Looking for success stories giving up landline POTS by integrating mobile phones to legacy telephones. The goal is to be able to receive calls from either of our cell phones which would ring on the legacy phones in the house (different ring tones would be a plus). Also we want to be able to use the legacy phones to place calls, but potentially limited to an emergency when the actual mobile phone isn't nearby.
Turns out our phones (Panasonic KX-TG7641 system) support Link2Cell for 2 cell phones using Bluetooth. So this could be exactly what we need. But in some experimenting, I find some issues. The Bluetooth doesn't cover our whole house, so the main phoneset needs to be more central. After moving that it might work. It also seems that an incoming call will wait for a prompt on the mobile phone to select output device. That kinda defeats the purpose as if I had to pick up my cell phone to select the phone system, I might as well just answer it there on the mobile device.
Have you made a similar conversion? What works well for you and what doesn't? This is one of those spousal acceptance factor issues.
It's not an answer to your question...
But if you'd like an economical option to keep your home number it might be of interest to look into switching it over to voip.ms and set it up to use for forwarding/voicemail.
Edit: Voip.ms setup
Porting is free.
DID is ~$0.85/mth, $0.40 setup fee.
Voicemail(to email) or custom message(s) = free.
Incoming calls are $0.01/min.
Have to start with minimum $15US Add Funds (account credit).
There's some sort of referral program as well($10?).
Recordings, play a simple message for people to hear when calling your number. Please note the call will disconnect after the recording has finished playing.
CallerID Filtering is a tool that let you create incoming routing rules according to incoming CallerID number. You can apply different rules to some or all of your DID(s) numbers. You can create as many filters as you want. Each filter you create can filter according to one the following criterias and change the routing if there's a match.
- Anonymous CallerID
- Invalid North American CallerID (NPANXXXXXX)
- Custom CallerID Number of your choice
Some usage scenarios
An annoying telemarketing firm has been calling your number. You can block that specific number and configure your filter to play the following recording to this CallerID "That number is no longer in service, please hang-up and try again" followed by a busy tone.
Your business DID is configured to route to your receptionist SIP phone. You would like to receive the calls directly on your Cell Phone when the CallerID matches one of your important client. Simply create a forwarding entry with your cellphone, then create a CallerID Filtering rule with the CallerID of your client and select your Cell Phone forwarding entry as the routing.
You have a local number with the 514 area code and do not want Callers from this area code to dial your toll-free number. When this happens and you want to playback a message to those callers indicating the local number, you can create a Filter with 514* and redirect routing to a pre-recorded message you have uploaded to the system.
Using Wildcard for pattern matching:
Some examples, for this example we'll assume CallerID Number is 5145550000:
5145550000, 514*, 514XXX0000, 514XXXXXXX and 514XXX00* are examples that would match CallerID 5145550000 while 514XXX7* and 514XXX are examples that would NOT match the CallerID.
I use a Cell2Tel. The Bluetooth covers our house well, but lately we are getting a lot of static, which could also be coming from our POTS system. It is a Uniden. I never actually used it, but my wife did because her phone is never with her in the house. She now has an Apple Watch, so she can answer calls on it, and it sounds way better than the POTS phones. Also, we didn't keep our land line, so no advise there.
I second this motion, been using voip.ms for the legacy landline home phone number for 10+ years, have a forwarding rule setup as well as voicemail. Mostly robocalls, but the occasional real call gets delivered to my mobile number via forwarding or voicemail-email.
I appreciate the suggestion. Our landline has been Ooma since 2010. Although we pay for call screening (so total monthly is about $17), my thought would be I could go back to the "free" version which is about $6/month in order to have a voicemail message to tell human callers what numbers to call. I don't want voicemail on that number; just an outgoing message. I'll look into the cheapest way to do that.
Okay, it's a little work, but totally free(outside of the Obi Adapter), and is great at blocking spam calls. Get an Obihai USB or Obi202box. Port your home number to google voice. Been doing this for 5 years, totally free, outside of the yearly E911 fee @4.99/year.
I think you might need to first port your home phone to a cheap cell service(this was the case 5+ years ago). There used to be a free cell service that I used to port my home number, but they went bankrupt(big surprise-right). There are many very cheap prepaid deals around if you can't find a free one to port your number
+1 on voip.ms. I've been using this service for more years than I can remember. I have never seen such a dynamic user portal. They have what I would consider a RM 5.0 that allows pretty much anything you can think of with incoming and outgoing calls.
I've had a lot of fun routing spam callers to the likes of the FBI, FTC, porn hotlines and any destination appropriate for an unwanted incoming call.
The cost is fractions of a penny for inbound and outbound calling.
Get google voice (free) then port your phone number to it. Then set google phone to forward all calls to your cell... Pretty much what I did years ago.
I am familiar with Google Voice having used it on my mobile number for many years. But as to the disposition of my landline number, the only thing I want to do with it is to give callers an outgoing message. I specifically don't want voicemail or forwarding to other numbers. That I can easily accomplish by leaving it on the "free" tier of Ooma although will look at voip.ms to see if it is cheaper. We'll give up the landline number after a year or so.
The part that I'm unfamiliar with is the practicality of linking two mobile phones to POTS phones using BlueTooth. It seems to work in limited testing but is finicky .. the caller's experience is that it takes quite a bit longer for the call to ring through to the POTS phones (maybe 6-8 seconds). Other little things like that.
For what it's worth, for years I have sent all incoming calls from callers not in contacts to voicemail. This has been the case on my Ooma line and both mobile phones. My mobile phones already have that functionality, so no additional call blocking is needed on any line.
Vonage will solve your problem. You get a small box that plugs into your router and any wireless phone or your house wiring for multiple phones. An app on your mobile phone(s) rings and allows you to answer calls coming in at the home number. You can also make outgoing calls using your home line via your mobile phone. Nice system for a home office setup.
I only keep my old landline number for spam call purposed. Almost no one gets my actual cell phone number. I mean what's the purpose of keeping the landline number beyond today? Just cut it and give the necessary places a number you want to give. In my eyes it seems like a waste of money. (I'm sure you have a reason) I'm just more of the pull the bandaid sort of guy lol
No one gets my actual mobile phone number either. In fact, I couldn't tell you what that number is without looking into it. The number I give to people is the GV number.
I want to keep the landline number I've had for 37 years to give an OGM just in case there are some human callers that I've failed to notify. This transition would be for about a year and costs next to nothing.
Let me try to refocus the conversation around my original question. My landline number is not really what I'm seeking experiences about. It is how to best utilize the POTS phones in my house to make sending/receiving calls on mobile more convenient. I know that my existing POTS phones can be linked via BT to both mobile phones. Has anyone that has done this found issues or had success?
I misunderstood your original question.
For the robot call i created a IVR with a message I recorded that says you'll join Carl by pressing 7 if you're not a robot.
Then real people have to press 7 and then the call is forwarded to my cell
I have been using Google Voice since it was early beta. I have ported all my phone numbers to GV, land lines, office numbers and mobile. I use a data sim in my phones. The numbers each have their own GMail account. The GV app on my phones , both Android and iOS, tablets, and computers can ring on any and all devices. I can choose whatever is handy when I walk out the door knowing it can receive all the calls. I use an OBi device that connects to cordless phones like your Panasonic. I don't want all the numbers on the OBi but I have the most important ones ring there.
Best part is, my monthly cell phone bill is $10 a month for a 2GB data sim. I can't remember what it costs for data over that but it is in keeping with the initial charge. GV directs calls over WiFi or data, whichever is available.
+1 for voip.ms. I've been using it with old old landline number for at least a decade. Very few spam call because I have all blocked caller ID numbers sent directly to their own mailbox, no solicitation and elections calls within memory. A separate mailbox for my wife and I. Dial 1 for Pat or 2 for Bill. I have it set for calls to me to forward to my cell where Google Voice handles the voicemail chores. The bill is a couple of bucks a month.
There a blog that is all about your topic:
I personally have raspberry pi with incrediblepbx on it, with 7phones thru house, with Vitelity service
I also used In another project obi202 with google voice.
Both solutions for free at the time of setup about 8 years ago.
There is not 911 emergency included.
Just a heads up. I will always keep a landline and a mobile for a simple reason.
When something really bad happens the mobile backhaul locks up tighter than a ducks butt and you can't get a line, because everyone is trying to call.
When something really bad happens it's a good idea to have more than one option. Most people only have one option because they haven't been taught to plan ahead, like no learner driver is taught to change a tyre or check oil.
My way of doing it? KEEP the landline. Even if you only keep it as an emergency backup for family and you don't give it out to others. Have smartphones on two or more different networks (and I mean main networks, not vampire leeches like GiffGaff). Why do I suggest this?
Something bad happens in your city, a natural disaster or the film Unstoppable with an unhappy ending. Your house is wrecked, vehicles are trashed, and you have a seriously injured kid. The landline is toast and the one cellphone network you're all using is locked up or dead. Kid dies because help doesn't arrive or arrives too late (and 25 minutes can be too late).
Same situation but you have a landline and phones on 3 maybe 4 different networks? So now you have 4 or 5 possible options.. The injured girls phone has a signal and you manage to get through, and a rig gets diverted to pick her up - a couple of units of blood, a vacuum bandage and some surgeries and she makes a full recovery, and will have an interesting story and maybe some aches and pains..
We assume that things will always work because 99.9% of the time they do. We'll always have a working landline, because landlines always work, we'll always have power, water, cellphone signal. But if something happens when those things fail, thats the kind of thing thats likely to cause serious harm to us fragile meatbags, so it'll be the time when being able to communicate can be a life or death situation. There are some rugged smartphones that have a walkie-talkie built into them, Ulefone do some, and they might be useful to have in certain circumstances and they're pretty indestructible...
Think a UPS for communications, its better for it to have and not need it, than need it and not have it.
There's not a strictly right or wrong answer here. You've obviously done a lot of thinking about this and have reached your own risk management solution that is appropriate for your circumstances.
The risk solution that I'm comfortable with is different, owing to different circumstances. Risk is mitigated by fewer humans dependent upon it in my house, the use of different mobile carrier towers for some level of redundancy, proximity and overlap of towers, history of availability through many ice storms and hurricanes over the years, etc.
In terms of actual landline, I cut that cord almost 30 years ago. My home phones have been VoIP since, first with Vonage and then with Ooma. I don't regret that but no longer see the need for two people to have three phone numbers, especially when the number of legitimate phone calls on the "landline" in one year can be counted on my fingers.
An update on my testing. I moved the base deskset of Panasonic phone system to be more centrally located for BlueTooth purposes. That helps a lot, but it bothers me that there is still a fringe area where the BT thinks it is connected but voice quality suffers. That's really OK but if the mobile phones aren't at rest it is probably because we are out in the yard with them and .. duh .. can always be used to make/receive calls just like the house phones.
Also, I've read some more about voip.ms and like what I see. I could see switching the legacy phone number to it to provide the OGM and potentially call forwarding.