Obi Hai Ships OBi1032 IP Phone

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OBi1032-SIP-PhoneObi Hai has been around a long while. Their niche has been ATA-like devices that were sufficiently sophisticated to provide hardware access to Google Voice. As was discussed when they appeared on VUC, the founders of the company were in involved in the earliest days of VoIP. More specifically, they were behind the development of Cisco ATA 186, the very first ATA.

In years past I’ve watched as others have expressed their enthusiasm for the OBi Hai ATAs, especially those who were trying to leverage Google Voice. GV has never been a significant factor in my working life.

Further, I’ve long held that ATA’s  fail to offer many of the advantages of a bone fide IP phone. I do admit that OBi Hai was quite aggressive about extending the capabilities of the humble ATA beyond the demands of the typical ITSP. Nonetheless, ATAs have held little interest for me in recent years.

Last week they announced that they are starting to ship their first IP phone, the OBi1032. The first of their 1000 Series phones, the Obi1032 has a respectable feature list;

  • 4.3” true color LCD display (480x 272 pixels, not touch)
  • 6 SIP account registrations
  • 12 line appearances
  • side-car support
  • (2) USB 2.0 ports –> Supports use of optional OBi Wifi adapter & OBi BT adapter
  • 3.5mm headset jack
  • RJ9 jack for headset+EHS
  • (2) 10/100 Ethernet jacks
  • 802.11af Power-over-Ethernet support
  • Support for HDVoice via G.722 now, support for OPUS planned
  • 5-way conferencing on-board
  • Sophisticated provisioning & customization

Offered via Amazon for $199, this is the entry level model, designated “Manager” with a more sophisticated “Professional” model to follow. At that price point the 1032 faces some healthy competition. However, as a company with deep experience in SIP and a singular focus on SIP end-points, they could get some traction despite an already crowded market.