By now, if you have been reading my blog much, you know how much of a gadget guy I am. I’m thinking pretty hard about starting to use skype for all my long distance calls from home. Jennifer and I went way over on our cell plan minutes this month, so that has added some serious motivation. I do have to give a big thanks to the great guy at US Cellular who helped me change my plan to include free mobile to mobile minutes and free nights and weekends for just a few dollars more than I am paying. AND especially for back-dating the plan so I didn’t have to pay $100 extra for all those minutes. That’s a big relief here at Christmas.
The only problem typically with Skype is that you have to be sitting right at your computer to use it. Now Philips has come up with a pretty cool phone at a reasonable price to combine the best of skype with a traditional cordless phone. Check out this phone
It’s a Philips 3211 Cordless Skype Voice Over IP phone that plugs in the USB port of your computer. You can use it to make landline or skype calls to anyone on the internet. It works just like a regular cordless phone, so you can use it anywhere in your house. Skype has just annouced new skypeout prices of $14.95 for unlimited long distance calling to anybody in the US for an entire year! So you use the phone just like normal for local calls, and you can switch over to skype for any long distance calls. Philips is even coming out with a newer phone that plugs directly into your wifi router so you don’t have to leave your computer on. The price for it is supposed to be around $150 so it is probably out of my league. I leave my computer on most of the time anyway.
This is a cool way to start integrating internet technology into your house. Now, if I can only get away from using the phone company for dsl, I could cancel my home phone service and just go with cell & internet.