METROCONF FOR KINGDOM HALLS

I N S T R U C T I O N S

The following menu options are available when calling the conferencing service at 1-844-221-2100 or 1-888-971-4092 (French) or 1-855-953-4100 (Spanish):

1.Technical Support or Billing. Press 1 at any time to receive assistance in using the system or to set up an account.

2.Connect your Kingdom Hall audio to the conferencing service, and receive a PIN number that will be given to the callers from home. You will be given a one month trial after which you will need to subscribe on the main website.

3.Callers from home press 3 and enter their PIN number to listen to the meetings. They are asked to state their name and number of listeners.

4.Attendants press 4 to access additional options, which include checking the conference volume, getting a list of callers and total number of listeners, as well as getting a statistical report, including the phone numbers of callers, and how often they called.

The access numbers are: 1-844-221-2100 and 1-888-971-4092 (French) and 1-855-953-4100 (Spanish) (see next page)

Registered callers can call the above number at any time, even several hours before the meeting. Once they call, they will get a call-back at the time that the Kingdom Hall audio is connected (usually a few minutes before the meeting).

If they call when the meeting is in progress, the call-back will occur within 1 minute. If a call back is not possible or not preferable, the listener can call 917-732-4145 and connect immediately (no call back needed). However, keep in mind that this is a New York City number, and long distance charges may apply (most often for land lines).

            Additional Setup PDF            Listener PDF

North American Access Numbers

1-844-221-2100

North America (English Toll Free)

1-888-971-4092

North America (French Toll Free)

1-855-953-4100

North America (Spanish Toll Free)

1-917-732-4145

No call backs, NY, charges may apply

 

 

 

 

BILLING

Billing is calculated per auditorium (not per congregation), and billed in advance. Multiple congregations can use the same service. The "Subscribe" section of the left side of the main website refers to one or two "Halls". The service for "2 Halls" does not refer to two congregegations, but to two auditoriums, and would apply in situations where there is a "double" Kingdom Hall with two auditoriums or (in some cases) two separate Kingdom Halls on the same property. The number of users (under 20, up to 39, over 40) is determined based on actual usage during the one month free trial. The term "users" refers to individual phone numbers that are calling in to listen to meetings. Afterwards the usage level is reviewed from time to time (generally at the start of the billing cycle). Internet listeners are not counted in the list of users and do not increase the cost of the service. All transactions for the MetroConf service (except cheques) are handled through PayPal. Therefore (for information security reasons) no credit card, or preauthorized banking information is collected directly, but rather, this is handled by PayPal, a secure payment method. PayPal has a problem resolution system which ensures that customers are protected at all times. If you would like to set up automatic monthly payments from your Kingdom Hall account, please follow the instructions in the following document.

SPECIAL LOW RATES

Kingdom Halls, for example, those in rural areas, that have 4 or less regular listeners in a given month (not necessarily those that have 4 or less listeners per meeting) may qualify for special low rates. Please email your special rate request along with your PIN number to support@metroconf.com

CREDITS FOR DOWNTIME DURING RENOVATIONS

Kingdom Halls undergoing a renovation can request a credit for the period of time that MetroConf services will not be used. To receive a renovation credit, it must be requested, preferably in an email to support@metroconf.com

RECORDINGS

If requested by an authorized MetroConf listener or Kingdom Hall subscriber, an audio recording of a meeting will be made and delivered electronically to that listener or Kingdom Hall subscriber. If a Kingdom Hall subscriber requests that no recordings be made for its listeners, then no such recordings will be made or provided. If requested by a Kingdom Hall subscriber, all meetings at a particular location will be recorded and automatically delivered electronically to that Kingdom Hall subscriber.

SECURITY & ACCESS

Each congregation is responsible for its own security and should log into the account portal periodically to verify that only authorized listeners are using the service. Specific phone numbers can be blocked from using the service through the account portal, and in rare cases the conference PIN number can be changed. Changing the PIN number has numerous implications (for example elderly and infirm ones may need to go through the authentication process again) therefore this step should be used as a last resort in an effort to improve security. If hosting a special event, a temporary PIN can be created through the account portal which prevents the primary PIN number from being compromised after the completion of the event.

CHANGING YOUR LISTENER PIN NUMBER

Administrators can change PIN numbers through the account portal. As a listener, to change your PIN number to a different PIN number, you can call in (1-844-221-2100), and while the opening message is playing (Kingdom Hal is connected .... etc....) you have the opportunity to press 0, and change the PIN number. However, you have to press 0 quickly, while the message is still playing.

LIMITS TO THE NUMBER OF LISTENERS

It is the policy of MetroConf Conferencing for Kingdom Halls that no listener be turned away from listening to a meeting for any channel limit or billing related reason (in rare cases a Kingdom Hall subscriber may block a specific listener from accessing the meetings). Therefore no channel limits of any kind are imposed to block callers from listening to meetings. However, usage is carefully monitored and Kingdom Hall subscribers that make "excessive" use of the conferencing system may be contacted by customer support to discuss their specific conferencing needs.

SUPPORT

Full telephone support is available during normal business hours (Eastern time) by calling 1-844-242-0004 (toll-free). During meetings, texts should be sent to 437-345-7370 or emails should be sent to support@metroconf.com in the event of an outage or any problem, preferably while the problem is occurring, so that it can be resolved quickly (often during the course of the meeting). The average response time for support requests is 5 minutes. Also, if in doubt about whether this was a local occurrence or system wide, please always reference metroconf.com/outages on the following day to see if similar incidents were reported. If nothing was reported, the problem may be local to your location, and a separate email to support@metroconf.com will initiate a support ticket. Always reference your 5 digit PIN number in your emails, and if only one listener is affected, the phone number of that listener. Also, it is recommended that during the meeting at least one brother in every auditorium have access to the report at metroconf.com/kh.cgi?xxxxx where xxxxx is your 5 digit PIN code. This report has a status indicator (Green or Red / Yellow) which will immediately let you know if there is a disconnection (if Green changes to Red / Yellow). Also, if the majority of your listeners hang up (in the report their names will change from dark gray to light gray), but the Audio indicator continues to show Green, this could be an indication that the Kingdom Hall is connected, but not transmitting audio that is being understood by the listeners. In these situations it is helpful to use a cell phone to call in as a listener and sample the meeting to determine if the problem is at the sound desk, or elsewhere.

VIDEO STREAMING

Recently, new Sign Language congregations have been formed. Also, video content has become increasingly common during our meetings. This poses additional challenges for friends at home, who may be able to download some of the content, but due to age and other limitations may find it difficult to do so. MetroConf Video Streaming makes it easy for friends at home to follow the meeting exactly in the same way as if they were present in the auditorium. Simple, cost effective video streaming capabilities are now available that use a cell phone camera positioned at the front or back of the auditorium on a tripod. Kingdom Halls are able to stream video to the friends at home without needing to purchase expensive new equipment. For improved sound quality, a microphone adapter (shown below) ties the Kingdom Hall audio into the cell phone camera. Alternatively, Kingdom Halls wanting to send only the videos being watched (and high-quality audio, without pointing a camera at the stage) can use Open Broadcaster Software, available at https://obsproject.com/. Please complete a support request for more information about how to use this software. Kingdom Halls having high-end camera equipment mounted in the ceiling or at the back of the auditorium can also tie in their video stream, but require a BNC, SDI, VGA or HDMI encoder that supports RTMP (shown below). The encorder recommended by the LDC is the Blackmagic Design DeckLink SDI Capture Card. This encoder is fully compatible with MetroConf video streaming. These video features are available at no extra cost to all MetroConf subscribers. Non-subscribers can also benefit from video streaming by obtaining a base subscription. To get started, simply complete a support request.

Tripod Purchase Information

The following adapter can be used with laptops and cell phones in cases where you need to separate the audio input and output, enabling you to send output from your mixer / preamplifier to the microphone / line in of your device.

Audio Adapter Purchase Information

XLR Adapter Purchase Information

AUTO-WHITELISTING

Caller whitelisting allows certain phone numbers to connect to MetroConf quickly, without needing a PIN number. This makes MetroConf especially suitable for elderly and infirm ones, who can be assisted with the PIN number the first time they call in, but do not need to enter it again.. All callers are, in fact, auto-whitelisted, meaning that they only have to enter their PIN number the first time that they call. Individual listeners can change their PIN number by calling the toll-free access number and pressing any digit while the initial recording is playing.

FEATURE REQUESTS

Feature requests regarding audio, video, reports, security, easy of use, or any other feature request may be made by completing a support request. All feature requests will be given serious consideration. However, priority will be given to feature requests that benefit the largest number of Kingdom Halls.

MOVES TO ANOTHER AUDITORIUM

Individual listeners can change their PIN number by calling the toll-free access number and pressing any digit while the initial recording is playing. However, whether your Kingdom Hall is undergoing a renovation, or you are temporarily meeting in another auditorium, simply email the details to support@metroconf.com including a list of phone numbers, a new PIN number to transfer the listeners to, and the number of meetings in the new auditorium (for example, one meeting, or ongoing until further notice). All of the listeners in the provided phone list will be moved to the new auditorium (either for one meeting, or until further notice as instructed by you). You may obtain the phone numbers of your listeners by logging into the account login section and selecting those phone numbers that belong to your congregation. If you are moving to an auditorium that does not use MetroConf you can also request that the listeners be sent to a recording giving a phone number that they can call or new connection instructions that they should follow.

CALL BACKS WITHOUT CALLING IN

Some Kingdom Hall subscribers have elderly and infirm listeners that may have difficulty dialing a phone number. They have asked that these friends receive a phone call at the start of the meeting without having to call in. Kingdom Halls can now log into the account login section, where they can maintain a list of phone numbers that will automatically receive a call when the meeting starts. This list of phone numbers can also include extention numbers (often used at health care facilities).

EQUIPMENT REQUIREMENTS

Most Kingdom Halls already have the needed equipment. You only need a method of sending the Kingdom Hall audio through the phone line (or Internet). If you do not have the equpiment, then you will need to purchase a transformer similar to the one shown below. The following link points to a website where you can purchase the transformer. The back end of the transformer attaches to the speaker output (70 Volt) of your amplifier. On the front end of the transformer you need to attach a standard telephone plug (below, also known as a RJ11 or RJ12 plug). You will need to attach the green and red wires of the telephone plug to the front terminal posts of the transformer (600 Ohm output). Before the meeting, to connect the Kingdom Hall audio to MetroConf, you would dial the access number 1-844-221-2100, press 2 and follow the instructions. When your phone call is returned, and the phone rings, you would plug the telephone plug of the TLA-70 transformer into the phone line. The splitter (shown below) is used so that you can plug both your telephone and the transformer together into one phone line.

TLA-70 Matching Transformer Purchase Information

LOW TECH EQUIPMENT

A very inexpensive telephone patch solution is also available. This can be ordered (below) on eBay for approximately $5 (US) and will allow you to inject the audio from your mixer / preamplifier directly into the phone line. A number of 1/8 phnoe jack adapters (shown below) are also available on eBay (or from a local audio / electronics store) which will make it possible to plug the telephone patch into the back of your mixer / preamplifier using a 1/4 inch phone jack or 3 pin XLR jack. Once purchased, customer support will guide you through the rest of the setup procedure.

Fixed line Phone Telephone T 3.5MM Laptop/PC/PEN Call Recorder Adapter Converter

HIGHER END EQUIPMENT WHICH ALLOWS FRIENDS AT HOME TO COMMENT

If you have available funds and would like to purchase higher end equipment, the following patch box has a very impressive set of features. The box connects to the XLR output jack of your mixer-preamp rather than your speaker output (as does the TLA-70 above). It allows for two-way (full duplex) communication meaning that the friends at home can give comments that will be heard in the auditorium. Another similar piece of equipment is the Applicad TIF-102. Before making this purchase, please contact customer support to discuss the availability of other options. Once you have purchased the equipment, customer support will guide you through the setup process. You may also click demo to view a brienf interactive demo.

JK Audio Patch Box Purchase Information

CONNECTING AUDIO AT THE KINGDOM HALL DIRECTLY USING VOIP

If you are already connecting at your sound desk by phone and want to use the Internet instead of the phone line, you will need to purchase the following ATA box. Alternatively, a Cisco SPA-112 or SPA-122 can be purchased from your local computer store. Once shipped, setup instructions will be provided to you by customer support. This method of connecting the audio will greatly simplify your audio setup before meetings and eliminate the use of your telephone company phone line to send the meeting audio. Thereafter, your phone line can be used to make and receive calls while the meeting is in progress.

Linksys PAP2T VoIP ATA Purchase Information

$10 PER MONTH VOIP PHONE LINES INCLUDING TOLL FREE LINES

All MetroConf customers can take advantage of the $10 per month VoIP phone service and possibly have their existing phone numbers transferred (ported) to VoIP. Most Kingdom Halls can transfer their phone numbers to VoIP, but a small number of Kingdom Halls in rural areas may not be able to transfer their existing phone numbers, because these numbers are maintained by rural central offices. If your phone number cannot be transferred to VoIP, you have the option of obtaining a new toll free number for the same low price ($10 per month). This toll-free number will allow you to make and receive calls in the USA and Canada free of charge*. Calls to international locations can also be made by purchasing a calling card from a local vendor. The only additional equipment needed is an ATA box (picture and ordering information above). Please click on the Support Request link below to find out if your area is eligible for a phone number transfer or if you would like additional information. Your Kingdom Hall can save a considerable amount of dedicated funds by transferring your existing phone lines (which may be costing $30, $40, $50 or more per month). Once you confirm your order you will be guided through the setup process and your Internet connection will be tested to ensure that you receive the highest possible voice quality. There is no setup fee, and a one month free trial is available to ensure that you are satisfied with the service before deciding to start saving money by transferring your existing phone number(s) or by ordering a toll free number.

Support Request

CONNECTING IMAC AUDIO AT THE KINGDOM HALL USING KHAUDIO

If you are using an iMac Computer at the Kingdom Hall and have installed the KHAudio software follow the training video below. You will be asked to choose a 5 digit PIN number that you will give to the friends at home to listen to the meetings. It is prefered that you call 1-844-221-2100 from the phone at your sound desk and press 2 to complete the registration and obtain a PIN number, rather than choose your own PIN number.

Installing MetroConf in KHAudio - Training Video

LISTENING OVER THE INTERNET

You can listen to the meetings using any computer / mobile phone / tablet by clicking the Listen to Meeting link at the top of the main web page and filling out the form. There is also an Android app available at Google Play and an Apple iPhone & iPad app available on iTunes. There is no limit to the number of listeners using this method, and there is no increased cost to Kingdom Halls for Internet listeners. Kingdom Hall subscribers are in fact encouraged to use the Internet to the extent possible because it frees phone lines which are more expensive by comparison. It is important that listeners not press the Play button more than once, and only in Stage 2 (after 30 seconds, when the message reads "Audio Streaming"). In Stage 3 the meeting audio can be paused and resumed if necessary. If problems are encountered, it may help to use a different web browser (IE Explorer, Chrome, Safari, Firefox).

Get it on Google Play  Get it in the App Store

USING THE ZOIPER APP TO LISTEN, SEND OR COMMENT

You may also use the Zoiper app to listen or comment from a mobile phone, tablet or computer. However, for listening only, friends should use the above Internet method, and Kingdom Halls should use the MP3 software mentioned below. If you would like to send audio from the computer in your Kingdom Hall, or allow friends at home to comment, then the Zoiper app will make this possible. Once you have installed the Zoiper app from Google Play, Apple iTunes Store or Zoiper.com set up an account as shown below (please contact customer support to obtain the password). For more information about the commenting feature, please contact customer support to discuss how the feature works. You may also click demo to view a brienf interactive demo. To listen to a meeting you simply need to dial the PIN number. There is no limit to the number of listeners using this method, and there is no increased cost for additional listeners. Kingdom Hall subscribers are in fact encouraged to use Zoiper to the extent possible because it frees phone lines which are more expensive and less reliable by comparison. Kingdom Halls that have a computer on the desk can also use the computer to transmit the meeting audio using Zoiper and hear comments from friends at home. Please contact customer support for details.

SENDING KINGDOM HALL AUDIO USING MP3 STREAMING

MP3 streaming provides superior sound quality and buffering which makes it ideal for Kingdom Halls that have less stable Internet connections or those that generally want to improve their sound quality. Therefore, a method of sending audio is available using IceCast (ShoutCast equivalent) technology. Kingdom Halls wanting to use this method of sending audio can send a Support Request. They will receive a test package and a customer support representative will follow up with further instructions to help transition to the new transmission software. The computer at the sound desk must have audio coming into the computer (for recording and streaming). The USB adapter recommended by the LDC is the Behringer U-Control Uca222. This USB device is fully compatible with MetroConf audio streaming.

REQUIREMENTS FOR SENDING YOUR MEETING AUDIO BY COMPUTER

To use the computer to send your meeting audio to MetroConf, your computer connection to the sound system (mixer-preamplifier) must be bi-directional (both input and output). If you are not certain if your audio is bi-directional please consult the diagram below or complete a Support Request.

 

* For the $10 per month phone service, Alaska and northern Canada not included. Incoming calls limited to 400 minutes per month, outgoing calls limited to 1000 minutes per month.