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Old 10-08-12, 06:12 PM   #51
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A little bit of research (I downloaded the manual AND read it) on the Panasonic BlueTooth pairing, seems that while you can pair up to 2 cell phones, you can only have one connected at a time.

For me, that's a no-go. I would be faced with my wife telling all her friends/family (not really that many) to just call my cell phone. Then for every call she missed, I'd get the voice mail on my cell line that would need to be transferred. Or I could ignore and simply say "Why are they calling my cell phone", but thinking that's not going to go far.

All kinds of potential problems here.

EDIT: Nothing like the internet to do research. Here's a cheaper solution to Panasonic. Let's you pair and connect at the same time, up to 3 cellphones, with no need to replace the existing home telephones. $64 at Amazon.

@ Dnvr. Yes you can make it not ring at night. You simply turn off the cell phone. No cell phone, no BlueTooth pairing, no ring. Or you can turn off BlueTooth. Or if it's an iPhone with OS6, enable "Do Not Disturb", which only allows calls you allow, such as people in your Favorite list, or someone who calls twice in 3 minutes, etc... You can also enable Do Not Disturb for set hours - say 10PM to 9AM.

Last edited by Lightingguy; 10-08-12 at 06:44 PM.
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Old 10-08-12, 07:16 PM   #52
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I switched from landline/DSL/antenna TV to Verizon'sFIOS ssytem (basically a bundled package), and so far my reaction is "meh", aka 'nothing spectacular'. Cost of Fios is slightly more than the other services seperately. The internet is slightly faster, its main advantage is ability to watch longer videos with no buffering. Phone comes with answering service, but you have to go through a password/code sequence to access it that reminds me of a customer service phone tree (ugh!), so I just hooked the ol' answering box up to it. Vidoe on demand is available, but the videos they have are nothing I'd watch (mostly b-grade stuff) - would be nice if they had some oldies to choose from. Cable channels are nothing spectacular, I'd ahve to pay extras for Showtime and HBO (no thanks).

Installation was quick, but the installer did a lousy job of stringing the coax cable and I bet it craps out within a year. I did make a suggestion of where he could put it to make it safe from weather & other exposures, he just told me where to put it.

I have a spearate cell phone, a pay-as-you-go GO phone from ATT. about $11/month averaged over two years. Don't need a smart phone.
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Old 10-09-12, 09:27 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
As an attached pdf file?
Unless the attached file is encrypted(PDF or whatever), email is not a secure form of communication, period. If an email server is hacked and they get into your email account, the hackers have access to any personal information you put in emails(PDF attachment or not). If you encrypt the file, such as a password protected zip or RAR file(or password protect the PDF file in order to open it), your recipient needs to have the password--and you definitely wouldn't send the password in the same email. Additionally, zip files(even password protected) are not as secure as RAR, WinRar, files--but now we're getting more technical and less user friendly for non geeky types.

BTW, to all those dumping their land lines, if the cell systems get overloaded, such as during a disaster or a system problem, your cell phones can't make calls. Additionally, to all those on digital telephone land lines, if you have no power, you have no phone--also no power to charge cell phones, no phone. During hurricane Isabel in 2003 if memory serves, I was without power for 10 days and without cable for 12, but I never lost my copper wire telephone land line(which have battery backups at various locations to keep the system running). During the first day or two, cell service was extremely difficult because the systems were overloaded, and if I had my phone via the cable company, digital, I wouldn't have had phone service. I chatted with a phone guy once and he said that until it is not available at all, he will keep his copper line.

Last edited by Bikey Mikey; 10-09-12 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 10-09-12, 10:30 AM   #54
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Wow, I feel so, "off the grid", LOL! We have two dumb phones, (flip), spend $45 a month for 700 mins. (T-mobile), and we may use 100. one laptop computer, hooked up to Century Link (thru the phone line), for internet, $45 a month, (which SUCKS!). Our Tv is only SD not HD and still a big tube type, 26in. screen, no cable programing, just digital rabbit ears, (LOL), still basicly free. So I guess we still have a "landline" but we don't pay to use it as a phone, only a internet connection. That's it but we live in a one bedroom apt., have 4 bicycles so we don't really have room for lot's of digital junk anyway.
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Old 10-09-12, 11:05 AM   #55
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This thread is timely as this topic has been on my mind these past few weeks. The specific area of the topic of interest to me is communications media. It occurred to me that the Romans operated a vast empire and the speed of their communication was no faster than a galley could be rowed from one place to another or that a messenger could walk. More recently, during the industrial revolution, large, even world wide enterprises were managed with communications no better than the Romans employed until telegraph can into use. I'm of the opinion that fast communication leads to poorly thought out actions. Faster communication does not automatically mean improved communication.
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Old 10-09-12, 11:50 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
We have something like 9 extensions to our landline. Does Ooma work with these - like plugging into your whole home telephone system? Or is it just for one computer/place?
When you say "extensions" I assume you mean handsets. The answer is yes. We have five extensions or handsets throughout the house, all plugged into the house phone wiring. We disconnected our house phone wiring from the telephone company outside at the box, and just plugged the Ooma box into one of the house phone wiring outlets. Then when a call comes in over the Ooma box, it can be answered with any of the handsets in the house.

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Old 10-09-12, 12:10 PM   #57
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I like the idea of the land line as a backup. Like most services, it is all about price to value. The value equation of communications and entertainment media is simple. If it does not provide value to you or you cannot afford it or understand it, get rid of it or do not buy it. I have found the savings from being digitally well connected and understanding the value propositions of different technologies compelling. YMMV.
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Old 10-09-12, 04:29 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by berner View Post
Faster communication does not automatically mean improved communication.
Yeah it does. Ton's of examples. Ask any member of the military who will tell you that the networking of the varied military systems and users can save lives. Information about medical needs can be readily transmitted to waiting trauma teams. This is true in civilian operations as well. Certainly the use by law enforcement with laptops in their patrol cars helps get criminals off the streets. Our county PD has patrolling cars with video scanners mounted on the outside of their cars that can detect vehicles that have expired plates, outstanding warrants. In some area's of our county they use as system called ShotSpot. A system of directional microphones that can detect gunshots, uses triangulation and can vector cops to the location very quickly. All computer driven.

Or something simple as being able to access our county library system to find out which branch has a copy of a particular book. Save's me a trip to the local library to use their computer. My iPhone has an app that allows me to take a photo of a check that can then be deposited in my bank. It's called Mobile Deposit for CitiBank. Saves me a trip to the ATM.

Just this afternoon while needing to go to the local Social Security office to apply for a replacement SS card, I could sense the annoyance in my wife's voice as she asked me if "I actually KNOW the address ?", which I quickly pulled up on Google Maps on my cell phone (Apple maps had it wrong, as BTW). I was able to quickly reply, "On N Main St, at Randal Ave.", thus improving our communication and avoiding the typical Guys never ask for directions argument.

Last edited by Lightingguy; 10-09-12 at 04:37 PM.
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Old 10-09-12, 07:46 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by Bikey Mikey View Post

During hurricane Isabel in 2003 if memory serves, I was without power for 10 days and without cable for 12, but I never lost my copper wire telephone land line...
Great advise. My mother just rode out Hurricane Isaac in New Orleans (with most of her neighborhood). She bartered her landline with use of neighbors' generators. Everything was down for a week or so except her phone.
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Old 10-10-12, 08:03 AM   #60
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The actual function of the so-called "landline" is changing and you need to be be aware that the term is generally used to describe the older copper paired telephone wires that go from the house to the local telephone building. This was all set up my Ma Bell way back in the early days of telephone service and have been replaced for many users, by either a hardwired connection to the cable company, or possibly hard wire to a Verizon FIOS fiber optic connection.

Of the 3 types of hard wire, only the traditional Ma Bell copper can typically provide un-interrupted telephone service during a power failure, due to the basement full of batteries at that local phone company building that powers the system. The cable coaxial as well as the Verizon FIOS systems in theory, can be powered by power backup systems, but those backups are less reliable then the old copper systems. As well, both the cable company as well as Verizon then need to keep their computer head end facilities (where the coaxial and fiber optic lines all come together) up and operational. Then you might have a Cable or Verizon supplied battery system in your basement that powers the house system. And of course we are all using cordless telephones that require a powered AC outlet to function. And of course if you have a "hardline" that's actually VOiP (Voice over internet provider), your entire internet system needs to stay operational during a power outage.

So a lot of things need to be considered as to how your particular phone system operates, before you automatically assume that a landline is going to give you better reliability then a cell system.
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Old 10-10-12, 08:54 AM   #61
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I am constantly amazed at all the electronic devices that everyone seems to "need." Some of my motorcycle buddies have a GPS for their bikes. In fact that's become common in my circles. I don't get it. I understand the value of information but I enjoy using my brain to remember things or to figure out things. While my friends are using their smart phone calculators to figure the 15% tip on a $33 lunch bill, I'm the one who knows that 10% is $3.30 and half of that is $1.65 and added together it's $4.95. I always get there before they do.

At home we have a land line but only because cell service sucks in the boonies. My cell phone is basic (just this side of rotary dial) and I don't need it to tell me who played the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz while I'm out having a beer with friends. I love my PC but I don't need to take it everywhere with me.

It's not that I don't appreciate the value of all these things. I just don't want to live my life through them. Which is why I'm not on Facebook "friending" 4,000 people or twittering to tell everyone I'm eating a tuna sandwich for lunch.
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Old 10-10-12, 08:55 AM   #62
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I have a landline as my primary (with a rotary dial phone no less). I assume it is the old style copper line as I have lived here since I bought the house in 1986. I do have a tracfone but no computer as I use the public library computer for internet access. I have a rooftop antennae for my HD (42" inch) tv which gives me plenty of program choices. I don't have an ATM card and pay my monthly bills with a "checks in the mail".
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Old 10-10-12, 09:04 AM   #63
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Originally Posted by rck View Post
"checks in the mail".
Check is In the Mail Lawyer Joke

A very wealthy lawyer vacationed for several weeks each year at his summer home in the backwoods of Maine. Each summer, he would invite friends to come to visit him.

One summer he invited a lawyer from the Czech Republic to visit. The friend, eager to see how a wealthy American vacationed, gratefully agreed. They had a wonderful vacation, and spent a great deal of time exploring the woods and enjoying the natural setting.

One morning, as the lawyer and his Czech friend were walking through the woods, they were approached by two huge bears -a male and a female. The lawyer noticed them in time to run for cover. His friend, however, was not so lucky. The male bear reached him and swallowed him whole.

Seeing this, the lawyer ran to his Mercedes and sped for the nearest town to get the local sheriff. The sheriff grabbed a high-powered rifle and they raced back to the berry patch. Luckily, the bears were still there.

"He's in THAT one!" cried the lawyer, pointing at the bear that had consumed his friend. "Quick - shoot it. Maybe we can still save my friend!"

The sheriff looked at the bears, leveled his gun, took careful aim, and shot the female. His aim was true, and the female bear collapsed to the ground. The startled male fled into the woods.

"Why did you do that?" demanded the lawyer, "I said he was in the other bear!"

"Exactly," replied the sheriff. "Would YOU believe a lawyer who told you that the Czech was in the male?
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Old 10-10-12, 09:16 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
Check is In the Mail Lawyer Joke

... he invited a lawyer from the Czech Republic to visit. ...
No doubt in my mind the Czech lawyer would have been fitter as a bicycle commuter and able to outrun the typical overweight US lawyer
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Old 10-10-12, 09:25 AM   #65
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After talking to my son last evening at grandsons 5th b'day party I've decided to add insult to technology injury, go over to the dark side and get a mini-iPad when they're available. Nobody wants to lug a notebook computer around except for business purposes (and my business purpose days are coming to a close) so the mini looks like a way to keep up on the inter-web and access video and other types of content when you're not sitting in front of a computer or riding. To counter-balance this new acquisition I'll soon not be dealing with all the technology stuff that comes with my line of work.
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Old 10-10-12, 11:19 AM   #66
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Originally Posted by con View Post
Get a big dog.

... I like my postman (woman) fine. How about training the dog to chase French bikes?
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