OBi Phone Service $39.99/year

Started by azrobert, January 01, 2014, 07:09:39 AM

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gderf

You could trial obivoice.com free for 30 days/60 minutes. E911 is included. It's here today, unlike the OBihai offering. And it's $39.99/year with unlimited minutes.

The future OBihai plan is the same cost but they never said how many minutes you get.
Help me OBiHai PhoneOBi. You're my only hope.

RBBrittain

Quote from: gderf on January 17, 2014, 11:36:25 AM
You could trial obivoice.com free for 30 days/60 minutes. E911 is included. It's here today, unlike the OBihai offering. And it's $39.99/year with unlimited minutes.

The future OBihai plan is the same cost but they never said how many minutes you get.
One small problem:  Obivoice has NO phone numbers in my state, and they won't take my existing number.  :(  I could get a number in another state and have GV ring there, but would E911 work that way?

giqcass

Quote from: RBBrittain on January 17, 2014, 12:08:02 PM
Quote from: gderf on January 17, 2014, 11:36:25 AM
You could trial obivoice.com free for 30 days/60 minutes. E911 is included. It's here today, unlike the OBihai offering. And it's $39.99/year with unlimited minutes.

The future OBihai plan is the same cost but they never said how many minutes you get.
One small problem:  Obivoice has NO phone numbers in my state, and they won't take my existing number.  :(  I could get a number in another state and have GV ring there, but would E911 work that way?
E911 won't care what your phone number is when trying to locate you.  You enter your address into the system.  Many people use out of state numbers these days.  Obivoice can spoof the CID of your GV number so it appears the call is coming from there but I don't know if they spoof CID to E911.  It would be preferable if they don't but if they do it shouldn't cause any outbound issues.
Long live our new ObiLords!

Peter_R

I've minimal sophistication re: voip, and telephony in general.  Not enough so that I can parse all the earlier posts without a big time investment.  TIA for your indulgence.

A few months ago, I set up mom - 91 years and still wanting to more with her computer - using Google Voice and Obi100.  My motives were the voicemail integration with gmail, which she uses everyday, and eliminating/minimizing nuisance calls.  "Mission accomplished".

Uhh...with the GV announcement, not so fast...

At this point, I'm looking for a high level response, e.g. "yes that's right, it'll work" or "no you dumb***, it won't...but this will".  I'll worry about plumbing issues later.

My goal is to make whatever I do transparent to mom.  From the earlier posts, it would seem that I could continue to use GV for her inbound calls - hence the voicemail/gmail setup would continue to work.  I'd set the forwarding to the Obi phone service, which then rings the handset plugged in to the Obi100.  Outbound calls could be set to "spoof" (did I get the jargon right?) the CallerID so that her GV # would display.  So far, so good?  Did I also understand that I could configure the E911 to work with this setup?

Either way, one more question.  As before, high level response greatly preferred.  Keeping in mind the transparency-to-mom goal, are there other solutions that I should be looking at?  Are there sources on the 'net where I can educate myself about the topic?  (OK, two physical questions, but virtually one  :) )

To the folks at Obihai, I just think the Obi100 and the setup/integration tools nail what it takes for a fantastic experience.  Great job!

And to those of you who read and ponder this issue, and especially those who help this newb solve his quandary ... You're Awesome!!!  Thank you.






TheoGeek

Yup, you can still do something like that after GV "stops working" with products like the Obi, but it won't be free.  :)

What you'd do is get set up with someone like CallCentric, Obivoice, or some other VOIP provider that can get you a DID (a phone number for all intents and purposes) and a calling plan (on a per minute, per month, or per year rate, etc).  You then have GV forward calls to that DID and have the Obi registered with that provider.

I currently have Obivoice and they allow you to spoof outgoing Caller ID as long as you own the number (basically, they call it and have you enter a code). 

Forum gurus, correct me if I'm wrong, but I think most VOIP places will charge incoming minutes for calls forwarded from GV, right?

Anyway, it's not drop-in, but close.  You'll need to set up her Obi, and manage payment for the account you buy the DID from, but other than that, her number will be the same.

Cons to this approach that I encountered:
1)  I had a pretty noticeable lag when talking to others.  I'm not sure why, and others have reported no problems.  I had (OutsideWorld -> GV -> Callcentric -> my Obi) for incoming and (My Obi -> GV -> outside world) for outgoing.  I was always talking over people who called me and whom I called.  It got bad enough that the WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) went negative rather quickly.  :)  We switched to Obivoice for everything and now it's great.  Services like CallCentric and others offer different options based on your need, but they should be fine as well.

2)  The "timeout" if you will that determines when GV picks up for voicemail is not very configurable.  I had to set my physical answering machine to pick up after two rings to make GV not pick up (sometimes it would pick up after 3 rings, sometimes 2, sometimes 4, it was too inconsistent).  If you only want GV (and not a local answering machine as well) to pick up, this won't be an issue for you, and you can just disable the local answering machine.

Alternatively, you can port your GV number to a VOIP service that offers voicemail similar to GV, but if your grandmother is used to GV, that might be a non-starter.

Hope that helps.  If and when you decide to take the plunge, there are many people here who can help you out.

Later!
Jeff.

MikeHObi

Quote from: Peter_R on January 20, 2014, 06:04:55 PM
A few months ago, I set up mom - 91 years and still wanting to more with her computer - using Google Voice and Obi100.  My motives were the voicemail integration with gmail, which she uses everyday, and eliminating/minimizing nuisance calls.  "Mission accomplished".

Whatever you are currently doing for E911 you can continue to do.  I assume you are aware that Google voice does not provide 911 services.  It is very likely your E911 provider can also provide you the DID for incoming and outgoing calling.  You will need to take a look at your mom's usage and try to find the best value from the various service providers. The new OBI service (or services) will certainly work as well assuming it isn't something weird.  Most providers (and we assume the OBI service will as well) allow you to specific the CID number to display when making outgoing calls.  The only requirement is that is a valid number for you that they test by calling it.


Quote from: TheoGeek on January 20, 2014, 08:36:27 PM
Forum gurus, correct me if I'm wrong, but I think most VOIP places will charge incoming minutes for calls forwarded from GV, right?

That depends.   Some providers have unlimited incoming calling numbers that are free, and some have unlimited incoming calling plans so there are no minutes charged, just either free or a fixed monthly fee.  But yes, calls forwarded from GV are considered calls, and as such minutes are accumulated.  GV doesn't use SIP to place calls, it actually calls the number.
Obi202 user & Obi100 using Anveo and Callcentric.