Verizon Gives It’s Tour Customers Push To Talk With The 5.0 Update

April 7, 2010 | By | 6 Comments

PTT or Push To Talk, is a feature Verizon offers on their sturdy rugged phones. It’s a favorite of construction workers, city workers, even ranchers and farmers. But with the update of the Tour, it’s a feature offered to all Verizon Tour customers. Let’s take a closer look at the new Push To Talk feature.

Verizon has listed the Push To Talk for the Tour. What is Push To Talk? Here’s Verizon’s description:

Make quick exchanges.
Push one button to contact team members or clients.
Place group calls.
Hold conversations with as many as 50 total participants.
Check team member status with Presence.
See who is available for a Push to Talk call.
Manage contacts for the entire company online.
Add, delete and assign contacts, create groups and more.
Use one number, one device.
Make and receive voice calls without needing a second device or phone number.
Enjoy coast-to-coast coverage.
Connect on our nationwide broadband network, and get expanded coverage across the United States within the National Enhanced Services Rate and Coverage Area.
Push to Talk on BlackBerry.
Get instant two-way communication at the push of a button with Push to Talk on the BlackBerry, now available on the BlackBerry® Tour™.

Now if you have Verizon and a Tour, if you upgrade the OS with 5.0, then you have the Push To Talk Capability. After you upgrade you have a limited time offer to call to get in on the free offer. You can call either the Business side at 1-VZW-4BIZ or 1-800-2-JOIN IN for consumers. After calling, you are free to go to download the app. This is either in the Application Center or the VZW bookmarked page under the services. After downloading the app, you can go to Options, Push To Talk, and enable. This will now make the left side shortcut key open the push to talk. If you look at the top picture, you can see the BlackBerry Messenger icon with a message indicator and another icon to the right. This is the Push To Talk indicator letting you know the Push To Talk feature is enabled.

So what exactly are the features of the Push To Talk? You can find Verizon’s Push To Talk FAQ’s here. You can find instructions, a coverage map, and answers to many questions you may have.

Let me show you a few of the features of the Push To Talk features of the Tour.

First you need to add contacts. You add them by their phone number. They must be Verizon Push to Talk customers for them to be enabled as users. You can also designate groups and temp groups for your contacts. You can add, delete, and rename your contacts.

To add a contact, you can either click on the left shortcut key or by clicking on the Push To Talk icon. Click the menu button and choose either new PTT Contact or New PTT Group. You can also rename your contact should you save and realize you need to change the name. Click the option button and choose save when you’re done. After the contact is added , you are given the choice of Alert, Call, or SMS your contact, to add to group or copy to contact book. You also have an option called Filter. Filter is to choose a category to view, such as PTT Contacts (Only Show PTT contacts), PTT Groups (Only Show PTT Groups), and Presence (Only show online PTT contacts and groups). Make a group by choosing new group, and when you name and save it, go into it and from there you can click the option button and choose Edit or Add Group Member. From your PTT Contacts, you can choose who to add to the group. You can edit or delete members as you go.

It’s extremely easy to use, much like a walkie talkie. After setting up your contacts, you can access the app by either clicking the left shortcut key, or clicking on the PTT icon. You can send an alert to do the Push to Talk to your contact which alerts them and they accept, or you can do what is called a Barge Call which is where it goes straight through. This is great for the coworker, spouse, or teen that never answers their calls the first time.

Talking on the PTT requires that you hold down the left side key while speaking into the phone. Release when you are done. It will tell you talking or listening as the other person is speaking. It takes a little practice, but it’s extremely useful. So if you have Verizon and want or have the Tour, now you can hurry and get the Push To Talk feature free.

When in a Push To Talk call, regular phone calls will not come through as in call waiting. They will be directed to your voice mail. If you are in a regular phone call, the Push To Talk caller will get the message that you are unavailable. Also, you cannot call someone with Push To Talk using just the prefix and number, nor can you use the one. You must dial the area code, prefix, and the number to be able to call using Push To Talk.

When you want to disable the Push To Talk feature, you can do so by going to Options, Push To Talk, and disable.

Not only did the Push To Talk feature come out with the Tour, but also the Backup Assistant which is nice for the users who don’t ever use the BlackBerry Desktop Manager. Let me explain this though…The Backup Assistant ONLY backs up your contacts. Not pictures, not texts, not emails, ONLY contacts. The BlackBerry Desktop Manager can do a backup of ALL your settings, messages, and you can back up pictures and ringtones. Keep this in mind. If contacts are your only concern, then you’re set. Both the Backup Assistant and the Push To Talk features are new to a smartphone, let alone a BlackBerry.

I have to admit, this is a great move on Verizon’s part, as I know there are many people who love this feature, but there are also many people who could benefit from it who haven’t tried it yet. Are you a Verizon customer who has tried PTT yet? If you are a Verizon customer with a Tour, trying the Push To Talk is worth a try as it’s free for a limited time offer, so hurry. Let us know your thoughts, we’d love to know what you think of it.

Filed in: BlackBerry, BlackBerry OS, Downloads, Free Apps, Software | Tags: , ,

  • Tony

    I don’t care for the fact you can not turn the barge call off. This could get fairly anoying quickly

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