Five years ago I switched from a traditional home phone line and bought a device called OOMA. It is a small box that you connect to your Internet router. Once set up and connected to the Internet, the device replaces costly home phone service. The cost of a landline is $15 to $30 monthly for most people, although in some areas it can be $50 or more. After purchasing the OOMA device (about $100), you get free service for life. The only thing I pay monthly is $4, which are the taxes and fees the government assesses on my service (yes, they even tax a free phone line).
With the explosion and availability of low cost cell phone plans, many have simply decided they don't need a home phone. In my own case, I work from home and need a landline. I also use it many times for radio talk show appearances. Even more, I believe that it is an important part of home security to have a landline with 911 location services. Whatever your reason, if you still have a need for a landline you should take a serious look at OOMA.
It seems counter intuitive, but the quality of OOMA is superior to any landline I have ever had. In fact, I have had talk show producers ask me what kind of phone I was on, and one even remarked that it was the best connection they have ever had with a guest by phone.
Can I Keep My Current Phone Number?
Yes you can keep the same number you have now. OOMA has a program that allows you to transfer your phone number to your new OOMA account.
What Kind Of Phones Do I Need?
A standard landline phone is all you need. There are a couple of ways you can configure your system for multiple extensions. One method is to set up OOMA utilizing your existing wall phone jacks. The way I did it was to purchase a wireless phone with two base units. I connected the main base unit to the OOMA and have that in my office. The other base unit is in my kitchen area. Since both of the phones are wireless, we can use them anywhere in the house or even on our patio. When I do a radio talk interview, I move the phone jack over to a hands free headset (this takes about 5 seconds to simply unplug from the wireless base and plug into to my headset unit). I want to make clear that the whole set up process will take you no longer than about 20 minutes (including establishing your online account with OOMA).
What Features Are Included?
As mentioned previously, OOMA works with 911 just like a landline (emergency service personnel know the address you are calling from), standard voicemail, caller ID, and call waiting. Also included is unlimited long distance calling in the United States. There are additional add-on services and upgrades, like International calling plans, etc...
Another Reason To 'Unbundle'
For those that have already begun implementing my strategy of dropping cable TV and replacing it with free Internet TV, canceling a landline provided by the cable company is one more way to save big. In fact, many people tell me that they are hesitant to disrupt their 'bundle' deal (e.g. Internet, Cable TV, and landline combined) with the cable company when making the switch to Internet TV. By making the decision to move to OOMA and cancel cable TV simultaneously, it will be a huge savings and a very easy decision to make. Yes, you still need to buy Internet service from your local provider, but doing so a la carte is the way to go.
Helping you make the most of God’s money!