VOIP with new ipod worth it?

Discussion in 'iPod touch' started by avilla86, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. avilla86 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2010
    #1
    Here's my dilemma. I currently pay $45/mo for unlimited prepaid cell phone service. Virgin mobile offers unlimited 3g data via mifi for $40/mo.

    No matter how much I tell myself the ipod touch is not an iphone, I still can't help but want to use it like one.

    Are there any VOIP apps out there that would effectively make the new ipod touch able to perform the basic functions of a cell phone?

    Will these apps run in the background and be able to notify of an incoming call or text message?

    Sorry for the noob questions. I really only use my cell for texting and short calls anyways. Access to the internet wherever I go via my touch is what I'm looking for so maybe I should just go for it.:confused:
     
  2. tablo13 macrumors 65816

    tablo13

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2010
    Location:
    Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
    #2
    I heard that people in MacRumors can use the Gmail calling from the iPod touch... if that works, that's AWESOME! Free calls to anywhere in US and Canada in 2010 :cool: But they didn't exactly tell me how. :(
     
  3. jcdavies macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2010
    #3
    that would be amazing, I think skype already has an app that should work with the new ipod touch
     
  4. Phil In Idaho macrumors member

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    Sep 1, 2010
  5. burgundyyears macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2010
    #5
    It eats battery right now in the background. I wouldn't recommend it until they improve the multitasking battery performance of it.
     
  6. fwoppers macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    #6
    I have been losing my mind trying to figure out how to do this, heh. Google Voice pretty much tells me that the device needs an assigned phone number, and seeing as it doesn't have that natively ... :p
     
  7. avilla86 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2010
    #7
    The more I look into it the more promising the skype app looks as a mobile phone replacement. Now my only issue is skype mobile does not support SMS??? WTH?!

    It seems very inconvenient to have someone call me on my skype number and have them text me on a different number via textfree or whatever.

    Is there an app that lets someone make and receive calls and send and receive sms messages all while running in the background with one phone number?

    Am I asking for too much here? I just want a cheaper alternative to the iphone.
     
  8. fwoppers macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    #8
    You can SMS, too. http://www.skype.com/intl/en-us/features/allfeatures/sms

    :) I'm planning on using Skype as a VOIP on my Touch, too.
     
  9. vistadude macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2010
    #9
    You can get a skype number with forwarding that will forward inbound calls to your existing phone. This would let you dial out from the ipod. The reality is, this costs more than just getting a smartphone like the droid or iphone and using the unlimited data. The droid will even let you use skype and google voice, both incoming and outgoing.

     
  10. EllieV macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #10
    You guys who are trying to do this though, it will only work with wifi, you resize you still dint have 3G.... Unless you get the apple peel 520...
     
  11. apaulct macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2009
    #11
    How about Whistle Phone ... free app & free (so far) VoIP service. Tested it with my IPH4G, called CT to FL & the person on the other end thought I was using a land line. Only kind of drawback is they issue you a Chicago number but I added it to my Google Voice number so it's now a "local" call. With GV, I can pick up on my landline, cell, or IPT.
     
  12. Kamakzie macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2010
    #12
    Whistle Phone is awesome. I got a Bridgeport, CT #.
     
  13. sjinsjca macrumors 68000

    sjinsjca

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    #13
    Today, I highly recommend against proprietary services such as Skype and MagicJack. There are several good standards-based voip services out there which you can connect-to via computer softphone, iPhone/iPad/IPodTouch apps and inexpensive analog adaptors like the ~$50 Linksys/Cisco PAP2T-NA.

    The one I chose for my own use is voip.ms. Spectacular feature set and really low prices in a pay-as-you-go pricing model. You can port your existing landline or cell number to them, or choose a new number just about anywhere for literally pennies per month. My landline was costing me about $35/month with no features (not even caller ID); my voip.ms setup, including usage, costs me a total of about $5 a month of which 1/3 is taxes for things like 911 service. That's way less than Skype, and I'm not limited to their proprietary hardware and features. The sound quality of voip.ms's premium links is superb yet still costs less than 1.6c/min from the US to Germany. Everything is provisioned from their website, which offers so many options it's kind of daunting. I got up the learning curve in a couple of days, assisted by very rapid response from the voip.ms staff when I had questions. Great group.
     
  14. Phil In Idaho macrumors member

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    Sep 1, 2010
    #14
    Is there an app or...?
     
  15. tecta macrumors newbie

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    Sep 20, 2010
    #15
    Does Whistle Phone support build-in microphone?
     
  16. fwoppers macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    #16
    Yes.
    I stated using Whistle Phone yesterday. The reception can be kinda iffy sometimes, but it works pretty well for what it is. Since the phone number given to me is long-distance, I used Google Voice to direct it to a local number. :p
     
  17. tecta macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2010
  18. Link2999 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2008
    #18
    Same here. If anyone knows how to use Google Calling on an iPod Touch, please post some instructions :)
     
  19. sjinsjca macrumors 68000

    sjinsjca

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    #19
    There are several excellent apps that can connect to a generic SIP service like http://www.voip.ms (my choice) or CallCentric.

    You can always try more than one! For example, right now I have about four on my iPhone.

    The one I like best, and the one I've installed on my family's other iPhones and iPad, is the free Whistle Phone: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/whistle-phone/id322326573?mt=8 ...Whistle also offers excellent Mac and Windows VOIP clients. http://whistlephone.com/

    There are several paid apps that I'm sure are even better, but so far I haven't had the urge to upgrade. Maybe someday... I'm still early in my usage of VOIP, and Whistle suits my needs ideally right now.

    Whistle offers its own VOIP service, like Fring and Truphone, but I prefer the rich feature set, vanishingly low cost and superb performance of a good, non-proprietary, dedicated VOIP service that I can access from a variety of devices. Setting up Whistle's app and desktop clients to use a generic VOIP service is very simple. When you run the software for the first time, it will give you the option of starting up a new Whistle account, or configuring it to use a generic SIP connection. That's the one you want. Give it your VOIP account number (or, in voip.ms's case, subaccount number-- read on) and point it at the server address. (voip.ms has many servers to choose from in North America; pick the one closest to you geographically for lowest latencies. By comparison, Fring routes all its traffic through its servers in Ireland, meaning latencies can be nasty.)

    Done.

    Whistle Phone works great with voip.ms. It gives me two lines, and I can conference them together. Voice quality is really superb. I have all my voip.ms sub-accounts set to use the highest-quality codecs (ulaw and G.729), so voice quality is indistinguishable from a landline for both me and my recipients. If I were bandwidth limited there is also a GSM codec option. So far that has not been needed-- my home WiFi router and connection are fast and stable. http://myspeed.visualware.com/indexvoip.php is a very good tool to use for evaluating your connection for VOIP usage. In particular, some routers are not-so-good for VOIP. You want one with a good quality-of-service (QoS) engine and a VOIP-aware firewall. You might want to experiment with turning your router's "SIP ALG" (Application Layer Gateway) on or off too. The Whistle Phone people give great service if you have questions, too. A quality operation.

    (On voip.ms, one can have any number of sub-accounts; they're free, and let you dedicate a virtual "extension" to a specific device... so I have a sub-account for each of the family's four iPhones, for my wife's iPad, for the home's Linksys/Cisco PAP2T-NA analog telephone adaptor, and for my MacBook Pro; each can be dialed separately as if they were extensions in an office. Each can also have its own Caller ID and individual mailbox, automated attendant, etc.-- no charge! You can even instantly order and provision a dedicated dial-in number just about anywhere in the world and assign it to one or more of the subaccounts; this can, for example, give your callers a local number in another country which will ring you wherever you are. Cost is pennies per month. You can quickly go crazy with all the features voip.ms offers! There's a bit of a learning curve, as the many options and even more acronyms are daunting to confront at first, but you'll learn quickly, and Google is your friend.)

    Recommended. Highly.
     
  20. Mr Kram macrumors 68000

    Mr Kram

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    Oct 1, 2008
  21. trajen macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2008
    #21
    I am strongly considering getting the new iPod Touch as a replacement for a phone, especially with the included mic and speakers. I didn't talk much when I had a cell phone; most people just text anyway.

    The thought of $2.99 for unlimited Skype calling is pretty amazing. With an iPod Touch, wifi, Skype and Text+ for $36/year I'd be stupid to stay with any mobile carrier.
     
  22. Alaerian Guest

    Alaerian

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2005
    Location:
    A barstool, Innis & Gunn in hand
    #22
    Since most people are ignoring this part, quoting for emphasis.

    Unless you are on WiFi near 100% of your time, an iPod Touch is NOT a phone replacement. No matter what app you use or get, you cannot force an iPod Touch onto a cellular network. The hardware simply isn't there.
     
  23. trajen macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2008
    #23
    Wifi is more and more available these days. It's worth it to me to not have a 2 year contract and ridiculous bill.
     
  24. Mr Kram macrumors 68000

    Mr Kram

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    #24
    you can get a mobile hot spot for $40/month in the US. that is cheaper than any voice/data/text plan for the iphone. i think it's even cheaper in other countries.
     
  25. fwoppers macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    #25
    I've been using Whistle Phone to call from college when I need someone to pick me up, not necessarily as an everyday phone (which I don't have because $60+ a month would be a waste of money with the minimal amount of calling I do).
    But yeah, I've also considered getting a mobile hotspot, but I haven't found the right one for me.
     

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