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Review: Dock-N-Talk

08/22/06 | by Adam | Categories: Technology, Reviews

Summary: the Dock-N-Talk is a gizmo that allows regular telephones to use a cellphone as if it was a landline.

Rationale: $500 a year in Telus charges for a landline barely used while paying quite a lot more for a cellphone with lots of any-time minutes and miscellaneous extras. The home telephone kit is already paid for and in convenient locations.

The Dock-N-Talk arrived (via Voxilla Canada) so naturally I tried to get it up and running immediately. It arrived in a huge packing box full of foam peanuts; inside was a much, much smaller white box with the unit, power adaptor and a couple of phone cables.

The version I bought came with a BlueTooth adaptor so I paired it up with my Nokia 6310i very quickly. They also sell cables if you want to recharge the phone from the DNT while using it as the line instead. The instructions were pretty clear and worked fine. I then plugged a spare telephone handset into the unit and started calling around. Sound quality is that of a cellphone (as expected) but there's no problem with clarity, volume or delay. BT range is about 15' after which the two disconnect, the home network goes dead and the cellphone reverts to regular mobile use. Bring them back together and it reconnects automatically, bringing the home system up and running again within seconds. The cellphone will typically sit in a charger near the DNT when I'm home so that'll be fine.

I disconnected my phone system in the house from the external Telus land line and plugged the DNT into one of the phone outlets. This allowed use of all the phones scattered around the house to call out via the cellphone. Dialtones come through immediately and calls are completed within a brief amount of time; in many respects it's very similar indeed to making a cell call (which after all is exactly what you're doing.) Another cellphone was used to call back again to see how well it handled incoming calls; the answer is just fine. There's a modest 1-2 second delay between when he spoke and when I heard it but it shouldn't make a difference if you're not actually in the same room timing it. Caller ID is passed through, and apparently if I had a newer cellphone, the Caller Name would be too; as it is the DNT substitutes in its own name instead but passes through the incoming number correctly.

The DNT supports multiline systems so you can have a landline and cell connection at the same time so long as they're on different phone pairs. I also picked up a Uniden 5GHz 2-Line cordless system to try this out on; works like a charm.

There's also support for caller waiting and mailbox dialing but as I don't have those on my cellplan but I didn't try to use it.

All told, the system came to about $250 including shipping and the BT support. Originally I was planning on cancelling the landline to offset the price, but family pressure was convinced me otherwise -- something to do with having the learn new phone numbers. Ah well. So much for the cost savings.

Conclusion: good piece of kit, works exactly as sold. Recommended.

 

2 comments

Comment from: David Whyte [Visitor]  
David Whyte

Very helpful. thank you
One question if you receive a text do you get any interaction on your landline phone

09/09/16 @ 00:05
Comment from: Adam [Member]  
Adam

I would doubt that very much as no landline phone that I’m aware of supports displaying text messages.

04/17/18 @ 18:54
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