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BT has launched a new text service, designed to help people with hearing and speech impairment to make phone calls.

Next Generation Text (NGT) enables people to communicate effectively with others over the phone, either directly or through a relay assistant.

The relay assistant acts as an intermediary - they convert speech to text and vice versa for the two people in conversation.

A free app - which is compatible with Android and Apple devices and PCs - allows customers to use NGT with broadband-connected devices.

Colin Lees, Chief Information Officer at BT Business, said the launch of NGT is "a really important development".

"Whatever your hearing or speech impairment, this will make using the phone much simpler and easier," he claimed.

"The app is free and easy to download and will give you greater flexibility and freedom - you can use the service at home, at work or on the move without the need for a specialised device."

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