TOVO T1000 – WiFi phone
Tesco direct (their online service) have been [offering a number of cheap wifi phones] recently (including the Tovo T1000). I have been after just the thing recently, though I’d rather it have worked with Skype I did not mind particularly.It is also much cheaper than its competitors so with a bit of a push from my girlfriend I went and ordered it.
It came the other day but I got my first chance to play with it today… In short argh(!) but wooh!
OK, the Tovo service seems absolutely abysmal. It just does not work out of the box at all. The actually hardware of the phone though is pretty nice albeit like a late 90s Nokia (but I kinda like that). After about 10 minutes I had it working on my network and a few minutes later I was logged into the phone via a web browser on my computer. I was quite pleased with that. Then the fun and bloody annoyingness stated. The Tovo website is so incredibly slow it makes a 56K modem look fast. Anyway, I went through the registration procedure and that all seemed fine – put in my details on the phone… and nothing. Nothing at all. The test line just took me to some automated response “this account is not activated” or some s**te like that. I played around with various different settings and hunted around the tovo website to no avail. I came to the conclusion that I should use another service provider. Personally I would have loved to have used skype but that doesn’t work with [SIP]. So I did a bit of trawling and decided that [callwithus.com] would do the trick… and indeed it did (I actually spent about an hour trying to get other services to work and I’m not sure what I was doing wrong with them but I have a few ideas). Callwithus definitely had the most useful help ([config page]) including a “what someone else has done” [screen grab] this is for the UTstarcom which is the same model, just the tovo is a re badged version). Also another good reference point (which I had found earlier but forgot about during most of the above is: [www.skifactz.com] – its darn useful!).
Once I was using callwithus things went quite smoothly (to run an echo test you just have to call – 3246) and then I added a couple of quid onto my account and 1p a minute local line calls was at hand. I call my parents to test it out and all was well. The audio quality is pretty good (my mom tends to moan about this with Skype and didn’t say a word, so it must be good!).
The only thing I need todo with it now is to get a local number associated with my account, which I will do later – once I’ve done this I’ve got everything I wanted from it.
In short the phone is cheap, well worth it… TOVO is not worth the time spent but with the handset you are free to use other services. If you do so it will work and once you get over a few hiccups it works well. In the end I expect this will be a well spent 20 quid.
Here are a few useful links: