Tag Archives | Ooma

Ooma: A Nifty Way to Make Free Internet Calls

Ooma is a sure-fire winner for letting home users make free calls within the United States and pennies per call overseas.

Pick up the phone and you’ll hear a familiar dial tone (not that anyone dials anymore; heck, few people under 30 even get what that means). And once you’re connected, the voice quality is remarkable — as good as your landline — and better if you call another Ooma user.

Costco sells the Ooma for $179; Amazon‘s price is closer to $200. You can connect your existing landline to Ooma — corded or cordless — or buy Ooma’s $49 cordless handset.

I have lots of disclaimers, though, things for you to consider before sending your landline to the landfill.

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Ooma Telo: The Anti-MagicJack

Last Gadget Standing Nominee: Ooma Telo

Price: $249.99

Ooma may be a VoIP system, but it’s got a spin that doesn’t bear much resemblance to something like MagicJack. It’s built around a classy-looking box which you plug into a telephone and your home network. Calls are in what the Ooma folks call “high definition” quality. Once you’ve paid for the device, US calling is free (a $9.99/month upgrade, Ooma Premier, adds features such as call forwarding, simultaneous ringing, and a second line). And options let you use your cell phone with the Ooma box or use your iPhone with an Ooma number over any 3G or Wi-Fi network.

Other VoIP options such as Vonage don’t involve a big-ticket piece of hardware, but do require monthly charges–Vonage is $25.99 a month. The Ooma folks are hoping that you’ll do the math and decide it makes sense to pay up front for the hardware. Is anyone reading this an Ooma customer?