ObiHai 200

The ObiHai 200 is a service dependent ATA (Analog Telephone Adapter) which uses the ObiTalk service to interconnect with up to 4 SIP accounts. This ATA was purchased for $50 at Amazon. The ObiHai 200 has one RJ11 port to plug in any touchtone telephone into it. There is also an RJ45 port for connecting the network, and therefore the Internet. Once initial configuration is done, things typically run smoothly.

The ObiTalk service can integrate with Google Voice through the service GTalk feature. Very few services support this feature, so one can’t just use any ATA. This is the primary reason of purchasing this particular ATA. There is also support for other SIP providers, and can integrate to automatically use a particular SIP provider for E911 calls. This is also a good thing as Google does not support E911.

This is not a perfect device or service. Trying to use dialing rules is cumbersome and requires some programming knowledge. This is not required to use the device, but it would be nice if ObiHai will offer a straightforward web based approach much like they do with their speed dialing feature. It will also be nice if the ATA supported different rings for different providers. If someone calls, I can not tell if they are calling my Google Voice account, or my SIP account.

All in all with the integration of Google Voice, this is a device I would buy again if I had to. Despite the flaws, the ATA works well enough, and with support of any touchtone phone, this ATA also makes it versatile enough for people who still want a landline without the high cost associated with most landlines. With Google Voice, the service is free and I pay about $3.00 for E911 service which also gives me free Directory Assistance (411).