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  1. #1
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Any VoIP users in the house?

    If you are using VoIP of some kind, please post which service and the hardware your using it with.

    I saw a few posts in the "what cell phone are you using" thread and didn't really want to derail it anymore than it was, and there were actually a couple of posts in there that interested me.

    I use Google Voice myself to augment my Tracfone, but I don't give out my Google number because I have yet to actually receive a call using it. If I could get like a dedicated handset that worked, that just might solve a couple of problems I've been trying to deal with...
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  2. #2
    Jolly Fat Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    Does Skype count?
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  3. #3
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Skype, Google Voice, Vonage, others I'm sure I haven't heard of... doesn't really matter. Some of us aren't aware of services like these and I'm not totally up to speed myself on using it without a computer.
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  4. #4
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    i use charter voip it comes thru with there modem i hate it manily becuase it was anumber froma guy with bad credit so there always trying to reach him

  5. #5
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    I have a Magic Jack(older model) so I can send the occasional fax or call a toll free number that does not work from Alaska(rare, but it happens). I don't have a heavy reliance on VoIP though, due to the fact that due to costs associated with AK telephone exchanges, I can't get an Alaska number. That and AK has one zip code for the entire state(would make it more difficult to get a local prefix).

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    If you are using VoIP of some kind, please post which service and the hardware your using it with.

    I saw a few posts in the "what cell phone are you using" thread and didn't really want to derail it anymore than it was, and there were actually a couple of posts in there that interested me.

    I use Google Voice myself to augment my Tracfone, but I don't give out my Google number because I have yet to actually receive a call using it. If I could get like a dedicated handset that worked, that just might solve a couple of problems I've been trying to deal with...
    This is what I did at home and it works great.

    Here are the resources you're going to need to port you home phone to Google Voice (GV).

    1. You will need to have a decent hi-speed Internet connection. I have basic hi-speed cable Internet running 10mpbs.

    2. You will need a mobile phone acct to port the number to. We used the occasion to upgrade a phone to an android smartphone, Amazon.com: Samsung Exhibit II 4G Prepaid Android Phone (T-Mobile): Cell Phones & Accessories and then used the old phone to open a new account. T-Mobile is a great carrier for this because you don't have to make a commitment. You can buy as little as you want at $.10/minute. Buying a cheap T-Mobile pre-paid phone over Amazon, finding a used one in your neighborhood or borrowing a friend's spare are all options.

    3. You will need to open a GV account. You will be charged $20 for porting a mobile phone number to GV.

    4. You will need to acquire an OBi100:
    Amazon.com: OBi100 VoIP Telephone Adapter and Voice Service Bridge: Electronics

    5. Once you have completed steps 1-4, you can set up OBi. This is the video that showed me what to do. Just google: How to Use an OBi Device with GoogleVoice - YouTube
    “What does not destroy me, makes me strong. [Or, What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.].”

  7. #7
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    I have a home phone handset set up with Google Voice and an Obi100. It has been working great. I dumped our regular landline service. Our 3mbps DSL is fine for the GV use. I took a new GV number, not bothering to port a number to GV. Family and friends adjusted fine to our new phone number. We have cheapo Tracfones for occasional calls away from home.

    I like that missed call notifications and voicemail messages are sent to my email. I even have the voicemail transcripts sent to my cell phone. So my cell becomes my answering machine when I'm away from home.

    Any speculation about whether GV will still be free in 2014?
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  8. #8
    Senior Member bikebuddha's Avatar
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    I use google voice regularly. One of its great features is to have one number ring multiple phones.
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    Download the free Magic Jack app on your smartphone. Sign up for a free number and put it in your contact file. Dial long distance anywhere in Canada or the US or to any other person with a Magic Jack number wherever they are in the world for free. I have been using it all over the world to call home. All you need is wifi. No hardware to buy, no contracts, no costs, just free calls.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eofelis View Post
    I have a home phone handset set up with Google Voice and an Obi100. It has been working great. I dumped our regular landline service. Our 3mbps DSL is fine for the GV use. I took a new GV number, not bothering to port a number to GV. Family and friends adjusted fine to our new phone number. We have cheapo Tracfones for occasional calls away from home.

    I like that missed call notifications and voicemail messages are sent to my email. I even have the voicemail transcripts sent to my cell phone. So my cell becomes my answering machine when I'm away from home.

    Any speculation about whether GV will still be free in 2014?
    My GV number is one they assigned as well (I'm a cheapskate and didn't want to port my mobile- nor did I have an Android device when I set it up). I'm going to check out that Obi thingamajiggy.

    As to whether GV stays free... I haven't been following it the news/blogs, but my gut says "no". I suspect that it will stay free until they take a bigger bite out of Skype's pie. Google has been wanting to lure enterprise clients away from MS and GV should help in that regard (at least for self employed/smaller outfits).
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  11. #11
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    I've looked around on the web a little to see if there were any discussions as to whether GV will continue to be free. I have not found much. In the past Google announced at the end of Dec that the next year would be free. I think that if they were to start charging some sort of price that they might let users know about it a little more ahead of time than late Dec. so we might hear something soon if that were to be.

    On one forum one person who claimed to know a person at Google who was "in the know" said there was no plans to charge for GV use but that Google doesn't want to come out and say it's free forever. It's better for them to announce it year to year.

    I'm quite happy with the GV, it's really easy to customize it for how I use it. Couldn't do that with a landline. I even grabbed two more GV numbers for future use or to use with my tablet on wifi. If they did charge for GV use I can't imagine it would be much as there are plenty of other voips out there for competition.

    I haven't tried it much but you can use GV and an app (Talkatone or GrooveIP) to make calls on wifi for free. Some people get a smartphone with no service plan (just use on wifi) or ipod touch to do this. I can even do this on my Google N7 tablet. It will work fine as a speakerphone in a pinch. I'm not going to be holding a tablet up to my head LOL.
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  12. #12
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    We just switched to Vonage. They gave us three phones, one with voice mail for signing up. It was cheaper than replacing our landline phones that wore out. Service is half of what we were paying before. A few hiccups getting it to work, but once it was up, it has been bulletproof.
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  13. #13
    Mo No steelblue's Avatar
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    I have been using Ooma for about a year now and haven't had a problem with it. Easy to set up. I even set up my fax on it. I pay $10/mo for taxes and 911 fee with unlimited LD calls.

  14. #14
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steelblue View Post
    I have been using Ooma for about a year now and haven't had a problem with it. Easy to set up. I even set up my fax on it. I pay $10/mo for taxes and 911 fee with unlimited LD calls.
    I just started using Ooma also. I am going to see how it goes then port my home phone #.

    GV is very confusing to me. I have an Nexus 7. I figured out how to make calls but for the life of me can't figure out how to receive. My Nexus does not have a phone. Do you need a regular phone # that is ringed?
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

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  15. #15
    rugged individualist wphamilton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eofelis View Post
    ...
    ...
    I haven't tried it much but you can use GV and an app (Talkatone or GrooveIP) to make calls on wifi for free. Some people get a smartphone with no service plan (just use on wifi) or ipod touch to do this. I can even do this on my Google N7 tablet. It will work fine as a speakerphone in a pinch. I'm not going to be holding a tablet up to my head LOL.
    I have tried it and it works great. Except that when I did get the obi100 box (since January) you can't do both. If you have a tablet app for the google voice account the OBI box won't pick it up. So either tie it into your land line or use the tablets, but not both.

    I'll elaborate about a few things brought up in the thread. Using Ooma you have to pay tax for the account, using GV with OBI you don't. Otherwise they're both free.

    Whizzer's instructions are basically correct if you want to port a number but you don't have to port one. So you don't actually need a mobile phone and you don't need to go through the process of porting, nor pay the port fee. The voip box plugs into your house line and rings on your house phones. You give out the free Google Voice number, and done. You can also forward the calls to regular mobile phones so that an incoming call rings everywhere. The catch is that getting the free GV number to begin with you have to have an existing phone - google says land line only but I have used a mobile phone. Once GV is set up it doesn't matter.

  16. #16
    Mo No steelblue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
    I just started using Ooma also. I am going to see how it goes then port my home phone #.

    GV is very confusing to me. I have an Nexus 7. I figured out how to make calls but for the life of me can't figure out how to receive. My Nexus does not have a phone. Do you need a regular phone # that is ringed?
    I got a new number since I didn't wan it to pay $40 just to keep my number.
    Just remember that your current number has to be active before you can port it.

  17. #17
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
    I have tried it and it works great. Except that when I did get the obi100 box (since January) you can't do both. If you have a tablet app for the google voice account the OBI box won't pick it up. So either tie it into your land line or use the tablets, but not both.
    I have a second GV number to use for the tablet/talkatone setup. I figured that if I were to try to call the home GV number from the tablet I'd need a separate number for tablet. I also have a 3rd GV number that I grabbed for some future use.
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  18. #18
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    OBi users (most likely in conjunction with GV), I got a question for you. If someone in on the internet and someone picks up the phone to make a call, does it disrupt the web surfer? I ask because ~20 years ago I could make calls using my PC, but any calls on the phone would cut the network connection on the PC.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  19. #19
    rugged individualist wphamilton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    OBi users (most likely in conjunction with GV), I got a question for you. If someone in on the internet and someone picks up the phone to make a call, does it disrupt the web surfer? I ask because ~20 years ago I could make calls using my PC, but any calls on the phone would cut the network connection on the PC.
    No interference, because the OBI box has it's own IP address. It's just like another internet connected device as far as the router and network are concerned.

  20. #20
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
    I just started using Ooma also. I am going to see how it goes then port my home phone #.

    GV is very confusing to me. I have an Nexus 7. I figured out how to make calls but for the life of me can't figure out how to receive. My Nexus does not have a phone. Do you need a regular phone # that is ringed?
    Try this (just did myself and it worked for me):

    1. Go to your GV inbox.
    2. Find and click the Gear icon (should be near the top right below your name).
    3. First tab is labeled "Phones", ensure that the "forwards calls to" box for Google Chat is clicked (with associated Gmail account).

    I had my wife call me and it went to my phone. Then I did those steps I just mentioned and had her try again- it was routed to my laptop. It even rang while I had my availability for chat as "invisible".

    Mind you, I also had Gmail up waiting for the incoming call(s) and that may have influenced my results a bit.

    From what I gather, Windows 8 doesn't allow for Google Apps to be supported natively, so I'm going to have to either keep Gmail opened as a pinned tab or see if the Google Voice extension in my browser (Comodo Dragon is the primary; also on Firefox and Chrome) will be sufficient.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  21. #21
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
    No interference, because the OBI box has it's own IP address. It's just like another internet connected device as far as the router and network are concerned.
    This is good to know.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  22. #22
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Okay, just tried to call myself using my wife's mobile after closing the tab that had Gmail. I did not hear it ringing on my laptop, though I could hear it ringing on her phone. Looks like I'll have to keep Gmail open up in the background after all...
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  23. #23
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    Try this (just did myself and it worked for me):

    1. Go to your GV inbox.
    2. Find and click the Gear icon (should be near the top right below your name).
    3. First tab is labeled "Phones", ensure that the "forwards calls to" box for Google Chat is clicked (with associated Gmail account).

    I had my wife call me and it went to my phone. Then I did those steps I just mentioned and had her try again- it was routed to my laptop. It even rang while I had my availability for chat as "invisible".

    Mind you, I also had Gmail up waiting for the incoming call(s) and that may have influenced my results a bit.

    From what I gather, Windows 8 doesn't allow for Google Apps to be supported natively, so I'm going to have to either keep Gmail opened as a pinned tab or see if the Google Voice extension in my browser (Comodo Dragon is the primary; also on Firefox and Chrome) will be sufficient.
    Did the app ring? Or was it your actual phone?
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

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  24. #24
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
    Did the app ring? Or was it your actual phone?
    Once you check the Google Chat box in the GV settings, calls are routed to your browser. Or it routed them to my browser on my laptop- my cheap tablet w/Android 4.0 crapped out a few weeks back and I don't know if I could replicate the results I've seen with the laptop.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  25. #25
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    I gave my Google number to a dentist office today while setting up an appointment. They called it while I was away from the house and I had an email alerting me to a Voice Mail. I got to figure out how to set up VM now...
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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