Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
VOIP and other free phone thread
Old 08-08-2019, 12:57 PM   #1
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 10,268
VOIP and other free phone thread

As requested by RunningBum, let's start a thread on phones. I am looking into a Google Voice free home phone as I just dumped Comcast and its VOIP setup. We want a "simple" single internet based phone for use in a common area when our cell phones are not handy. Suggestions?

Quote:
Per RunnngBum - A new thread would actually be appropriate for phone service, since this is 107 pages long and the title talks about cutting the TV cord. Someone looking for phone info later is not going to wade through a 107 page thread, and this thread doesn't need to be longer with off-topic discussion.
__________________

__________________
Wear Italian, Kiss French, Drink Russian, Drive German
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-08-2019, 01:14 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Coronado
Posts: 1,185
I think there are a couple of other threads on this topic, but the two setups that seem to be most popular are:

1) Google Voice number with an OBi device - this is what we have. It costs $0/mo after the initial hardware purchase and number porting fee, but we have no 911 service. We could get that for an additional monthly fee.

2) Ooma - has a $0/mo or $9.99/mo option depending on what features you want.
__________________

cathy63 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 01:25 PM   #3
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Golden sunsets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 1,325
We installed Magic Jack last December and have been happy with it. The device itself cost $35 including the first year of service. $39/year for the service after that, or $89 for 3 years. We were also able to port our home phone number (of 28 years) if that is of any importance to you.
__________________
"Luck favors the prepared mind"
Pasteur
Golden sunsets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 01:25 PM   #4
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 10,268
Quote:
Originally Posted by cathy63 View Post
I think there are a couple of other threads on this topic, but the two setups that seem to be most popular are:
Probably should have put the words "cholesterol" or "travel" in the title and that would generate interest!
__________________
Wear Italian, Kiss French, Drink Russian, Drive German
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 01:26 PM   #5
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 10,268
Where is the best place to buy this Obi device? I see some offered with another manufacturer's name on it. Are there differences or different flavors?
__________________
Wear Italian, Kiss French, Drink Russian, Drive German
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 01:39 PM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Coronado
Posts: 1,185
Quote:
Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
Where is the best place to buy this Obi device? I see some offered with another manufacturer's name on it. Are there differences or different flavors?
I bought ours on Amazon. We have the Obi200. There is probably a newer model now, but any one that says it will work with Google Voice should be fine.
cathy63 is offline   Reply With Quote
VOIP and other free phone thread
Old 08-08-2019, 01:40 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
steelyman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: NC Triangle
Posts: 4,162
VOIP and other free phone thread

The basic Ooma service is free but you’re still billed for taxes/fees. There’s a lookup service on their website to see what they’d be in your location:

http://www.ooma.com/
__________________

steelyman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 01:52 PM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
joeea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 3,275
Quote:
Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
As requested by RunningBum, let's start a thread on phones. I am looking into a Google Voice free home phone as I just dumped Comcast and its VOIP setup. We want a "simple" single internet based phone for use in a common area when our cell phones are not handy. Suggestions?
I use my Amazon Echo Show for all outgoing calls now. It works extremely well. Incoming calls still go to my cell phone or my wife's cell phone.

We have no landline.
__________________
Old enough to know better.
joeea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 02:26 PM   #9
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
Where is the best place to buy this Obi device? I see some offered with another manufacturer's name on it. Are there differences or different flavors?
Polycom obi200 on amazon. Should be $49. If you need 2 lines get the obi202 for $10 more.

Working great for me with google voice. Best part is it’s free after you buy the device.
__________________
FIRE'd---4/27/2018 @ 54. DW--RE date 03/01/19.
tdv2 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 02:36 PM   #10
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 205
I add E911 service to my GV / Obi setup for $12/year. gv911.com. So, if you count that, then the Google Voice / Obi route is $1/month.

What I like about it is you can tell it to force people that are NOT in your contacts list, to say their name, then your phone rings and you press 1 to let the call go through. This screens out most of the idiot calls.

It is nice to have a phone number that you can enter when you order stuff, and for doctors offices, etc, that you KNOW they are going to sell the information, as opposed to using your cell phone number. For near $0 per month, it's a no-brainer for me.
__________________
FIREd at 59.5 on 2019-01-18
camfused is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 02:59 PM   #11
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 10,268
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdv2 View Post
Polycom obi200 on amazon. Should be $49. If you need 2 lines get the obi202 for $10 more.

Working great for me with google voice. Best part is it’s free after you buy the device.
Thanks!
__________________
Wear Italian, Kiss French, Drink Russian, Drive German
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 03:00 PM   #12
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Sunny California
Posts: 68
Don't buy the OBI 100 series, Google Voice is no longer supported, but you can still find them for sale. Polycom now owns OBIHAI. Here is the link to OBi where you would create your account.

https://www.obitalk.com/info/googlevoice
RetiredAndLovingIt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 03:08 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 1,438
I have been using Magic Jack for the last 8 years and it has been OK.
jim584672 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 03:09 PM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
The Cosmic Avenger's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Mid-Atlantic
Posts: 640
Quote:
Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
Probably should have put the words "cholesterol" or "travel" in the title and that would generate interest!

Or you could have titled it "CHEAP or FREE phone service!", nothing brings out the LBYM crowd like those words!
__________________
Looking to FIRE in the mid-2020s, which would be our mid-50s.
The Cosmic Avenger is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 03:18 PM   #15
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
JoeWras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,607
Thanks for the thread. I accidentally started the most recent discussion in the cord cutting thread. The above is a pretty good summary of what took place there.

I haven't taken the plunge yet, but based on what I see here and other research, I plan to go with Google Voice and the OBI200. I'll add E911 for about $15 per year.

We also discussed E911. To summarize:
- Old landlines automatically associate your address to the 911 operator. If you are having a stroke that affects speech for instance, they'll still send help to you if you can manage to dial 911.
- Cell phones also give location data, but it is rough and not exact. Assuming you can talk, always tell them your location first when relaying an emergency on a cell phone. (They'll ask too.)
- Google Voice doesn't support 911 services. They are upfront about this. However, the OBI device and your account allows you to piggyback a service that will support E911. The cost of this ranges from $15 to $25 per year, depending on the service.

We didn't discuss it much, but I believe part of the small charges that Ooma and Magic Jack have concern providing 911 service.
JoeWras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 03:53 PM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
JoeWras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,607
For the record, here are the monthly fees for my zip code for "free*" Ooma. Yes, part of the charge is 911 service.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg ooma.JPG (43.2 KB, 36 views)
__________________
Retired Class of 2018
Recent graduate to the lumpen slums of cyberspace
JoeWras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 04:06 PM   #17
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 10,268
Quote:
Originally Posted by RetiredAndLovingIt View Post
Don't buy the OBI 100 series, Google Voice is no longer supported, but you can still find them for sale. Polycom now owns OBIHAI. Here is the link to OBi where you would create your account.

https://www.obitalk.com/info/googlevoice
Not sure I understand this post. Is only the 100 series unsupported by Google Voice? If so, what models (or equipment) is supported by GV?

Is Polycom OK to by for use with GV?

Thanks
__________________
Wear Italian, Kiss French, Drink Russian, Drive German
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 04:18 PM   #18
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
JoeWras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,607
Quote:
Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
Not sure I understand this post. Is only the 100 series unsupported by Google Voice? If so, what models (or equipment) is supported by GV?

Is Polycom OK to by for use with GV?

Thanks
100 is old and they have put out end of support notices.

Go for the 200 or 202. Amazon link for 200.

I'd avoid any "renewed" devices listed on Amazon. This is their new, fancy word for "refurbished," or "crap that someone returned that is generally old." You don't want older models with this stuff.

Just to confuse things, Polycom now owns OBIhai, so you'll see the polycom name on the new models. But not every "polycom" will work. Be careful. Look for the ones that explicitly support GV.
__________________
Retired Class of 2018
Recent graduate to the lumpen slums of cyberspace
JoeWras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 04:20 PM   #19
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 10,268
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeWras View Post
100 is old and they have put out end of support notices.

Go for the 200 or 202. Amazon link for 200.

I'd avoid any "renewed" devices listed on Amazon. This is their new, fancy word for "refurbished," or "crap that someone returned that is generally old." You don't want older models with this stuff.
Thanks!
__________________
Wear Italian, Kiss French, Drink Russian, Drive German
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 04:48 PM   #20
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Cobra9777's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,908
+1 for GV + Obi200. We've used it since 2013, first with the Obi100 and then switched to Obi200 in 2016. Great solution for totally free VoIP home phone service. Google does a fantastic job of eliminating spam calls.

We don't subscribe to a E911 service, but based on this thread, I might check out gv911.com for $1/mo. That's a good price point for me. The website seems kinda sketchy. Question for those who already subscribe... How do you test it? Do you call 911?
__________________

__________________
Retired at 52 in July 2013. On to better things...
AA: 55% stock, 15% real estate, 27% bonds, 3% cash
WR: 2.7% SI: 2 pensions, some rental income, SS later
Cobra9777 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Question about Comcast VOIP phone service MichaelB Other topics 12 02-21-2015 09:19 AM
My Ooma VOIP phone modhatter Other topics 53 07-27-2012 10:15 AM
Replacing phone with VOIP Kroeran FIRE and Money 91 03-21-2010 08:44 PM
And more VOIP - Sunrocket, 2 years for $199 cute fuzzy bunny Other topics 0 04-01-2006 01:16 PM

» Quick Links

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:04 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.