Be sure to read all the way to the bottom because there’s a GIVEAWAY!!! A few weeks ago my wife told me about an experience our son had at summer camp. He is eight years old and he obviously is catching the eyes of the female campers around him. Our boy doesn’t have a cell phone or even a smart home phone of his very own. I mean he’s only 8! So at camp… Before my wife picked him up a girl approached him and put a folded piece of paper in his pocket with her phone number on it. He was slightly surprised and a little embarrassed to tell us about it. I’m pretty sure that he is not interested at this age to actually call her but if he was to want to or heaven forbid a girl wanted to call him I don’t want to get him a cell phone yet and he doesn’t need to give out my or my wife’s cell number. This is just one of the many reasons we have kept our home phone service. It doesn’t get used too much but as these children get older it will hopefully keep them from wanting a cell phone….like ever…I know wishful thinking, right. A landline will allow them to communicate with friends and stay in touch with family members in other cities. We will just have to tell them that we have a smart home phone and call it good.
What is this smart home phone that I speak of?
As technology has advanced alternatives to the conventional landline phone have arrived and are much cheaper. Ooma is a device that utilizes your internet connection for your landline phone creating an entirely internet phone service. It also does so much more as I found out when I activated our new Ooma Telo. It’s a smart home phone and as a bonus all the extra fees that the regular phone company charges will soon be a distant memory.
The Ooma arrived and was extremely easy to set up and I noted that it had built in voice mail capabilities. I opened the box and the directions were very easy to follow. Here is a summary of the steps and it took only about 10 minutes.
- Open the box
- Go to the Ooma website
- Register the device
- Pick a phone number or decide to use your current number (more on that later)
- Answer a few questions regarding set up (also more on that later)
- Plug the Ooma in the router and phone into the Ooma and your ready to go
When setting up the phone I picked a temporary number for set up purposes. After than I determined that it would be best to keep our same number as that is what the little ones have it memorized and it would just be too challenging to have them memorize a new number. Therefore I decided to port our number. I filled out a form on the Ooma website and in a few short weeks Ooma change our temporary number and then I will disconnect from the phone company and all the extra fees that come along with them. I will mention that porting the phone number does come with a one time fee of $39.99. Also while setting up the Ooma discovered some added features listed below:
- Certain phone calls can be sent straight to voice mail such as blocked numbers
- If someone calls 911 it will email me and text my cell phone that this happened
- As it is connected to the internet voice mails can be accessed by any computer
Can you imagine? A home phone that actually BLOCKS unwanted calls! I cannot tell you how many of those calls we get a day on our old landline.
In addition to all of the above there are many other features that I have yet to explore such as Ooma can work together with the Amazon Echo. Ooma meet Alexa, let’s see what happens. Our phone just got smarter!
Overall I was impressed with the ease of use and the features that are free with the device. I failed to mention the clarity of the signal. When using our landline in the past there was always popping and crackling which is just not present with Ooma. The sound quality is great and that is an endorsement you can count on coming from someone who deals with hearing and sound all day everyday as an audiologist.
Now I can rest assured that if my son wants to call that girl he has access to our smart home phone. I am just not sure she will want to talk about Star Wars, American Ninja Warrior, Battlebots or Pokémon but I’ll let him figure that one out.
Get smarter. Get yourself your very own smart home phone.
One very lucky winner will receive a dandy prize pack from Ooma Telo. The prize includes: An Ooma Telo, 1 year of Premier Service, a Nest Protect smoke and carbon monoxide detector, Nest Thermostat and one LIFX smart light bulb. Total prize valued at $628.00. To enter to win just go to the Ooma Telo page HERE and then use the calculator to determine what YOU could save on your monthly phone bills in 3 years as well as how long it will take (in months) for Ooma to pay for itself. Then, leave the answers as a blog comment below by July 18, 2016. Be sure to leave your email address next to your answer so we can contact you if you are the winner!
Giveaway open to U.S. residents only, 18 years of age or older.
Disclosure: We received the Ooma Telo for the purpose of conducting this review. This posting also contains affiliate links which means that we earn a percentage of clicks made to the Ooma site but all opinions are strictly our own.