Ooma Telo’s New Bag of Tricks

Dave Zatz —  January 6, 2010

ooma-iphone

Tonight at Digital Experience (in the Mirage), Ooma will unveil a slew of new VoIP goodness scheduled to hit Telo customers over the next few months. But first, a quick refresher… Ooma Telo is a hardware device (<$250) that provides pretty much unlimited domestic phone calling with no monthly fees utilizing whatever broadband provider you’ve got. Plug in your own POTS phones, as I’ve done, or pick up the new Telo handsets ($50) for more advanced functionality around the home.

The first new features ensure and improve to call quality. Ooma Pure Voice ensures solid connections with consistent audio on saturated Internet lines. Because you’re downloading too much BitTorrent. High Definition Voice, on the other hand, is specifically designed to enhance audio quality by increasing the ranges of frequencies transmitted.

On the Internet side of the house, Ooma will launch voicemail transcription with messages delivered via email or text message. Anyone using Google Voice understands the high convenience factor. (Yes, I leave myself voicemail “notes”.) Speaking of Google Voice, Ooma’s GV Extensions will finally launch to link the two services, including the ability to use your GV number for outbound callerid and providing one-touch access to GV voicemail.

But I’ve saved Ooma’s coolest new functionality for last. With the addition of a Bluetooth accessory (free to Premiere members, $50 for everyone else) you’ll be able to link the Telo to a wide variety of mobile handsets. Not only will this enable you to share your mobile phone book, but you can also answer your cellphone from your home phone. Meaning, you can leave it in that one corner where you get great reception. Additionally, you’ll also be able to answer your home phone using your Jawbone. Last, but not least, a $9.99 iPhone app is coming which will provide Ooma customers 250 minutes (additional domestic minutes run 1.9c) of WiFi calling each month. Extending the value of Ooma well beyond your home.

7 responses to Ooma Telo’s New Bag of Tricks

  1. So I was all set to buy Ooma. Is there a new hardware base station I should wait for or is it okay to buy now?

  2. Brent, the Telo came out this spring. It’s the latest and greatest. I have the prior model – it’s got a more industrial look, it isn’t quite as capable (like this Bluetooth stuff), and consumes more power. But when I was with Dash, I had multiple hour conference calls multiple times per week. Never had a dropped call or the sort of distortion that plagued me on Vonage. I don’t use it much these days (we’re nearly 100% cellular), but during that massive DC snowstorm the other week I pulled it out and worked from home – no probs. I have a Panasonic cordless phone 3 pack we were using with it.

  3. Same question here, can I buy the Telo thats in the stores now, and avail of these newly announced features down the road, or is there a new base station with built in Bluetooth coming, that I need to wait for?

  4. Yep, the new Telo currently in Best Buy, online, etc will be getting these features. The Bluetooth dongle will run you a Premiere membership or $50, as I mentioned, though. And the app is $9.99. Not unreasonable.

  5. Just be sure you buy the Telo, they do not support the Hub with any of the new features (even though they promised to when they announced the Google Voice Extensions last March). See: http://www.ooma.com/media/press-releases/ooma-adds-features-enhance-google-voice%E2%84%A2-experience

  6. Can the bluetooth dongle work with multiple phones, or do you need multiple dongles (1 for each phone)?

  7. YEs you can have up to 4 cell phones paired with the single bluetooth dongle along with multiple BT headsets for a total of 7 devices.