Macbook Pro to Plain Old Telephone

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by sfinnerty, Sep 14, 2008.

  1. sfinnerty macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2006

    I am looking for a simple (at least I think it would be simple) program that would allow me to use my Mac like a POTS telephone. What I am hoping for is something that would allow me to buy a USB Modem to hook into my analog line at home (I have Vonage). When the home phone rings I would like the option of answering it on my computer (using my nice comfy headset). Would be nice to make calls using it as well (through the analog line).

    I have done a bit of searching and there really doesn't seem to be anything out there that is this simple in functionality. I can remember doing this 10 years ago with some software that came with the modem in my PC.

    So I am not looking for a program that will make VOIP calls, internet calls, TCP calls, etc. Again, I am looking for something so simple and "old fashioned" that it appears not to exist. A program that will convert the best laptop in the world to a phone like the one sitting at your grandmothers house.


  2. mobilehaathi macrumors G3


    Aug 19, 2008
    The Anthropocene
    Ohh, I remember doing this with my old PowerMac 7500...

    Unfortunately I dunno how to do it these days, I'd be kinda interested too...
  3. localoid macrumors 68020


    Feb 20, 2007
    America's Third World
    You'd need hardware to make this work. You can't just run the two wires from an analog telephone jack into your MBP audio in/out jacks and expect it to work by "the magic" of a software program.

    Connecting anything other than a telephone is not safe to do without the proper circuit -- the DC voltage on the telephone line is typically 48V DC, and the AC ring signal is about 70-120V AC, more than enough to give a human a pretty good electrical shock.

    Telephone line audio interface circuits

    Sound Blaster used to sell a "Phone Blaster" ISA card for use in a PC, but that was over a decade ago. Just buy grandma a new phone with a headphone jack if you want to use your "comfy headset".
  4. MyMac8MyPC macrumors member

    Sep 30, 2007
    If it's a Intel Mac then MagicJack would work great. If you need a screenshot of how it looks just let me know and I'll upload one :)
  5. hughvane macrumors 6502


    Aug 25, 2008
    Banks Peninsula, New Zealand
    Which is almost what I do, I answer at my computer, with a 'Custom' brand analog phone/keypad into which is hooked a one-spkr and stalk mic headset on a 6' cable. Hands free, I can continue to use my computer on broadband while in conversation via analog. I bought this unit at a NZ department store for equiv US$22.50. The headset isn't exactly robust, but it's comfortable enough, and both earpiece and mic work well.

    There are wireless headsets as well, transmitting with Bluetooth technology. Not cheap.

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