I like to save money just like anyone else but while cutting out the extras is always a possibility sometimes it would be nice to save on the essentials. Often times though this just isn’t an option. The electric company, phone company and cable companies usually don’t have much competition. Years ago there was no competition with phone companies in our area. Then cable came along and offered phone service and internet at a better rate. Competition within the industry did eventually prices down but ultimately the price war stagnated and if you check now you’ll often fine both cable and phone prices for telephone service to be nearly identical. End of competition eh? Nope, now a newer technology has entered the arena to toss things up again.
I heard about Ooma near the end of 2010, this service provides free or nearly free phone service after a one time purchase of their equipment. It works with your existing high speed internet service and provides free calling throughout the United States. The only cost you’ll have is for taxes and fees typical for telephone services each month.
One of the first things that stood out for me was the fact that the system would permit you to use your existing phone. It wasn’t necessary to buy any additional handsets to use this service.
The other obvious benefit was that those you call do not have to have the same equipment to receive your calls.
As for the quality of the sound, Ooma set industry standards in 2010 being the first VoIP home phone service to offer HD Voice, delivering rich, crystal clear sounding calls.
Being a graphic designer I will confess I loved the look of the Ooma Telo, it’s sleek curves and modern styling is something you won’t mind having on your table top or desk…it’s very cool.
The service is easy to set up and if you do have any difficulties not covered in the directions – call tech support, they are friendly and will have you up and running in no time. In most cases you’ll be making calls within 15 minutes of connecting the equipment.
It’s important to note that this isn’t just a stripped down alternative to a regular telephone. Ooma’s features include: caller ID and call waiting at no extra charge and you can access your voicemail from the web. I was surprised and pleased to see that you can actually keep your current phone.
Ooma offers a premier service for $119 a year that has all kinds of “super powers” for your phone. If you have a Telo and Ooma Premier you can link your mobile phone to your Ooma Telo using the Ooma Bluetooth adapter. Voicemail notification will email you when you have new messages, and voicemail forwarding are both pretty useful for people traveling or away from home a lot
One other service stuck out to me as interesting: Personal Blacklist. This feature enables you to block calls from certain callers or send them directly to voicemail….can you say “goodbye” telemarketers?
If you have the chance I’d encourage you to check out Ooma. There website is found at: http://www.ooma.com/. If you’re like me you like to read reviews on products before you purchase them. Many times I’ll stop by Amazon.com to see what customers have had to say. You’ll find the Ooma Telo on there with some outstanding feedback.
Look out phone and cable companies – Ooma just raised the bar on quality home phone service.