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T-Mobile WiFi Phone

In the midst of the iPhone craze I just read that T-Mobile launched a WiFi enabled phone that can seamlessly switch to WiFi calls from the mobile network when an access point is detected. The new service is called hotspot@home. The introduction of the iPhone is a big leap for the mobile phone experience, but to me, this new service from T-Mobile presents much more value than a feature-rich device ever can.

I've been playing with the popular open-source Asterisk platform for more than two years. The biggest issues so far have not been the technology, but the ability to integrate my various means of voice communication. I have a mobile phone, Skype, Asterisk server for our business, and a home phone. Aside from some complex routing and annoying maintenance, there is no easy way to bring it all together. Although the T-Mobile service does not solve this problem completely, it's a big step in the right direction. With this new service, I could essentially drop my home phone line without having to worry about poor reception or expensive phone bills.

The thought that WiFi VoIP will eventually replace mobile operators has been on the minds of many people. This is the first step from a major carrier that I have heard of. I'm really impressed by T-Mobile's forward thinking approach. The only problem is that the devices are awful, which brings us back to the iPhone I guess :)