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Number, Please.

OBi100I have a new toy. It's an internet phone device called the Obi100, made my Obihai Technologies. Coupled with the magic of Google Voice it offers the promise of a home phone for little more than the cost of the device itself. (In this case, about $40)

I've been playing with one the past couple of days and the voice quality is very good and the latency is almost nonexistent. You'd be hard-pressed to tell this was VOIP, and that's even with the relatively modest speed of my internet connection (5 Mbps, on a good day.) On Amazon the reviews for the Obihai is as universally positive as anything I've ever seen. Four-and-a-half stars, and that's after almost 1600 reviews. These reviews were pretty much why I bought one.

The only continuing cost to use this phone is if you need 911 service (911 nd VOIP are apparently strange bedfellows) but that costs only a buck a month. Cheap.

I still have a land line but I've been considering dropping it and going cell phone full time. However, with a little technical wizardry I can port my current land line number to the Obihai, keep the benefit of two phone lines, and stop dropping $45 a month in AT&T's greedy little pockets.

In case you're wondering why I'm bothering, I use AT&T's DSL but they've almost tripled the cost of my internet service over the past couple of years, with no increase in speed. I suspect this is their clever way of driving me into the arms of U-verse (which would be no faster than DSL) but the associated phone service is VOIP. I figger since I'm doomed to go cable anyway (little birdies tell me that DSL is being phased out as quickly as possible in my area) I may as well do it on my own, albeit limited, terms.

I'll keep you posted.


end rant

Let's compare ISP cost per Mb.
isp cost comparison
(Click image for larger version.)

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