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Ooma Wants to Kill Bill... Your Phone Bill

Techstination feature for Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Ooma wants to kill bill. Your phone bill. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Ooma is the name of a new Internet based phone service with a twist. There is no monthly bill. You only have to pay for international calls...and those are typically just a couple of cents per minute. You buy a small Ooma box for about 400 dollars, plug it into your Internet router, plug a regular or cordless phone system into the box and you're done. You can have the system configured to use your existing phone number, or get a new one. CEO Andrew Frame...

"You know we have a lot of expertise from Apple and Cisco, we've got about 65 employees now, pretty much some of the best in the industry in terms of creating simple consumer experiences. We put a lot of effort into making it plug and play. It doesn't look like there's much technology there, but that's exactly what we were going for."

The Ooma box serves as an answering machine....but you can also listen to voice mail via the Web and receive notifications by email. The system...transparent to the user...connects calls by linking box to box and routing them through local lines. Among those involved in the actor Ashton Kutcher, listed as creative director. To help make money, Frame says there will be new add on services....

"They're very high value for consumers. And they're going to be priced fairly."

You can find more information at Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.