a remove and server and the tv becomes a client. Itís advanced enough of a tech that this setup is possible but there are a few different hurdles depending on the specs of the tv.  Not all smart TVs are equal. If youíre willing to throw enough cash at the problem, itís a piece of cake.

Thanks Erik! I have 4 siblings so if we have a true solution and can implement it (canít be over our heads) getting the right equipment (including a new TV) would be manageable. 

Remember, she sees vaguely - read or see digits on a phone (she can find a button to push through feel).   So has to be incredibly simple.  So - the ideal situation would be: she got her TV on to a show sheís mostly listening to, her phone rings (a separate cell phone from the landline she uses), she presses her button and the TV automatically shifts from her show to me (caller).  Then at the end of the call, she presses her button and shifts back to her TV setting (or better yet, I hang to automatically shift to Tv) right back her TV setting.  Btw, she has Zero ability to handle physically or emotionally) having to change any setting on the TV.  She operates on one volume setting and one channel only.  She only turns power on and off. 

If you think this can work as described, please give advice on who to contact who could help (is this a Best Buy thing as GF suggested or a Verizon thing?)   

Thanks and TP!

Re: Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2020, 05:12:19 PM »

Offline Erik

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The thing is it canít be fully automated as far as I understand. If she has her TV set to cable news for example, sheíd have to change the source on the tv, take the call, and switch the phone to mirroring .

If itís possible to fully automate, itís a Best Buy question, certainly not Verizon.

You could also post on toms hardware because theyíre way more informed than the average Best Buy employee.  And they wonít be out to rip you off.

Take a look at apples solution to get an idea of how it works
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204289#mirroriOS
« Last Edit: September 26, 2020, 05:21:58 PM by Erik »

Re: Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2020, 06:12:29 PM »

Online Neurotic Guy

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The thing is it canít be fully automated as far as I understand. If she has her TV set to cable news for example, sheíd have to change the source on the tv, take the call, and switch the phone to mirroring .

If itís possible to fully automate, itís a Best Buy question, certainly not Verizon.

You could also post on toms hardware because theyíre way more informed than the average Best Buy employee.  And they wonít be out to rip you off.

Take a look at apples solution to get an idea of how it works
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204289#mirroriOS

Excellent- thanks!

Re: Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2020, 05:18:18 AM »

Offline ozgod

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The thing is it canít be fully automated as far as I understand. If she has her TV set to cable news for example, sheíd have to change the source on the tv, take the call, and switch the phone to mirroring .

If itís possible to fully automate, itís a Best Buy question, certainly not Verizon.

You could also post on toms hardware because theyíre way more informed than the average Best Buy employee.  And they wonít be out to rip you off.

Take a look at apples solution to get an idea of how it works
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204289#mirroriOS

Excellent- thanks!

NG I would suggest talking to Best Buy and see if they can get their Geek Squad to do a home installation and walk your Mom through how to do it. As Erik said it's fairly easy to do, it's always easier to have someone going through it in person and then writing down the instructions in a way that makes it easy for your Mom.
Any odd typos are because I suck at typing on an iPhone :D

Re: Question to Tech-Savvy re: Smartphone connection to TV
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2021, 03:55:38 PM »

Offline 100% Celt

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Probably way too late now (no activity in this thread for at least ninety days) but if you're concerned about internet security (and the advice given about it above is very sound) you could think about using Linux. It's far harder to get a virus/malware/ransomware on Linux for two main reasons:

1. People who develop malicious software generally don't target Linux. The reason is there is an infinitely smaller number of us using it. It simply isn't worth their time and energy to develop something which targets relatively few people rather than something which targets a massive number (the vast majority).

2. It's incredibly difficult to get a virus/piece of malware/ransomware to run on a remote Linux machine. This is because for example, if random guy who uses Windows (or Mac though a bit less than Windows) downloads something nasty it can be programmed to automatically install and run on his (or anyone's) Windows device. If I or any other Linux user downloads something nasty it simply won't install or run unless either they are running in root (you can't do this by accident so you needn't worry about it) or they install it themselves (for which you need to go through stages including entering a password).

This doesn't mean Linux is 110% safe but it's not far off. It's also not remotely as difficult to use as some would have you believe. If this post hasn't come too late and you do decide Linux would be a good option for you, let me know if you need any help.

Btw nobody (or extremely few) makes money off Linux so I'm not trying to promote it for personal gain. Anyone asking you for money for it is a Shyster. Ignore them. There are a multitude of places to get hold of and learn about Linux without paying a cent. Also, almost all the software for it is free too.