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Basic Features

The BTS consists of a base station, which contains the cordless phone base station and VoIP ATA (Analog Telephone Adapter) and two handsets along with charging bases for each handset, cables and the other odds and ends shown in Figure 1. The rear of the base contains a single WAN and LAN port each, which also means that there's a router built in to ease installation in the case of single-computer broadband installations.

In the box

Figure 1: In the box

The power jack is on the bottom of the base and Message Waiting, In Use and Ready lights adorn the front, along with a Page button that when pressed makes both handsets squawk so that you can find where you left them.

The handset is pretty much like most other cordless handsets with the features shown in Figure 2. Note the built-in speakerphone, which, if you're like me, you'll use more than you may think. The screen has a greenish-yellow backlighting and has a decent viewing angle range.

Handset features

Figure 2: Handset features
(click image to enlarge)

As with other Vonage co-branded hardware products, you won't find the BTS on Vonage's website. Instead, you go to a Vonage retailer or etailer, purchase the hardware, then activate it with Vonage. This may be a bit confusing, but this way everyone (VTech, Vonage and the retailer) gets their proper slice of your hard-earned cash.

Although theoretically, the phone could be used with any VoIP service, the product packaging clearly states that the phone is "compatible only with Vonage service". So given Vonage's policy of not unlocking devices, don't get any ideas about using the phone if you decide to switch to another VoIP provider. And forget about using it as a "normal" cordless phone - there's no RJ11 jack to allow a PSTN (regular old phone) connection.

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