Tech Byte: Tech to Help You Stay in Touch

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Even though many businesses are reopening, most of us are still spending a lot of time at home. It’s still harder to see most friends and family, at least in person.

In this segment of Tech Byte, Emily Cassulo looks at some tech that can help you stay in touch virtually.

Google Home Hub

Nathan Roach with Best Buy recommends the Google Home Hub if you want to see your friends virtually.

“At night, instead of having the face to face conversation, you can literally sit down, have a video call, chat, catch up, and things like that, and you don’t miss that face to face time, which is really good,” Roach said.

Roach says you have plenty of options for video chatting. If you have any Apple products, like an iPhone or iPad, you can always use FaceTime.

Amazon Echo Show

You can also do video calling on the Amazon Echo Show. 

“Facebook even has a video calling device called the Portal that a lot of people are getting to be able to not only browse through Facebook. But you can video call your friends, family,” Roach said. “Whatever it may be, and you can even put it on your TV if you don’t want a separate device in your house.”

Most of these are stand-alone devices.

“It makes it super easy. It actually pops up like a phone call on the screen, so you’ll know if Grandma or Grandpa is calling, or whoever it may be, and you can answer it just like a phone call,” Roach said.     

You must have WiFi to use these devices since you’re streaming video. But if you’re not tech-savvy, Roach says it’s easy to set up.

“A lot of times it’s just as simple as, as long as you know your network name and password, you type in a couple of quick credentials. You’ll be online in no time, and making calls in less than five minutes,” Roach said.

Free apps

If you don’t want to necessarily buy a new device, there are plenty of free apps you can download to talk to people virtually.

Zoom, Skype, and Google Hangouts are just some of many that are good to have.

You can always invest in a webcam, if you don’t already have one on your computer, as well.