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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My house receives internet via t-Mobile 5G wifi. There are no ethernet jacks in the house. There are also no phone lines or phone jacks in the house. All phones are mobile phones and they connect to the home wifi network and also to LTE.

I want to buy a home answering machine that I would connect as a VOIP line. Is there such a piece of hardware? All answering machines I am aware of plug into a phone jack (or perhaps an ethernet jack). If there is such a device, what are the properties I look for when I buy?
 

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Hi, and welcome to TSG.

If you are only using mobile phones, does your wireless carrier offer voicemail for each phone's number?

Unless you have signed up for some kind of cloud-based VoIP service, you do not have a VoIP number to be used for incoming calls to a VoIP phone or any kind of VoIP answering machine.

EDIT:
There are no ethernet jacks in the house.
Look on the back of your T-Mobile WiFi Gateway. You may find two Ethernet ports.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you, Chuck. 1. I have an answering machine/phone in my old house that is connected to AT&T VOIP. That phone plugs into a voice jack, which that house has. I can bring it to my new house that only has t-Mobile wifi. 2. My t-Mobile modem not only has two ethernet ports (a reset port and a LAN port) but it has an RJ-11 voice port.

Can I just plug my old answering machine into the voice port? Or, would that work if I then notify AT&T of the new location (the two houses are nearby). Or, would this work if I then switch this VOIP line to t-Mobile?

I haven't tried this yet because my t-Mobile Nokia 5G21 modem is VERY SENSITIVE to location. It is currently located high up on a wall in a closet, the only place where I was previously able to get a strong enough wifi signal. If you tell me that using this modem might work for the answering machine, I could try again to relocate the modem to a more convenient location and then plug in the answering machine.
 

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Can I just plug my old answering machine into the voice port?
Unfortunately, T-Mobile does not support using the voice port on the 5G21.

This makes me suspect that T-Mobile does not offer VoIP landline-like service at this time.

If that is the case, you could look into a VoIP service like magicJack or Ooma (or some other VoIP company) and transfer your AT&T number to that service. The service would provide an interface device that would connect to the Ethernet port on the 5G21 and has a single voice jack that can be split to connect an analog (POTS) phone and answering machine. I believe that Ooma offers a WiFi-connected interface device if the phone and answering machine are not very close to the 5G21 gateway. NOTE: I am not familiar with magicJack or Ooma beyond what I read on the Internet and am in no position to recommend any given service.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
This makes a LOT of sense. Thank you. It also helps explain why t-Mobile tech support said they didn't have any hardware that would work for me and they didn't know of a solution. I'll start researching Ooma and other services. And... if I am lucky, AT&T supports the Ethernet port on the 5G21, and my existing anwering machine will actually work. I'll try it before I go exotic with Ooma.
 

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if I am lucky, AT&T supports the Ethernet port on the 5G21
I am fairly certain that AT&T does not offer any kind of residential VoIP service at this time. No matter what VoIP service provider you choose, you will need some type of interface box between the analog phone devices and the Ethernet port or WiFi access point on the 5G21.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I think you are right about needing an interface that doesn't exist. That was the question I was trying to ask, and it is now answered. Thank you.

We have decided to give up the VOIP line. It is a phone number we have had for 45 years! But, we are ready do without it. That will also eiminate a LOT of scam callers that we have collected over the years.

By the way... We have temporarily plugged the phone back in at the old house. It has VOIP and is serviced by Specturm. AT&T runs lines in our new neighborhood (which is why I mentioned them) but Spectrum does not.
 

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I think you are right about needing an interface that doesn't exist.
AT&T and T-Mobile do not offer VoIP interface devices, but Ooma and magicJack list products on their websites with a VoIP Ethernet to analog POTS interface. You would need to investigate further if you do decide to keep your old landline number and port it from AT&T to Ooma, magicJack, or some other VoIP service provider.
 
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