Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) Phone Service

Brooke Clarke 2012

Table of Providers
Telco AC-211 ATA - Locked = Not Useable
Obihai oBI110
Obihai oBI200
Related Web Pages


It's now possible to make and receive phone calls over the internet.  For me this should mean free calls to any U.S. phone number.
Note it's free to me to receive a phone call on my at&t land line phone, so that will continue.
But when I make an outgoing call I'll use VOIP (Wiki) such as VOIP.ms or CallWithUs where the cost for any U.S. (48 states) is about 1 cent/minute.

Note Skype allows making voice or video calls to any Skype number, but there is a cost per minute to call someone's land line or cell number.
If the Skype monthly fee is $2.99 that would be a good way to go if your monthly call minutes exceeded 299 minutes, but that's much more than I use.

I'm looking for devices like the Magic Jack that can be connected to a home phone system and appear to that system like a central office line allowing low cost outgoing calls.

Table of Providers

Initial $ (free calls)
More free calls $
Magic Jack
MagicJack Plus
$88 (1 year)
$30/year or $100/5 years
NetTalk DUO II $35 (3 months) $30/year
Obihai Technology, Inc.
Need Google Voice
$4/month (government fees)
SPA112 $45
use with VOIP.ms ?  about 1.05 cent/minute calling (Devices)
eBay ($2.50)

Telco AC-211.jpg - Configuration

$10/mo (for 3 mo) then $26/year

Devices 0.95 cents/minute to call in U.S.

Telco AC-211 ATA USA Datanet

23 Dec 2012 - Giving up on getting this to work.  I think it's been locked to the USA Datanet service by hiding the IP address.
Have the Obihai oBI110 on order.

This was purchased new in the box on eBay for a few dollars.
So far not able to connect to box with direct LAN connection to computer using IP address

If connected directly to the computer is a straight or reversed LAN cable needed? ans. probably does not matter because the newer computers (mine) auto detect the cable wiring so crossover cables are no longer needed.

On setting factory default and unlocking:  http://voipfan.net/unlock/ac211.php
After disconnecting the power from the AC-211 for 30 seconds and plugging it back in then within 10 seconds (guess) dialing the factory reset number ##333-2858 and waiting 6 seconds there is a busy tone.

There does not appear to be any reset button or jumper on the hardware?

This maybe a problem related to how to connect the AC-211 and what cable to use.

LAN port to computer
straight cable
LAN port to router
straight cable
LAN port computer
crossover cable
LAN port to router
crossover cable
WAN port to computer
straight cable
WAN port to router
straight cable
WAN port to computer
crossover cable
WAN port to router
crossover cable

Obihai oBI110

2019 October 8 - After switching from DSL to point-to-point wireless internet access when trying to make a VOIP call the error message : "the number you're calling is not assigned" is heard.  This is caused by the Obihai box not communicating with the new source on the LAN.  The fix was to unplug power from the Obihai box for about 15 seconds and plug it back in.  That allowed a new handshake on the LAN.

???? at some point the OBI110 became obsolete and was replaced by the OBI200.

4 June 2017 After dialing a number you get the voice announcement: "There is no service available to complete your call".
This was caused by Google Voice turning off my account.
On the Google Voice web page there was a link to "verify my phone number" and after selecting the voice method and pressing the CALL button I got a phone call with a numeric code which I typed into the code window.  That fixed the Google Voice stuff.
But on the Obihai dash board no amount of deleting and installing Google Voice would allow the "Configuring" to complete.
But . . .  . The below procedure worked to re-establish Obi operation

PS my oBI110 is normally connected to a central office line on a Panasonic KX-TA824 telephone system, so to do the following procedure I needed to find a plain old touch tone telephone.

OBi110 doesn't receive incoming calls to Google Voice number
The above is the subject of many Obihai Forum threads and happened to me.  None of the simple fixes worked but a total reset did work.
This is what to do when the "Configuration" wheel keeps spinning:

  1. On the Obihai web page Dashboard click the gear icon then "Delete Device"
  2. With a POTS telephone connected to the phone port on the Obi device press ***8 then 1 to confirm "reset to factory defaults".
  3. Back on the Obihai web page on the left under Dashboard click on "Add Device" and be sure there's a check on "use Google Voice". 
    There will be a number to dial starting with **5 nnnn and after dialing that number you will hear " . . . has been sent to the server"
  4. Check to confirm you can make and receive calls.
Obihai oBI110 VOIP ATA

This ATA comes unlocked and is aimed at services like Google Voice, VOIP.ms, CallWithUs, etc.
It handles 2 SIP accounts for example both Google Voice AND CallWithUs.
Prior to dialing an phone number you can select which Service Provider (SP1 or SP2) by using:
**1 for SP1
**2 for SP2
**8 for the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) i.e. the Line jack on the oBi110 (used for 911 calls)
**9 for oBiTalk Network
---- or ----
There's an Auto Attendant (AA) feature that can be enabled, but I don't plan on using it.

I think the KX-TA824 can have autodial numbers set into the programmable buttons so the the oBi110 is selected and the SP select **number is all dialed with a single button press on the KX-T7731 system phone.  But the **number can also be dialed from any touch tone phone that has it's default outgoing line set to the oBi110.  Some other star code could be used on a TT phone to first select the oB9110 then the **number code could be used to select the SP.

Getting it to work

The first step is setting up an oBiTalk account. 
After connecting the oBi device to the router, a plain old telephone and plugging in the DC power (wait for the LEDs to stabilize),
check for firmware updates by:
dial ***6 and if the voice says there's a firmware update follow the instructions (press 1 to confirm.  Hang up. wait a couple of minutes then check the on line oBi dashboard.

Obi Note: If you want to use Google Voice then you MUST use your Primary gmail email address for your oBiTalk account (this is a secret they don't tell you until the Google voice setup fails with Backing Off.  Open a new account with the gmail address

Do a Factory Reset

  1. Unplug the DC power
  2. press and hold the reset button on the bottom of the oBi110 using a paper clip,
  3. While still holding down the reset button power up and wait for the LED to change from red to green then to flashing green, now you can release the reset button.
  4. The power LED will briefly turn red then back to solid green.

Add a device

  1.  on the oBiTalk web page click "Add Device"
  2. click next
  3. dial the special number with the oBi device connected and powered up (**5 nnnn).  If it works you should see a new web page
  4. press CONFIRM.
  5. Click on oBi Dashboard and you should now see your device in a table.  Click on the device name to open it's configuration web page

            Setup Google Voice
  1. On my gmail web page I made a call to my home phone (required installing the Google voice & chat plug-in to the browser)
  2. On the oBi device setup web page click the botton "Google-Voice setup" and then "accept"
  3. I unchecked Google voice mail and put in my area code for "7-Digit Dialing for USA & CAN (Optional)" to make dialing local numbers easier
  4. Click Submit & wait for a couple of minutes then refresh the web page (prsee F5).  If you haven't waited long enough the same page will reappear.
  5. If the line for SP1 says "connected" then make a phone call using the oBi. (It's working!)

Problem (Dec 2015)

I changed my Google password and that disabled Google Voice on the oBi11.
But. . . .  when going to the obi talk web page there was a login problem since I needed to use my Google email rather than my normal email.  That was straightened out by an email from oBi.  See oBi Note above.
But . . . after logging into oBi Talk I still could not update the Google password.
It turns out that at the top of the oBi web page there is what appears to be an ad saying that I must update the firmware in the oBi110 before I can connect it and that requires a 1 year service contract.
It's a few clicks to buy the service contract through Amazon and that allowed the VOIP system to work.  Did not actually make any changes to the Google password, but that's what triggered the need for new firmware.

There was some problem, other than the End Of Life announcement, that caused me to get the oBI200.  Maybe the firmware could have been updated again?

Obihai oBI200

Obihai oBI200 VOIP box
Left to right
Phone line to a KX-TA824 Central Office Line - programmed to "press 9 for outside line".
LAN cable was to D-Link DGS-108 network switch but moved to the AT&T DSL router so it will work in a power outage.
DC power to oBI200 plugged into CyberPower CST1500S sinewave UPS

End of Service data is Dec 18, 2023 - but so far it's still working with Google Talk (29 Feb 2024).
Please let me know of a replacement.

LAN Cables

When both ends of the cable are pointing in the same direction a straight cable will have the same color wire on each pin, but a crossover cable (Wiki) will have different color wires.
Click on photo to see larger image.

Straight 1:1 LAN Cable
straight 1:1 LAN
Crossover LAN Cable
Crossover LAN

Teleco AC-211
Teleco AC-211
Teleco AC-211
Teleco AC-211

Ping losangeles.VOIP.ms

Between 43 and 45 ms round trip.

Ping losangeles.VOIP.ms

VOIP & Old Telephones = C*NET



5825771 Audio transceiver, Alon Cohen, Lior Haramaty, VocalTec Ltd (Wiki), 1998-10-20, -

Related Web Pages

at&t DSL
Cell phones
Phones, phone patents
Rural Internet
The End of AT&T Land Lines


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Page Created 2 December 2012