With the need to employ social distancing, we are all more reliant on technology.
On-line communications platforms in particular have become important in keeping us in touch without excessive costs.
If you need IT-related help then please get in touch. Some of our volunteers are equipped to use remote support software to allow them to help you either install software to help keep in touch with others or to help you resolve problems that you are having.
Please note that this support is remote - we cannot come to your home to assist in resolving any issues.
More details are in the 'Remote IT Assistance' section below.
This page will be updated regularly to provide links to software which you may find helpful. Please ensure that you read the privacy statement for any software and are happy with it before you download the software.
Computer applications to ease social distancing
Please be aware that in order to use video conferencing your computer, smartphone, or tablet needs to have a suitable camera. Some laptop computers have cameras and not microphones or vice versa.
Many families and groups of friends are making use of Microsoft Skype, which is free for personal use, to allow family members on different devices to video confererence. To download this for Windows computers, please go to Microsoft's Get Skype link. Android or iOS users can just search for Skype in Google Play/App Store.
If you are a Facebook user, you can make and receive free video calls using Facebook Messenger. Please follow these instructions.
If all the family or group of friends use Apple devices, Facetime works well.
It is possible to have a video meeting of family and/or friends without downloading an application at all. meet.jit.si provides a free conferencing server using the WebRTC protocol built in to most modern browsers such as Chrome, Chromium-based browsers such as new Edge, and Firefox. Unfortunately, this will not work on Internet Explorer, "Legacy Edge" (the version of Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 unless you have specifically upgraded to the new Edge), and Safari. There is a Jitsi Meet application for 'phones and tablets.
If you do use meet.jit.si, we strongly recommend you set a password on your meeting and provide it to all your invitees. meet.jit.si makes the names of meetings public so it is very easy for univited guests to arrive if you don't set a password!
Remote IT Assistance
In order to provide support, our volunteers may ask you to download the TeamViewer QuickJoin executable which can be downloaded from here. This program only provides remote access to your computer whilst it is running - it does not install anything which someone could use in a malicious way in the future.
Please DO NOT download or run any software at the request of someone claiming to be a Village Friends volunteer unless they have provided you with their name and this name is consistent with the name advised to you when you contacted the Village Friends helpline.
Please ONLY download software at the request of a Village Friends volunteer, after confirming their identity above, if the software is available via a link on this page.