A short while ago we presented the first in a series of posts we call Dashboard Magic. It detailed how to use the web-based conference dashboard to dial out to people, adding them to a conference, or reconnect those who had dropped off the call. Most people find that the web-based dashboard is the most convenient way to moderate a conference call, but it’s not the only way. There are many things that can be done right from the keypad of a normal telephone!
Most of the time conference participants simply don’t access the conference dashboard. They may not have convenient access to a computer, which makes the ability to do some basic things from the keypad an absolute necessity.
For participants the basics are as follows, in order of importance:
- *6 – mute or unmute your microphone
- *1 – raise or lower your hand
- *4X – move to a private conference room, where X is a room number
- 0 = the main conference room
- 1-7 are private rooms
- 8 is a special room with one-way glass
Conference hosts have access to a diverse range of functions from the keypad. In fact, there are probably more keypad commands available that anyone can remember.
Nonetheless, this particular post isn’t necessarily about being practical, it’s really about silly phone tricks! So let’s consider how to add someone to a conference, without disturbing the conference already in progress.
- Step #1 – Move yourself to an unused room by dialing *47. (I picked room #7 out-of-the-blue.)
- Step #2 – Invoke the Dial Out function by dialing *98.
- Step #3 – Dial the number of the person you are seeking.
- Step #4 – If the person answers, brief them about the call that they are about to join.
- Step #5 – Dial *947 to move everyone in room #7 to the Main room. Congratulations! You’re done!
- If the person doesn’t answer or you get routed to voicemail, dial *991 to disconnect the last-dialed party.
- Once that line is disconnected you can repeat Step #2 to dial out to another number, or dial *40 to return to the main conference.
See It Now!
Don’t take my word for it, this really works. This 2 minute video shows me adding someone to a conference in-progress without disrupting the presentation in the main room.
We don’t expect that anyone will make it a habit of managing their conference calls from a telephone keypad. The web-based dashboard is simply more convenient. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t options for the more compulsive creative among us.