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10. 28. 2005

Docking my cell phones in the Bermuda Triangle

dockntalk.jpg
A few months ago, I moved ten minutes down the street from where I used to live to find that I'd entered into a dead zone where I can't use my cell phones. I tried three different services (Sprint, Cingular, Verizon), but they were all the same. My real estate agent did tell me that the neighborhood was "tucked away," but I thought she was referring to the surrounding woods, not this invisible wall that will admit no cell phone signal. As a result, I have to walk out to the street corner to use my phones, or wedge my head into the corner by the refrigerator where there appears to be a little crack in this otherwise impenetrable wall.

I got all excited when I heard about phone systems that allow you to use your home land line to make and receive cell phone calls. Among the touted benefits of these systems: they enable you to use your long distance minutes on your cell while at home and to have multiple users on different handsets for those cozy long-distance family conversations. I don't care about minutes or family conferences, I just want to be able to use my cell phones in the comfort of my computer room or livingroom or bedroom. Motorola, RCA, and Uniden offer these systems, though the review of these products in BusinessWeek points out that they all have limited compatability with cell phone models (Motorola's only works with Motorola phones).

Because I tend to change phones often, I like the Dock-n-Talk by PhoneLabs, which is compatible with over 650 cell phone models and has bluetooth connectivity (though it can also be used with a non-bluetooth phone if you get the adaptor). It sells for $149.99 (the online special price shown on the PhoneLabs site is $139.99).

Posted by Hoyun    Category: devices
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Comments (2)

I have to admit I'm really confused by this post. Your first paragraph sounds just like my situation - my home is in a dead zone, so I can't use my cell phone at home either. But I took a look at the Dock-n-Talk's webpage, and it looks to me like it's doing the opposite of what you've described here. It looks like the Dock-n-Talk lets you use your hardwired phone to make calls over your cellular network, rather than the other way around. Could you please explain a little more your understanding of this product?

Hoyun:

You're right about how the Dock-n-Talk works, Meredith. It enables you to use your cell service on your hardwired lines. You dock your cell in the area where you get the strongest signal (in my case, by a window in my kitchen), and then you can use your home land line to make and take calls from your cellular service. For me, this eliminates the need for me to stand in the one hot spot in my house to use my cell phone. It's not a solution for areas that are complete dead zones.

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