Thursday, May 26, 2016

Pinching the Phone Bill

Recently, Brandon and I noticed our 12 month deal we had negotiated with Time Warner Cable had come to an end. Our bill was going to jump $25 for just internet and phone!  (Side note: Don't just accept rate raises. Call and negotiate your cable bill yearly! That's a subject for a future blog post.)

We pretty much use our cell phones all the time; but, my mother has a difficult time hearing us on the cell phones, so we added a landline for her since it was basically free with the deal we negotiated with Time Warner Cable a year ago.  When we called this year, we were able to renegotiate our cable internet bill down to an acceptable price, but they were still going to charge us $20 extra for the phone. And, sorry, Mom, but $20/month is a lot to pay so you can hear us better!

We decided to go ahead and drop the phone, and I started doing research to see what we could replace it with.  I discovered something that seemed almost too good to be true: OBiTALK. It's a tiny little box that uses Google Voice to provide phone service, and we were able to get on Amazon for a one-time cost of $42. With a monthly bill of $0. Perfect! I was a bit skeptical, but we figured it was worth a try because this was our one option of keeping mom happy.

It uses Google Voice to provide phone service, which is free.  We already had a Google Voice number so we elected to use that, but we could have kept our phone number for a $20 one-time fee. Google Voice has a lot of free features, including voicemail, voicemail transcription, conference calls, call blocking, etc . You can check them out here: The one thing Google Voice does NOT support is 911 calls, If this feature is important to you, please check out calling 911 with an OBi.

When we got the box, we were really happy to see how small it was. It was about the size of the palm of a hand (SO much better than the monstrosity we had gotten from the phone company).  We plugged it into the internet/router, followed the directions, and we had it set up in about ten minutes.

The real test, though, was calling mom.  So, we held our breath and dialed.  Mom loved it! She said it was even clearer than the TWC line. Phew!  Needless to say, we're pretty ecstatic. Mom is happy because she can hear us, and we're happy because we were able to SAVE!

OBiTALK has quite a few different devices. You can get a phone adapter to plug your phone into, or you can just get an OBiTALK phone. Check them out below.

Please share in the comments below how you save on your bills!

Keep on pinching!

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