Marry your home and cell phones with Xlink

Xtreme Technology integrates the home phone system with the cell phone.

Xtreme Technology

A few years ago, I bought a fancy home phone so I could set it to forward calls to my cell. Not long after, I found a better and cheaper solution by ditching the landline completely.

I am not alone. According to Nielsen, 17 percent of U.S. households--some 20 million homes--are without a wired telephone, instead relying solely on mobile phones.

This brings up a question of what we should do with that fancy home phone. I do miss the comfort of using the big handset rather than fumbling on the tiny, onscreen keyboard of my iPhone.

Xtreme Technology has an answer. It recently announced two new Xlink Bluetooth gateways, the Xlink BT and the Xlink BTTN, that allow you to use your regular telephone to handle your cell phone service.

Both gateways let you take cell calls on your landline phone and support up to three Bluetooth-enabled mobile handsets. The new XLink BT, however, is for those without a landline service, like me, while the XLink BTTN lets you take your landline calls on your mobile phone and vice-versa.

I don't care much for the Xlink BTTN but the Xlink BT would definitely do, at least by letting my cell charge while I can still talk. And when I get mad, I wouldn't risk smashing my beloved headset on the ground.

The new Xlink BT and BTTN cost $80 and $110, respectively. They also come with optional unlimited long distance calling for $25 a month, which is expensive compared with other options out there. I would recommend having long-distance calling incorporated on your cell phone plan.

About the author

CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews 3D printers, networking/storage devices, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.


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