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New virtual visit tool

We just launched an important new safety tool to help provide remote, real-time customer support. Starting this week, TDS technicians can perform installations and help troubleshoot service-related issues without ever having to make an in-home or in-business visit.

“The coronavirus pandemic has made communications services more essential than ever,” says Andrew Buchert, vice president of Field Services for TDS. “This tool allows us to make installs and help customers stay connected while taking safe distancing precautions for the sake of our employees and customers alike.”

Utilizing a video software tool created by TechSee®, TDS technicians can connect to your mobile device remotely to share images and video. This allows you to receive real-time technical support without a technician crossing the threshold. TDS has been piloting the virtual tech visit technology for several weeks and it is now available in all TDS serving areas.

“The feedback we received from customers during our trial of this new tool was overwhelmingly positive,” says Buchert. “It’s incredibly easy to use and customers are getting the assistance they need without having someone in their home or business.”

At a service call, the TDS technician will contact the you and ask if you’d would like to use the new smartphone-based tool. The technician then sends you a text message that contains a link. When you tap on the link, the tool opens in a web browser, without the need to download an app.

You can share pictures or live video while the technician remains on site, but outside the home or business during the call providing assistance at a safe distance. Using Augmented Reality guidance the technology also allows technicians to draw or circle areas on the images to help guide you. While not every customer visit can be resolved using TechSee®, the vast majority of customer contacts can be substantially reduced resulting in a win-win for all parties.

The rollout is the latest way TDS is helping customers stay connected during the global pandemic. TDS also signed the “Keep America Connected” pledge initiated by the Federal Communications Commission Chair Ajit Pai. The pledge allows TDS to defer customer disconnects and the company is waiving late fees for anyone impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic.

 

About Missy Kellor

Missy works on the Corporate Communications team and reports stories to TDS employees and customers. This is right up her alley because she’s an extrovert and also a big fan of research (really, she’ll look up just about anything that strikes her interest). Missy is a native of Madison, Wis. with an undergraduate in Anthropology and a master’s degree in Life Sciences Journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her interest in the Internet as a mass media shaped her work towards a PhD in Journalism and Mass Communications. She’s also worked as an editorial assistant, copywriter, and production artist. In her off hours, Missy is a crafter, Pinterest addict, reader, wife, and mom of two kids. You can find Missy on G+ and on Twitter.
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