UPDATE: iinet BoB is no longer the only modem in the iinet family. BoB Lite has been released! It doesn’t have all the features of the original BoB – but it is still a 4 port, wireless, VoIP enabled, ADSL2+ modem for a super cheap price. For more info please read our iinet BoB Lite review. BoB2 has also been released – for more info please read our BoB2 Review.
At first glance, BoB looks like a 4 port wireless modem with a phone handset to use with Naked DSL VoIP. But when you look a little deeper it’s far more than that. BoB is a fantastic All in One device which is super easy to set up and includes a stack of great features. Here are five important BoB features:
#1 - BoB is incredibly easy to set up. You just plug it in and it automatically configures itself with your iinet broadband account and settings. All you need to do is plug the power cord into the wall and the phone cable into the wall socket. BoB works just fine on Apple Mac too.
#2 - BoB has 4 ethernet ports and has excellent wireless range, in fact up to twice the range of standard 802.11g wireless modems and also faster wireless data transmissions at 300Mbps.
#3 - BoB has two high speed USB ports. One of the ports is labelled “storage/3G” and has several impressive features. Firstly you can plug in a USB hard drive or flash drive into BoB and all files will be shared throughout your wireless network. Secondly you can plug in a 3G USB modem (dongle) so you can share your wireless broadband connection between multiple devices if you need to. There will be a future firmware upgrade to enable this technology.
#4 - The second USB port is labelled “charge” and you can charge your mobile phones, portable music players or anything that charges through a USB cable.
#5 - BoB looks great! This might not be the most important feature, but it’s a good one nonetheless. Most wireless modems which are used for Naked DSL VoIP have an antenna sticking out the top of them. The phone handsets don’t match the modem colour and overall it can be a pretty ugly mess. BoB on the other hand has a great, slick design with no external antenna and the handset matches just beautifully.
iinet Plans for BoB
BoB is made especially for Naked DSL – which is fast ADSL2+ broadband without having to pay line rental every month! iinet Naked DSL includes a free VoIP account with unlimited calls to landlines in Australia. With iinet you can also transfer your Telstra landline phone number to VoIP.
BoB is a VoIP modem and integrates perfectly with iinet VoIP so you can make phone calls with a BoB handset or your own handset. The iinet Naked DSL plans start at $59.95 per month.
You don’t have to get a BoB modem to get iinet’s Naked DSL service. Other ADSL2+ VoIP modem brands like Billion, Open Networks, Netgear and Netcomm will work fine with iinet. But they will require some configuration at the time of set up. On the other hand BoB comes pre-configured and is extremely easy to set up.
If for some reason you don’t want to go Naked, you can use BoB with ADSL2+ if you like and retain your landline phone service.
If you already have your own phone handsets then they will likely be compatible with BoB. If you buy a handset with BoB, then it comes with the charging unit inbuilt.
You also don’t have to use BoB with VoIP. You can use your standard PSTN phone line if you would like. But if you use iinet ADSL2+ with VoIP, then BoB will make calls by default using VoIP and will revert to PSTN if your internet connection drops out.
If you get iinet Naked DSL, which comes with a free VoIP account and unlimited local and national calls, BoB will work just fine as your all in one modem, wireless router and VoIP handset base.
The iinet BoB modem is also NOT locked to iinet, so you can easily change the settings and use it with another ISP if you want to.
So how much does BoB cost? BoB is made by Belkin, the high quality modem and router supplier, so it’s not budget equipment. BoB is a highly featured device that will offer you far more than a standard 4 port wireless router. If you want a handset, then it’s $269 on a 24 month plan. Without a handset it’s $209. Additional handsets are $69 each.
If you are after the cheapest modem possible, then BoB isn’t for you. Simply sign up with iinet and select the BYO modem option and get a modem from elsewhere. But if you are after a well-featured, smart looking modem that is extremely easy to set up, then BoB is a great choice.