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Author Topic: Can an Obi 202 be programmed to do selective call forwarding?  (Read 2020 times)
lostinqueens
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« on: August 10, 2017, 06:26:18 am »

I may be overthinking this problem but here's what I'm trying to solve. I have an Obi 202 with Phone Power on SP1 and Google Voice on SP2. My cell phone is set to forward unanswered calls to my Google Voice number so that I can use Google Voice for voice mail.

My PP number is my primary number. If I'm away, I forward my PP number to my cell number. If I don't answer my cell phone, the call gets forwarded to my Google Voice number which goes back to my Obi device and then gets forwarded to my cell number again. It's a vicious cycle.

I solved this problem by setting my Google Voice number to "Do Not Disturb". This works fine but then I can't receive incoming calls from Google Voice on my Obi.

What I want to do is be able to forward calls from PP on SP1 to my cell phone, then have my cell phone forward unanswered calls to my Google Voice number but have the Obi not forward the call again without having my Google Voice set to "Do Not Disturb".

I might be overthinking this problem.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
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azrobert
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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2017, 07:33:35 am »

Get a 2nd GV number used only for VM. Set GV#2 to DND. Forward unanswered cell calls to GV#2.
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lostinqueens
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« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2017, 10:21:52 am »

Thanks for the advice. I think this would be a great solution if I could selectively set only one GV number to DND. If both GV numbers are under the same Google account, I don't think this is possible. If I need two Google accounts to have two GV numbers then I'm left managing two different Google accounts, which isn't ideal.

Is there a way to set only one GV number to DND if both GV numbers are associated with the same Google account?
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2017, 11:30:35 am »

No, you can't do that with Google Voice.

As for "overthinking", you've actually created a more complex and cumbersome solution than is necessary.

Google Voice is designed to be your inbound, single point of contact number.  You then forward your inbound Google Voice number to up to six 10-digit US phone numbers, plus to Google Chat/XMPP, and to any Google Hangouts clients that are logged into your account and set to ring on inbound calls.  OBi devices act as Chat Clients, so the OBi is intended to be a forwarding destination, not the opposite.

The way you should be using things is:
  • Give out your GV number as your primary number,  not your PP number.  If that bothers you, you can (indirectly) port your PP number over to Google Voice, so you can still use it as the primary point of contact.
  • Forward your GV number to your cell phone number, which is what GV is designed to do.
  • Forward your GV number to your PP number.
  • Use your GV voicemail as your one and only voicemail system.  To accomplish this, set the PP number to ring for 30 seconds or longer before going to its own VM.
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lostinqueens
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Posts: 8


« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2017, 05:00:24 pm »

This solution would work great for me but I have one concern. If someone calls me directly on my cell number, I don't think the set up would allow GV to take the voice mail message. Is this correct? Would I then be dependent on my cell provider's voice mail system?

Thanks again for your help.
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2017, 05:59:27 pm »

Yes, one of the main functions of Google Voice, is to be the voicemail system for your cell phone.  To make this work, there needs to be a way for unanswered or busy calls to be automatically forwarded back to your Google Voice phone number.

This is accomplished in one of two ways: 

If your cell phone service provider (carrier) supports Conditional Call Forwarding (also known as no-answer/busy transfer), then all you need to do is to enable the feature on your cell phone.  This is done either by entering star (*) codes on your phone's keypad, or by using your carrier's customer web portal.  Each carrier does it differently; if you tell me your carrier, I can probably help you.

If your carrier doesn't support CCF, then the workaround is to enable Google Voice's call screening feature.  When call screening is active, whoever or whatever answers a call to your inbound GV number will need to press "1" to accept the call, or to press "2" to send it immediately to voicemail.  If nothing is pressed, GV gives up after about 25 seconds, and takes the message.  Since your cell phone carrier's own VM system isn't human, it can't press 1, so the call will go to GV VM.  Note:  this will only help prevent the cell phone's VM from grabbing the message if the call is made to your GV inbound number and then forwarded to the cell phone.  It won't help when calls are made directly to your cell phone, since Google Voice isn't screening those calls first.

Most third-party MVNO service providers (e.g. most of America Movil's brands like TracFone, Net10, Straight Talk, etc.), and most of the discount subsidiaries of the big four carriers don't support CCF.  All of the big four do support it.

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lostinqueens
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« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2017, 06:38:36 pm »

Understood. I currently use GV for my (Verizon) cell phone voicemail. My concern is that if my GV number rings on my Obi and forwards to my cell number and then my cell number forwards the number back to GV using a star code, then I'll end up in an endless loop. In your earlier e-mail it sounded like I should set up my GV number to ring my cell number and my PP number.

This is why my PP number currently forwards to my cell number when I'm not in my office. My cell number then forwards to my GV number for voice mail. (If I'm in the office, my PP voice mail deals with the message but I'd prefer GV for this as well.) The issue is that if I don't have my GV number on DND then I end up in an endless loop. This is why I was originally looking for selective call forwarding. If my PP number sends to my cell number and then the cell number sends to GV if I don't answer, I want GV to pick up the phone. The only way I can see to do this is to have GV set to DND, but then my GV number won't ring on my Obi.
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SteveInWA
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« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2017, 07:09:04 pm »

I tried to explain how GV works in my first reply.  Let me try again, specifically with regard to OBi and VZW use.

OBi devices are simply one of the forwarding destinations for your GV inbound phone number.  GV treats it the same as any other forwarding destinations (cell phone, land line number, or Hangouts clients).  It will simultaneously ring all the destinations.  So, both your OBi attached telephone and your cell phone will ring at the same time, and you can answer either one.  If you set up CCF on your VZW number, and you don't answer the forwarded call on your VZW phone, then GV VM will take the message.  The OBi, being just another forwarding destination, won't have any impact on this.  The OBi isn't doing the forwarding; Google Voice is.  Don't set any rules on the OBi to forward these calls.  Let GV do that.  Think of the OBi (Chat client) and your VZW number as equal peers -- not one chained to the other.

I can't speak to how, exactly, things will work if you forward your PP number to your cell phone number
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