I said to my wife, “I believe my problem is I have current and future communication complexity”. She said “w*nker”. I said “I’ve got a phone problem” so she said, “then fix it”.
1. I work out of 3 offices (that’s including the kitchen table at home).
2. At one of my offices, I am not the primary tenant so the phone gets answered with another company’s name.
3. I believe that at some stage in the nearish future I will be moving offices.
4. I don’t just want to be handing out a mobile number all the time, as I feel that its like walking around with a t-shirt saying “small-time”.
What to do?
The answer was SkypeIn. I’ve heard of Skype you say, but whats SkypeIn ?
– Firstly you get a free Skype account that allows you to make free computer to computer calls.
– This isn’t a tutorial on how to use skype, so skip to the next step.
– Next you buy yourself a local number from Skype. They call this service SkypeIn. In real terms this is going to cost you under $100 a year.
– You connect the phone number to your skype address (it simple, and done via their online control panel).
– Finally you decide what you want to do with the calls you receive.
Option A. Take the phone calls on your computer.
If you don’t answer the call (eg you are away from your desk) the calls can automatically go to your voicemail system.
The other choice is that if you don’t answer the calls, you can have them forwarded to another phone (small perminute cost for this) such as your mobile.
Option B. Forward calls to your skype phone number to the office of wherever you are or your mobile.
A couple of cool things about this solution.
1. People see a landline number, not a mobile or weird address. Eg Mine is 03 9014 9600
2. If you are overseas, local people call your local number and get charged for a local call, despite the fact you might routing the number to a village in Siberia.
3. You can have local numbers in lots of areas in the world – Want to setup a virtual office in San Francisco?
4. Finally if you are like me, and using lots of computers, you can login to your skype account with any of the computers.
There are lots of other good ways of using the skypein number but the above are what appeals to me.
The solution appeals to the wife as well as now she only has to call one number to find me.