Making an entrance

It’s not all digital TV here; there are lots of other handy gadgets, and an ongoing project is switching my telephone line over internet telephony. That’s largely come about because BT’s prices for the ISDN line that I use are ridiculous – I pay around £150 a quarter in rental, and £20 a quarter in calls. Bonkers!

However, one of the reasons I persisted with it for ages was the need to keep my phone numbers, and useful features like the entry phone being integrated with my phone system. That was fine until in January the phone system died, leaving me to bodge something up as an interim measure, while I move everything over to VoIP – a process that I’ll be blogging more about as it happens.

TeleDor entry phone
The TeleDor-2N outside my flat

Meanwhile, with the good weather, I wanted to get the entry phone working again, and happened across the Dorcom website, where they had a few items on special offer. The gadget pictured is now installed outside my front door, replacing the old entry phone and keypad.

What’s it for? Well, press the big button and like any entry phone, it lets me know there’s someone at the door. However the TeleDor-2N, as it’s catchily known, links not to a dedicated handset, but to a phone line. In my case, it’s plugged into the back of a FritzBox 7270 which is presently working as my phone system. So, press the button, and it rings on my cordless phone, enabling me to answer the front door when I’m in the garden, or the bath, and unlock the door by pressing 00.

There are other tricks too — when I go to the corner shop, I don’t have to take my keys. I just key in a code number when I get home. If I have to go out, I could put a note asking delivery men to press 02* and it’ll phone my neighbours, to see if they can take the delivery for me. I can even open the door from my mobile phone.

Ok, so it’s overkill for quite a lot of people, but a handy gadget. Over coming weeks, I’ll explain more about how I shall be saving around £50 a month by ditching my expensive ISDN line and routing all my phone calls over the net.

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