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Author Topic: Amazon Echo  (Read 3092 times)
Lavarock7
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« on: September 30, 2017, 10:45:31 am »

Amazon announced that the Echo device can now make outbound calls for free to the US, Canada and Mexico. To receive calls from regular calls, you need to buy a $35 connect box.

Is that box an Obi product?

https://www.theverge.com/circuitbreaker/2017/9/29/16387398/amazon-echo-free-voice-calls-us-canada-mexico
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2017, 04:25:50 pm »

That was a somewhat puzzling announcement, as I would think that the market for this is small and getting smaller.

The device is a modified Grandstream HT800 series ATA.  It looks like they're only using its FXO port to turn it into a landline gateway.  The concept is:  someone calls your landline number (e.g. POTS or some VoIP provider), and you've connected the box to that service via an RJ-11 cord.  The inbound call is then somehow bridged to your Echo device(s).  I guess it would be attractive to people who have landlines, and are too lazy to answer the call on a regular telephone handset or speakerphone, but it seems like a solution for a problem that doesn't need solving.

I successfully made a couple of calls to 10-digit numbers yesterday on one of my Echo Dots.  The call quality was quite good, although the Dot's tiny speaker is no comparison to a decent speakerphone.
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Lavarock7
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« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2017, 08:46:41 am »

The outbound calls worked fine for me on the orig echo and yes, it's a LOT like a speakerphone :-) However, a friend is buying a dot for a friend who is partially paralyzed and wants to maker calls out. Seems perfect for her.

My reason for mentioning this here was there was a mention of Google but I didn't read it carefully enough. I thought they implied it was using Google Voice.
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