Replace VZW Home Connect with Smart Phone and Cell2Jack?

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diogenes009

New member
HoFo Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2006
Messages
21
Carrier(s)
Verizon
Device(s)
VX 8300
Hello, I am seeking some advice and counsel from any more savvy members.

My situation:

I currently have a Verizon Home Connect unit hooked up to a POTS type cordless phone set at my home. I ported the number to Verizon years and years ago. I use it for all the companies, and people, who I have to provide a phone number to but don't actually want to take phone calls from. I use my cell phone for family and work. I don't want it to bother me unless it is someone I actually have to communicate with.

My problem:

I am finding more and more that I need to have texting available on my home phone if I want to keep the separation of the lines. More services are wanting to text me a code or confirmation in order to use their web site or use a service. I do not want these companies to be able to blow up my cell phone constantly with "helpful" texts.

I have checked with Verizon and they told me that I cannot receive texts on the home connect line. So, I need to figure out a way to be able to get texts on the home phone line.

Possible solution:

Get an Android phone and use Cell2Jack to connect it to the house phones. That raises the following questions:

1) Is Cell2Jack any good? I haven't found much in terms of bad reviews, anyone have any experience with it here? Is there a better device?

2) What phone should I get? It needs to be Android (to run the app for Cell2Jack), have Bluetooth and be able to run on a network that works around here. It, basically, will sit plugged into power and occasionally be used to receive a text. I will probably have to install an app or two for authentications. I am thinking a used or refurbed cheap and cheerful unit. A used one with a weak battery could be real cheap, I suppose. But I am not up to date on phones, I am running a Pixel 2XL and use a Galaxy S5 as a media device. I have the rest of the family using Pixel 3s.

I'm looking for thoughts, experience and ideas. Thank you for taking the time to read this novel and for any input.
 
Last edited:
Port number to Google Voice, get an OBI telephone adapter.

Sent from my Lenovo TB-X606F using Tapatalk
 
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Thank you for the suggestion.

Unfortunately, many of the companies that use text messages as a 2 factor authentication will not allow Google Voice or other VOIP services. They require an actual cell provider.
 
I get that you want to receive verification texts from places and that does not work with the Verizon box.

What purpose does the analog landline-type phone serve for that?

I have never heard of Cell2Jack, and, as you say, reviews for it are sparse. Cordless phone systems with Link2Cell are known to work pretty well and do the same thing. The ones I know of are Panasonic. They probably cost more than $26.

For a cellphone to use as your loser-line with Verizon, it has to have VoLTE or they won't activate it even on MVNOs. I would not start with a phone with a dicey battery. Most phones will not run with a battery once it goes fully dead.

What service do you want to put the cellphone on?

You can't go far wrong with a HSN bundle phone for $60 and up. You get the phone and a year of service on Tracfone-Verizon. After the year you can get the phone unlocked from Tracfone and use it wherever you want.
 
Thank you for your response!

I get that you want to receive verification texts from places and that does not work with the Verizon box.

What purpose does the analog landline-type phone serve for that?

Since the phone isn't going to be carried, I like the convenience of the cordless handsets in different rooms (so I can look over and see who's calling) and the ability to use an answering machine instead of voicemail.

For a cellphone to use as your loser-line with Verizon, it has to have VoLTE or they won't activate it even on MVNOs. I would not start with a phone with a dicey battery. Most phones will not run with a battery once it goes fully dead.

Thanks for the heads up: I hadn't thought about whether a phone would work on shore power alone. VoLTE seems a pretty low bar these days. Even my Galaxy S5 apparently supports it. I'm thinking I may buy a refurb through Verizon for a couple hundred (I have Verizon cash to help lower the purchase price). Or, I could buy a used factory unlocked. That could give me options later...

What service do you want to put the cellphone on?

Initially, I thought it would be expensive to add a smartphone to my plan with Verizon, but it looks like it will be about the same cost as the Home Connect since I won't need additional data (the shared data will be beyond sufficient given its planned use and that it will be on wi-fi all the time) and I won't be insuring the phone. The only extra cost will be acquiring hardware to make it go.

I am also going to get a trial SIM from Boom! Mobile to see is AT&T has improved its coverage around here. A decade ago when I last tried them with a To Go Phone it was impossible to get a signal.

You can't go far wrong with a HSN bundle phone for $60 and up. You get the phone and a year of service on Tracfone-Verizon. After the year you can get the phone unlocked from Tracfone and use it wherever you want.

I don't know much about Tracfone or HSN. But, would I run into the porting from Verizon to a Verizon MVNO problem?
 
To follow up on this thread, here is what I ended up doing:

It turns out that the cost (including tax) for a smart phone added to an existing shared data plan is the same as the Home Connect, about $25 a month.

I purchased a used Pixel 3XL from GizmoTrader for $178 and activated it on my Verizon plan replacing the Home Connect device. I had to wait for a sim card from Verizon and call them to activate the phone. It is not possible to activate a new SIM on a new device for an existing phone line using their website. You have to call them.

I bought a Cell2Jack device from them directly and it paired easily with the phone. I installed the app from the Play Store. It was very simple.

Call quality is good for what it is. A bit better than the Home Connect, actually. Caller ID passes through to the POTS handsets which is nice. And, I can receive texts at the handset.

I put a timer on the phone charger to turn the charger on and off so the phone battery isn't being constantly charged.

I'm satisfied with the set up and I am pleased with both Cell2Jack and GizmoTrader. Both shipped quickly and delivered what they promised. I even bought another used cell for my daughter from GizmoTrader after the first one came as described.

If you have a use case for pairing your cell to POTS phone sets the Cell2Jack is definitely a good choice. And, if you need a used handset, GizmoTrader.com worked well for me.

I hope this information helps someone.
 
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To follow up on this thread, here is what I ended up doing:

It turns out that the cost (including tax) for a smart phone added to an existing shared data plan is the same as the Home Connect, about $25 a month.

I purchased a used Pixel 3XL from GizmoTrader for $178 and activated it on my Verizon plan replacing the Home Connect device. I had to wait for a sim card from Verizon and call them to activate the phone. It is not possible to activate a new SIM on a new device for an existing phone line using their website. You have to call them.

I bought a Cell2Jack device from them directly and it paired easily with the phone. I installed the app from the Play Store. It was very simple.

Call quality is good for what it is. A bit better than the Home Connect, actually. Caller ID passes through to the POTS handsets which is nice. And, I can receive texts at the handset.

I put a timer on the phone charger to turn the charger on and off so the phone battery isn't being constantly charged.

I'm satisfied with the set up and I am pleased with both Cell2Jack and GizmoTrader. Both shipped quickly and delivered what they promised. I even bought another used cell for my daughter from GizmoTrader after the first one came as described.

If you have a use case for pairing your cell to POTS phone sets the Cell2Jack is definitely a good choice. And, if you need a used handset, GizmoTrader.com worked well for me.

I hope this information helps someone.

Thanks for the update. Interesting to know that the Cell2Jack works well.
 
My Positive Experience with Cell2Jack

I currently subscribe to 2 VOIP providers, Loacalphone and Callcentric. Callcentric is very reliable, and can always send a FAX without errors. Localphone is cheap/inexpensive ($1.60/month for 800 outgoing minutes) and good for general calling. I currently use a Cisco SPA122 and OBi200 ATA. Everything here works OK.

But recently I also became intrigued witih Cell2Jack. It work with most landline telephones, and allows them to function similarly to Panasonic's Link2Cell technology. I like the synergy this product offers, between my existing VTech cordless phone system (5-handsets) and my 2 cellphones. After testing, I posted my Cell2Jack experience and feedback as a comprehensive 18-minute slideshow on YouTube. To watch, search YouTube for "Tips Before Buying Cell2Jack". Hope you guys find it helpful. :)
 
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