Potential Alternatives to Extend Home

i am deeply saddened about this. If anyone comes up with an alternative that would replace this, please post about it.

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Hi @Obie,

I’ve taken the liberty of moving your question to its’ own topic. There are alternatives. Which alternative would be best depends upon one’s use case.

  1. What are your goals for such a potential replacement? For example, would you be replacing existing landline service?
  2. Do you wish to show your Republic number as outbound Caller ID or would using a separate number to make and receive calls be acceptable?
  3. Do you have an idea of how many minutes outbound and inbound you might need?
  4. How much expense would you be prepared to accept?
  5. Do you need 911 on the “home” phone?
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Ooma is a good VOIP service. Like Extend Home, you buy the box and plug it into your modem. There basic service is “free”, you pay about $6.00/month in taxes and fees.

Since it is a separate service, it would have a separate phone number (the reason for the fees) and wouldn’t integrate with your RW number like EH does. Nothing will replace that but there is an app that will allow it to ring both at home and your cell.

I had Ooma and was very satisfied until EH came along.

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Ooma can be a good choice. Ooma’s “free” (taxes only) tier lacks features offered by Republic’s Extend Home and other alternatives. Among the things one does not get with Ooma Basic are CNAM (Caller ID Name) and call blocking. One can choose to pay Ooma an additional $10/month for those and some other things.

Here’s what I set up for a relative (not a Republic member) as their “landline”. Their phone number is hosted with Anveo for $2/month with unlimited inbound calls. Calls to that phone number are SIP URI forwarded to Callcentric. There is no additional cost for this. Callcentric provides 911 and 120 minutes of outbound calling for $1.95/month. Like many of us, this particular relative mostly relies on their cell phone, so rarely uses more than 120 minutes of outbound calling. Minutes beyond the 120 are billed at $0.02 per minute. So, for $3.95 per month, they get 911 unlimited inbound minutes and 120 outbound minutes. Taxes and fees are built in. They can block calls using either Anveo or Callcentric. And, Callcentric offers a full-fledged IVR for call screening and at no additional charge.

The ATA used is an OBi 200 available at Amazon for roughly $50. OBIs are also the only ATAs that work directly with Google Voice. If GV is sufficient for one’s needs and 911 is not desired, then like Extend Home, one can have a “landline” for free after the cost of the ATA (analog telephone adapter) albeit with an additional number involved.

Now, that I’ve risked information overload, whether a turnkey solution such as Ooma or something more esoteric like what I describe is best depends entirely on one’s individual use case. And, that’s why I posed the questions I did earlier in the thread.

Last, there are ways to show one’s Republic number as outbound Caller ID using services like Anveo, Callcentric (and others). Forwarding inbound calls from one’s Republic phone to an ATA is, of course, also possible.

For those already using Republic’s Extend Home adapter, it’s premature to be jumping at any particular alternative. At this time, the thread would be more relevant to folks who had expressed an interest in Extend Home but who missed the opportunity to acquire the adapter.

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Is there any other carrier that offers something equivalent to Extend Home where one number rings both a cell phone and a VOIP line? The beauty of Extend Home and Anywhere is that they work when one’s phone doesn’t.

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That I know of only Verizon and it’s a business focused offering using IP phones rather than an ATA. Neither Extend Home or Anywhere is dead, at least not yet. While it might be prudent to consider possible alternatives, there’s still ample time to see what develops.

Yes, I’m just thinking ahead. I wonder if the Dish folks are aware of RW’s unique features? I suppose they are but instead intent on combining the companies they have purchased into a single ‘Dish Wireless’ that isn’t Wi Fi first. At least this will work for those folks who deal with companies like Chase who refuse to message RW phones because of their FCC classification.

None that I’m aware of. I’ve been using Google Voice to route calls to multiple cell phones and a home phone for years. Some of the cell phones don’t even have a SIM card in them (they’re Wi-Fi only with the Google Voice app installed).

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If I understand this correctly I would switch GV from my present GV number to my cell number and point GV at an OBI200’s number. Does GV now work with RW numbers?

That’s more complicated than what I do. I use my Google Voice number for everything. I haven’t even memorized my cell numbers, and never give them out to anyone. I just load the Google Voice app on my cell, go through the setup, and set it up to use Google Voice for all outgoing calls. For the home phone I have service through a VoIP provider and point Google Voice to that number. Of course, if I call out from the home phone the callerID will show the home phone number. I’ve never used the OBiTALK service. I like having a separate home phone number and the 911 access that comes with it. I can’t say I’ve ever had a problem with Republic Wireless numbers and Google Voice numbers, but I suppose with number recycling it’s always a possibility.

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  1. What are your goals for such a potential replacement? For example, would you be replacing existing landline service?

I would be replacing Extended Home

  1. Do you wish to show your Republic number as outbound Caller ID or would using a separate number to make and receive calls be acceptable?

The Republic Number is preferred

  1. Do you have an idea of how many minutes outbound and inbound you might need?

My guess is about an hour both inbound and outbound

  1. How much expense would you be prepared to accept?

$10 per month

  1. Do you need 911 on the “home” phone?

Preferably

What are your suggestions?

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My RW number won’t move to GV

Hi @Obie,

All that’s happened so far is Republic has stopped selling the Extend Home adapter. For folks like me and, apparently, you, the service continues. You do not need to replace Extend Home unless and until, Republic tells us it is discontinuing the service.

Do you still want suggestions regarding potential future replacements? Again, there is no need to do anything now if you already have the adapter and the service.

I believe Google Voice only transfers true mobile numbers.

From Port or transfer your personal number - Google Voice Help

You can port your mobile phone number into Google Voice or port your Google Voice number out to a mobile service provider. You can also transfer your Google Voice number from one Google Account to another.

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@cbwahlstrom is correct. No RW number will directly port to GV because of the VoIP/wireline regulatory classification of Republic numbers. Your number would port to Google Voice but only after an interim port to a mobile service provider whose numbers are classified as wireless (pretty much all mobile service providers other than RW these days).

For others reading; if you check your number to see if it would port to GV and the error is your number is from an area not supported as opposed to a carrier not supported, your number will not port to GV even with an interim port.

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The OBI i usually on sale for $40 between Amazon and New Egg. The OBI200 can handle one phone but 4 numbers , The 202 id dual line

I have both Ooma Hub /scout and Obi/Google voice
Ooma wants you to pay Which is free with GV to use on your cell phone. And if you want any features, like call blocking.

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At times, OBis are on sale but seemingly more infrequently than in the past.

Ooma Basic does include 911. The consumer flavor of Google Voice does not provide 911 but when using an OBi can be added via a supplemental service.

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You do not want to transfer your RW number grab a GV number and start phasing everyone to use it. you can program it to ring your home,work,an cell number. I have not given out my cell # in years. GV lets you block numbers, If MY RW cell rings I know it is spam, only 1 person would use it. My Daughter. If I ever needed to change my RW number i won’t have to tell anyone.

It’s a great setup for college students. They can track/log harrasment callers and block, or send them to voice mail. plus in most cases get the VM as a text.

OBI was bought by Polycom, As for 911 I have not had to use it… Even though OOma basic has 911, You can not get advanced features with out paying. So the few $$'s you can add 911 to GV

Yes, I know. Polycom subsequently merged with Plantronics to form what is now known as Poly.

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