The Ooma Telo home phone system was released as a VoIP phone that can make and receive calls from all over the world – while offering free calls within the United States – you just pay taxes. What really stands out about the device, and why we reviewed it, is that aside from offering a wide range of benefits it also has the ability to block calls and prevent spam callers from disturbing you. Before we get into how that technology works – lets first take a look at the features of the device and see what it has to offer.
Fees and Charges
The Ooma Telo system has the ability to make free calls (excluding tax) after you purchase the device for roughly $129 (although it is available online at retailers like Amazon for $100). After your purchase, you can expect to pay roughly $5 a month in taxes for nationwide calls. International call packages start at $17.99 for unlimited calling to over 61 countries. See the picture below for the taxes breakdown based on an example zip code.
Pros and Cons
Most users of the device report excellent call quality. It’s apparent that the manufacturers spent extra time on the speakers of the device in order to ensure that the call quality emitting from the device is crisp and clear. The device itself plugs into your current home phone, and there is also an option to keep your own phone number (for a fee). The only cons we could find when researching the Ooma was that customer support was not always up to par, and that it takes a while to receive support. Another con mentioned was that the Ooma Inbox feature (voicemail) is occasionally unavailable, although looking at most recent reviews they seemed to have at least addressed this issue and improve the voicemail box.
- Users state that Ooma is true to their word when it comes to fees and charges, no hidden charges come along the way.
- Ooma Premier is still cheaper than some phone bills, making it completely worth it because of the extra features you receive (to learn about these features, read the sections below).
- Very few complaints with the device. Most customers are very happy (and you can see that based on their 4.5/5 stars rating on Amazon.)
Nest Thermostat Integration
Integration with the Nest thermostat is also possible (with a premium package). This enables the Ooma to forward phone calls to your Nest device when the thermostat is in away mode, so you’ll never miss a call even when you’re out and about. In addition, you can also setup alerts so that when a smoke or CO alarm goes off at your house, the Ooma will automatically call you and inform you of the incident. They even went one step further and enabled you to contact emergency personnel right from your phone, even when you’re away. If you have young children or elderly individuals, you’ll also find value in this device because it will inform you if a designated person doesn’t arrive home when they should, sending you an alert. It was a really smart idea for the folks over at Ooma to partner with Nest, as both devices seem to work flawlessly together.
Anonymous Call Blocking
The Ooma Telo also has the ability to block spam calls. It also comes with a standard caller ID system and call waiting feature so that you can block a call before you even have to answer or pick up the phone. Roma also enables you to block all anonymous calls before they even reach the device. You can block them outright or send them straight to voicemail. (You need to enable this feature before it becomes active, and you can disable the feature at any time.)
When a person is blocked, the device gives instructions to the caller on how to dial a certain number and go through – most robotic callers cannot do this, and spammers or telemarketers usually don’t take the time to go through with it, so you can be sure to only receive calls coming in from people you want to talk to. The anonymous call blocking feature is only available to Premier members.
You can watch an unboxing and setup video here. We are not affiliated in any way with this YouTube user.