AT&T Wireless Home Phone

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AT&T has gotten in the cell phone to the house business too.
AT&T Wireless Home Phone

The cost is $20/month, but you can add the service to an existing AT&T cell contract for $10/mo.

The interface box is $100, but is free with a 2 year commitment.

What it is:
You can replace you existing wired home phone with this service. Service is through the cell network, so the phone company doesn't have to maintain expensive copper lines; and they pass the savings on to you. Well, a small fraction of the savings. They take the rest.

Your existing home phones plug into the interface unit you get, so there's little change. You get all the usual cell phone features like caller ID, voice mail, call waiting, etc. Also unlimited calling within the US.

It's the same as this Straight Talk thread describes. they charge $15/mo, but don't have the option for the free box.

I realize it's not for everyone, but I'm trying to save my parents some $ off their existing phone that costs about $30/mo. + .26/min for long distance without making things complicated.

Edit: I just noticed that they hit you with a $36 fee for you to purchase something from them. They call it an "activation fee".

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AT&T Wireless HOme Phone
Thanks Pauldow
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Most Recent Posts
I would recommend you test this yourself to really know. Someone on the Internet cannot tell you if something like this... (more)

gremln007 (Mar. 25, 2013 @ 9:37p) |

this att home wireless is interesting (vs $41.00 for my analog line). Can I use my existing handsets with this ? I do no... (more)

vichu (Mar. 26, 2013 @ 5:11p) |

Yes, you can use all existing phones with it. What I did is unhooked the test jack in my NID (grey phone company box ou... (more)

acadiel (May. 24, 2013 @ 10:27p) |

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Veizon sells soemthing like this as well and recently in a local GA store they were offering their device for $99 and no activation fees so it may pay to shop around. Also -- if AT&T cell service sucks at your location you can bet the home service will too.

Sounds good but what if you need fax compatiblities

From what I've been reading, cell phone signals are compressed using a loss method to optimize the number of voice channels. Kinda like MP3 music that is compressed, but you don't hear much loss from the original uncompressed version. Data needs all the bits of a lossless compression method, so it doesn't look like this would work for you.

Hope it works for small business.

The Straight Talk version runs on the Verizon cellular network, with no contact.

I've got an Obi100 ($29 - one time charge) and Google voice (free) that does the same thing. I feed the Obi into my phone jack and all the jacks in my house now have phone service.

Does anyone know if you can plug in more than one phone?

mydogsassy said:   Does anyone know if you can plug in more than one phone?

I think you can go up to two. Beyond that, the box doesn't have enough electric current to support it. The best way is to plug in a wireless base and use you wireless phone around the house.

Caller ID only or CID with name?

miqie said:   I've got an Obi100 ($29 - one time charge) and Google voice (free) that does the same thing.OBI100 is a different technology. That runs the call through the internet (VOIP) These devices run through the cell phone networks. You still need a broadband connection to run Obi100. You don't with these wireless to home devices. Personally, I'm using Ooma for phone service. Some people don't have high speed internet service.

To answer mydogsassy, yes the device plugs in anywhere along your phone lines in the home to run them all. (Unless you have dozens of phones!)

Here's a link to the Verizon offering
http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/store/controller?item=phoneFi...

Although StraightTalk does seem to be a better value than going through Verizon, if you have an existing plan with them it may make sense to keep one less account.

In the case I'm looking at, there's an AT&T tower about 3/4 miles away, so that's a factor. All the negative commentsabout Verizon's service point to low signal strength, along with not understanding the data incompatibility.

One other point I just saw is that if you change to this service from a wired service, your number then becomes a cell phone number. Therefore, the default is that you will not be listed in telephone directories.

I you already have internet service, why not go with an Obi100 for $29 and not pay anything more? Or a Linksys PAP2 or, or, or.. In other words, pay $29 ONE TIME and be done with it..

vadeltachi said:   Caller ID only or CID with name?

CID only, no name.

Bizatch said:   I you already have internet service, why not go with an Obi100 for $29 and not pay anything more? Or a Linksys PAP2 or, or, or.. In other words, pay $29 ONE TIME and be done with it..What happens if (or when?) google voice is no longer free?

oldq45 said:   vadeltachi said:   Caller ID only or CID with name?

CID only, no name.
That's what I thought. Not as big a deal as it once was as more and more calls every day are from wireless devices, and I don't get the name with most of those. I think Sprint may send the name with the number...

Why would anyone do this?

Does any of these, ATT or Verizon wireless, Obi100, Linksys or Ooma allow to keep my home phone number?

"What happens if (or when?) google voice is no longer free?"

This is April now, so you still have 8 months to use Google voice for free. This compensates the cost to buy the $30 Obihai box. After that:
- You have 50% chance to have Google voice free again in 2014.
-If Google Voice starts to charge you, their price has to be at least equal - more likely to be less- with the available competitors' price, in order to retain the users. In the case that Google voice cost is too high, you can always bring your Google voice number to different VOIP providers and can still use your existing Obihai 100 box.

Of course this works if you already have available broadband. Most people have cellphone now. So in case your broadband goes down, you can still use your cell to make calls. I like Google Voice because: 1- I have a total control of the calls: Filter and block numbers. Reroute the calls to different numbers... 2- It is free for now.

oldjunk said:   Sounds good but what if you need fax compatiblities

For most people there are other options that work just fine. There are both free and pay services that allow you to fax online with no phone line at all.

mydogsassy said:   Does anyone know if you can plug in more than one phone?

I've never used this particular adapter, but I've wired many houses using various VOIP devices and never had a single one not work. Just disconnect the wires out at the box that comes in from the phone line (the side marked "customer" or "internal") and run a cable from this box to any phone jack in the house. At that point, all the jacks in the house should be hot.

miqie said:   I've got an Obi100 ($29 - one time charge) and Google voice (free) that does the same thing. I feed the Obi into my phone jack and all the jacks in my house now have phone service.This. I choose the Obi202 since I wanted to pass through a physical Ethernet. The 202 operates as a single port router by default, but may be set to bridge mode as well. Quality of voice has been great. If you want 911, a low cost subscription to one of the supported services would be needed.

My phone was basic without long distance before this. After the ridiculous fee and tax additions, that $23 line came to $38 a month. Two months to payback with a 202, less then one with that 100.

oldjunk said:   Sounds good but what if you need fax compatiblities

If you have internet. Internet FAX services are an option.

vadeltachi said:   What happens if (or when?) google voice is no longer free?Change is gonna come, until then, save and save big by booting the phone company's high cost options! The sooner you switch, the more you will save and that is in today's dollars.

Ooma is my third voip. Very happy after two years: no echo, dropped calls, or spam (except from politicans). Useful features, and yss, you can keep your old home phone number, in most cases. But there's a fee to transfer.

drodge said:   I've never used this particular adapter, but I've wired many houses using various VOIP devices and never had a single one not work. Just disconnect the wires out at the box that comes in from the phone line (the side marked "customer" or "internal") and run a cable from this box to any phone jack in the house. At that point, all the jacks in the house should be hot.It gets a little more complicated if you receive data over your phone line (DSL here). That requires a slight rewiring to disconnect the service line from the jacks throughout the home. The patch panel connection can be reconfigured to split the service, connecting it to only the VOIP and the main IP router. The home wiring would then be isolated from those and get its connectivity via the VOIP device as you described, either by existing jack or just connecting that to the patch panel's newly isolated section with all the home jacks. A practical side effect of this is that it tends to co-locate the router and VOIP devices near the phone patch panel. Working with that patch panel isn't much fun without the right tools so I have yet to do this and will likely just switch from wired phones to a wireless setup.

Green; thanks for the OP.

This is a way for many to save significant sums, especially when abandoning land lines. Hundreds a year is not an uncommon savings. FW game on!

itsausername said:   drodge said:   I've never used this particular adapter, but I've wired many houses using various VOIP devices and never had a single one not work. Just disconnect the wires out at the box that comes in from the phone line (the side marked "customer" or "internal") and run a cable from this box to any phone jack in the house. At that point, all the jacks in the house should be hot.It gets a little more complicated if you receive data over your phone line (DSL here). That requires a slight rewiring to disconnect the service line from the jacks throughout the home. The patch panel connection can be reconfigured to split the service, connecting it to only the VOIP and the main IP router. The home wiring would then be isolated from those and get its connectivity via the VOIP device as you described, either by existing jack or just connecting that to the patch panel's newly isolated section with all the home jacks. A practical side effect of this is that it tends to co-locate the router and VOIP devices near the phone patch panel. Working with that patch panel isn't much fun without the right tools so I have yet to do this and will likely just switch from wired phones to a wireless setup.

Actually, not even that hard, all you need to do is change the wire that goes to the phone, into the a house jack and connect your normal phones into another jack. That is it. But I don't know why would you even get this service with so many other options that are cheaper. I had T-Mobile at home, just like AT&T, they charge you $10 plus taxes, which come around $14.xx. So I shitched my line to the new Magicjack, which was $70 per year or $5.83 per month. Very happy with Magicjack, but since I got triplay from TWC four months ago and Magicjack was up for renewal. I just ported my number on to Google Voice for $20 for life and forward my calls to my TWC service phone for free. I didn't want to port my number to TWC just in case I get away from them. If that happens, I can just go back to Magicjack for six years, which would be $170, or $2.36 per month.

pinkymeow said:   Does any of these, ATT or Verizon wireless, Obi100, Linksys or Ooma allow to keep my home phone number?

I have Ooma and I transferred my my home phone from Comcast. It took around 1 week or so and the process was painless. I am in PA and I pay $3.76 per month for having a home phone. It works. Now all I have is HSI from comcast, which drives Ooma.

OOMA!

cyfan said:   Why would anyone do this?


i can't get dsl or cable. Landline phone is $70 a month and this is so much cheaper?

Are there any home phone companies that will work when the power goes out?? I am sick of the high cost of ATT, but I live in hurricane alley.. Folks were without power for weeks after the last three storms.

Retailnever said:   Are there any home phone companies that will work when the power goes out?? I am sick of the high cost of ATT, but I live in hurricane alley.. Folks were without power for weeks after the last three storms.

Some of these units have built in batteries, but they only last a few hours. (For example, Straight Talk's has "2 hours talk-time and up to 36 hours stand-by time")

how good is the reception in rural areas where cell phones are good to pick up some times ??

If the power is out, odds are your high speed internet will be too. You can use an UPS to power the modem and VOIP adapter, but it will only last so long. Cellular tends to be the best option that situation because the towers generally have generators. Still, your service will only last as long as your batteries.

This is my problem with VOIP. My power goes our often; 4-5 times a year. In bad weather it has been down 10-12 hours. As well, sometimes the cable internet crashed too. This might be a better option, especially if the AT&T box is 12v.

This is my problem with VOIP. My power goes our often; 4-5 times a year. In bad weather it has been down 10-12 hours. As well, sometimes the cable internet crashed too. This might be a better option, especially if the AT&T box is 12v.

I really think I am going to do this, but the website says it won't work with alarms. But, the guy at the AT&T store said it will work with alarms.

Anyone?

Oh, and to correct the OP - the $10 add-on will pull from the shared minutes in a package.

oldjunk said:   Sounds good but what if you need fax compatiblities
Ooma

Jeff36 said:   I really think I am going to do this, but the website says it won't work with alarms. But, the guy at the AT&T store said it will work with alarms.

Anyone?

Oh, and to correct the OP - the $10 add-on will pull from the shared minutes in a package.


Every alarm company on the planet says that, 2 reasons. First, they would rather sell you an expensive cellular monitoring plan for more profit. Second, they can't be 100% sure that every VOIP service will support the alarm protocols 100% of the time and they are covering their butt. In reality, most work just fine most of the time. This is just like faxing, which also works most of the time even thought the providers say it won't. That being said, is an alarm system something you are pretty sure might work when you need it?

Skipping 20 Messages...
vichu said:   this att home wireless is interesting (vs $41.00 for my analog line). Can I use my existing handsets with this ? I do not fax or anything fancy but features like call waiting, voice mail etc are a must. I live in the bay area and have ATT wireless and probably can take advantage of the 9.99 deal family plan.
also, I see the 520 ATT wireless boxes available in eBay for $50.00 or so. If I have these, do I still need a contract with ATT?

thanks


Yes, you can use all existing phones with it. What I did is unhooked the test jack in my NID (grey phone company box outside), which disconnected the phone company's wiring from my inside wiring. I then just plugged this into my household phone jacks, and it made them all live with the AT&T device. It does have voice mail, call waiting, etc. Just no caller ID name, only number as a previous poster said.

You can buy the unit for $129 or something like that, I believe and have no contract, or get it for free with a 2 year contract. My $19.99 a month is around $24 and change after taxes. I don't have it on a family plan; I have it all by itself (it's the only thing I pay for from AT&T).

I had the Verizon Home phone connect, and the AT&T version is awesome when it comes to voice quality compared to the Verizon (CDMA) model. That's why I switched to the AT&T one. I'm guessing the Sprint version probably sounds somewhat garbled like the Verizon one, but I haven't tried it.



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