updated 04:55 pm EST, Thu February 17, 2011
Verizon launches Home Phone Connect service
Verizon has just launched its Home Phone Connect home-phone service that uses a wireless router. It will retain the use of a traditional home phone, however, and allow for unlimited domestic calls for $20 per month. Anyone, not just current subscribers, can sign up.
Otherwise included with the service are call waiting, call forwarding, caller ID, three-way calling, voicemail and 911 service. Users also have the option of adding a line to their Verizon Wireless family plan for $10 per month, but the new home line will have to share minutes with everyone else on the plan.
The base station itself costs $129, or free after rebates and subsidized on a two-year contract. With a one-year commitment, it costs $50.
Compared to VoIP-based phone services, Verizon's offering doesn't require a broadband connection. And also unlike those offerings, a GPS chip in the base station provides location info to 911 services. A battery pack in the station also allows for retained service despite power outages.