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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Important Message About Google Voice and Your OBi Device

Update 3 from Obihai on 9/11/14: Google Voice Now Officially Supported with OBi Devices
Update 2 from Obihai on 3/18/14: OBiTALK Approved Service Provider Program
Update 1 from Obihai on 12/31/13: Home Phone Service for Less Than 40 Bucks per Year

Google Sets the Date for the End of XMPP with Google Voice
Recently Google announced the end of support for XMPP based calling with Google Voice. This will happen on May 15, 2014 – that’s over 6 months from today. Since your OBi device uses XMPP to communicate with Google servers, the end of support will directly impact how your OBi device can be used with your Gmail account and its associated Google Voice phone number. Unfortunately, you will no longer be able to use the Google Voice communication service to make calls using the phone connected to your OBi device.  Also, the ability to receive calls to your Google Voice number, directly from Google’s service, will not be possible. 

Fortunately, your OBi device may be used with many Internet phone service providers – all providing very low-cost calling to the USA, Canada and almost every country in the world. Most offer subscriptions and pay-as-you-go plans starting from $1.30 per month (including E911) and rates starting at 1 cent per minute to the USA and Canada. The OBiTALK web portal can be used to easily configure an account from any of these services on your OBi. Of course, OBi-to-OBi calls, using the OBi number printed on the device, remain completely free.

Your OBi Will Continue to Deliver Valuable Features and Awesome Savings
So, what does this mean if you currently use a phone connected to an OBi device configured with your Gmail account and the Google Voice service?  First, your OBi will continue working as it does today – with calls to your Google Voice number ringing the phone and use of Google’s service for connecting calls to the numbers you dial. Over the coming weeks, we will provide more detailed information, including easy to follow, step-by-step instructions on how you can keep using your OBi and your current phone number to keep your home phone bill extremely low, yet retain the power and flexibility that comes from using the OBi and your choice of services – even Google Voice.

Obihai, a leader in the VoIP communications industry, will continue to invest in new innovations and technology that will directly benefit the individuals, families and businesses using Obihai products.  Your OBi device is a very valuable investment and our mission remains to help you save money, make it more convenient to stay connected to your friends and family and ultimately empower you with greater choices for communication. 

Services and Service Providers – Many to Choose From
Here is an alphabetical list of some of the more popular Internet phone service providers that can be used with your OBi device:

OBiTALK Approved Service Providers (Requires Log-in):

OBiTALK Compatible Service Providers:

These service providers also provide phone numbers from almost every North American area code – even international phone numbers.  They also offer number porting, so you can keep your old phone number for use with your OBi.  What’s more, most of these service providers have E911 built-in to their calling plans. Also, you have many choices as to how you want to pay for your service – Pay-as-you-go, monthly, yearly subscriptions. 

More information about using the OBi with a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) service can be found here.

Thank you for choosing Obihai!