Obi200

Review: OBi200 FREE Home Phone Calls

After you cancel cable TV your home phone may be what you want to cut next. While many may not have had a home phone in years, others find home phone a necessary need whether that is for a home office or a long list of needs.

The good news is there are many great options available for home phone including the Obi200. With the Obi200 you can turn your free Google Voice account into a physical phone to receive and make calls.

Here is our hands-on review of the Obi200.

Note: If you need more than one home phone, check out the Obi202. It is just like the Obi200 but adds a second part to your phone system.

Highlights

911 Service

If you use Obi200 with Google Voice you will find 911 support is not there. 911 will be unable to see where you are calling from using Google Voice. This is an issue with Google Voice not the Obi200. There are other VOIP services that you can use with the Obi200 to get 911 support, but they cost money every month.

So just keep in mind that 911 support will be lacking.

Final Thoughts

Set up was easy and only took five minutes. The quality of the calls is great, and it works just like your home phone does now. If you need a fax line or just want a home phone, the Obi200 is a great option. The downside is lack of 911 support if you use it with Google Voice.

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15 Responses to Review: OBi200 FREE Home Phone Calls

  1. David Mote January 20, 2018 at 1:51 pm #

    I have the Obi202, works great! Device paid for itself in months and now calls are free.

  2. Marvin Carter January 20, 2018 at 2:09 pm #

    You can also port your old number over but may take some additional steps to complete the port.

  3. swkerr January 20, 2018 at 2:13 pm #

    Replaced the Obi with Ooma when I got rid of my home phone. There is no way to port you Home phone number to Google Voice. There are other paid services that work with the Obi but none seemed at offer what the Ooma does for the price.

    I used the Obi with Google Voice for years but google did not officially support it and there were periods of time where it did not work. I the last months of use it was not a problem but would still be a concern if it was a critical service to you.

    I actually used the Obi for a time to ring my cell at the house but Google’s Project Fi stopped working with the Obi service after more than a year without problems after I ported the number from Google Voice. I simply added a line to the Obi because you can’t forward a Project Fi number to a Google Voice number for some reason.

    Final Verdict is Obi and Google Voice worked but was far from 100% reliable in my years with the service.

    • Kirk January 20, 2018 at 2:21 pm #

      I have used Obi and Google Voice for years with very few issues. We have saved hundreds!

      I really wanted to keep our home phone number. While it is true that you cannot port a landline number directly to Google Voice, you CAN port it to another mobile carrier and then port it to Google Voice. In my case, I bought an AT&T Go Phone and minutes card for a total of $20. It adds a couple of days to the process, but it really wasn’t difficult and now I’ll never have to worry about it again.

    • Tom42 January 20, 2018 at 5:20 pm #

      I bought a 10 dollar prepaided cell, transferred home phone to it, then transferred to google voice. I also pay $1.50 per month for 911 from callcentric.com

      Here is the guide I used, it goes over 911 and getting caller ID working right
      https://www.obitalk.com/forum/index.php?topic=3640.0

    • SanityChecker January 21, 2018 at 7:42 am #

      I used to have Ooma and it too often had voice delays, like almost a second at times and you and other end would talk on top of each other. Not an issue with Obitalk and Google Voice. And Obitalk has all kinds of power users settings for those who want to delve into it. Though the latency may depend on where you leave for each service. My bet is that Google Voice has many more voice server locations than Ooma, so best avg latency, meaning less voice delays.

  4. SanityChecker January 20, 2018 at 4:00 pm #

    There is a way to do 911 with Google Voice by adding an extra service for a few bucks a month. It’s available from the Obi setup page.

  5. Sean Berends January 20, 2018 at 4:01 pm #

    If you’ve had a landline in the past and still get a dial tone, you may still be able to dial 911 from it. Many states require this even after disconnection.

    • Mike Thaler January 21, 2018 at 1:04 pm #

      You are saying some states require landline type phones? (Or some equivalent service.) I doubt that. In the years before cell phones, there were always people w.o. landlines – especially in poor areas.
      Since half the population now just has cell phones – how could a state ever enforce such a law? We have 2 homes. We don’t change phone numbers each time we move from one to the other.

  6. charles perry January 20, 2018 at 5:28 pm #

    You shouldn’t have to pay to port your old number nor should you lose access to 911. For those and so many other reasons, I went with Basic Talk. Yes, it costs $12 a month, but consider that [a] you will always have to pay about $4 a month to state and local regardless and [b] $12 is still cheaper than the phone or cable companies charge and you still get reliable service.

    • Teddy G January 20, 2018 at 8:06 pm #

      No state and local taxes with Obihai + Google Voice. The E911 service is now obligatory for VOIP and cost are as low as $12 per year or 1.50 per month.

  7. JimmyHoffaHendrix January 20, 2018 at 7:50 pm #

    Cut my phone and been using obi200 and google voice for over a year. No issues at all. I did a double port as voice would not let me port from my isp. I ported to tmobile and then google voice.

  8. Cindy Tomamichel January 21, 2018 at 9:07 am #

    I have the Obi 200 and it works great. You CAN get 911 service through Anveao when you sign up for Google voice. It’s offered when you sign up and it’s $25 year. A lot cheaper than any other service out there.

  9. southhendo January 21, 2018 at 9:20 am #

    Great product. I’ve had an Obi device for years. I’ve used it with Google Voice, as well as VoIP providers Phone Power and Anveo (currently). People are more familiar with products such as Ooma, but this is better (and I’ve used Ooma), and it’s cheaper.

  10. Brian Heath January 22, 2018 at 12:41 pm #

    How is the caller ID using OBI and Google Voice? We’re currently using MagicJack which has been fine overall. But caller ID just comes through as a number. No names show up other than those we might have programmed in the handsets.