Saturday, December 3, 2011

How To Use VoIP on Various WiFi Only Android Devices

So you have an Android device like the Samsung Galaxy Player 4.0 or 5.0 and you want to use that device to make phone calls when connected to WiFi?  Here, we will show you how.
In this post we are specifically dealing with the Samsung Galaxy Player 4.0 but any Android device with a built-in microphone that is running Android OS version 2.1 or later should be able to make VoIP calls as well.  You can also configure your Android phone as well to help conserve your minutes from your mobile carrier (Note: doing this may violate your customer agreement with certain carriers).

Configure Google Voice Account:

  1. You will need a Google Voice phone number tied to the same gmail account you are using with your device.  Using a computer, follow the link HERE to set up a Google Voice number if you do not already have one.  If you already have a Google Voice number go ahead and sign in.
  2. From your inbox, click on the settings button on the right side of the screen.  Under the “Phones” tab, make sure to check the box to forward calls to Google Chat.

Download and Install the Following Apps On Your Android Device:

  1. Go to the Android Market and install the “Google Voice” application (free).
  2. You will also need to purchase an app called “GrooVe IP”.  Information on the GrooVe IP application can be found HERE (currently cost $4.99 in the market).
  3. Open each application and sign in using your Google Voice username and password.

How This Works:

  • Google Voice will be used to send and receive text messages.  It can also be used to view (in plain text) or listen to voice mail messages left by callers.
  • GrooVe IP is what allows you to make and receive calls using your Google Voice account.  This application includes a stand alone phone dialer which is incredibly useful on a WiFi only device that does not include a native dialer application.
  • There are many options and settings in the GrooVe IP application that you can adjust to make phone calls work properly and optimize performance for your device.  Every device may have slight or even drastically different settings required for proper operation.  The developer of this application has a lot of useful information on their website found HERE.

Trial & Error is Key:

Make plenty of test calls because to a few different numbers to tweak the settings and ensure the best possible performance.  Make note of your settings as well as what worked and what did not work.  Enjoy!

Please feel free to post your experiences below.  List the name of your device as well as any settings you had to adjust.  For the device I was using these are the settings that worked for me:
  • Device:  Samsung Galaxy Player 4.0
  • Notes:  I could hear callers with the stock settings but the experience was better for myself as well as the people on the other end when Voice Synchronization was turned on.  I tried to turn Audio Processing on first but callers said I sounded muffled and robotic, plus there was a delay of approximately 5-6 seconds.  I have found that the shortest voice delay I can achieve is 2-3 seconds which may seem like a lot but in normal conversation, it works quite well.


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