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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Virtual phone Number Google Step1

Setting up a Sipgate account is a pretty familiar process, and less intensive then, say, Virtual phone Number Google. Here's the abbreviated walkthrough: Head to the Sipgate One site and click the "Sign up now" button. You'll be asked to provide your cellphone number and carrier, then get a text message with a short verification code.
After filling it in, you'll be asked to provide some information: name, address, email, and a password. The email must be real and used, because you'll use it to verify your account further. The address, if you don't love the idea of giving it away, can be relative—it's used primarily to pin down your location and figure out which area codes you'd want.
About those area codes—Sipgate doesn't offer all of them. In fact, in upstate New York, Sipgate only offered 518 and 845, and after selecting 518, it turns out Sipgate plum ran out. I had to pretend like I lived in San Diego to pin down a number, but since this is a software phone and I'm connecting through my proper google virtual phone, it didn't really matter to me. Your mileage may vary, but your friends and contacts are only calling your google virtual phone number free, which then rings you on your computer, so the actual number doesn't matter all that much.
Once you've picked out and confirmed your number, you'll be asked to download and install the software. I'd recommend just downloading, but not yet installing and launching the Sipgate desktop software. Respond to your email activation message, and keep moving through the setup process.
You'll eventually arrive at a screen where you'll have to pin down an exact address, for what I've reasoned is the inclusion of E-911 data with the phone number Sipgate is issuing you. Depending on the area you're trying to obtain a phone number in, you may end up with a failure message indicating that there are no numbers available for the address and area code you picked out. This is how I ended up virtually moving to San Diego. Be sure to pick out the options indicated for a free.
Head into your Sipgate settings by signing in (upper right corner) at, then clicking "Settings" in the upper-right corner. In the default "Phone" section, you'll likely see the cellphone you provided as linked to your account. Mouse over that cellphone, and select either "Delete device" (which most of us can safely do), or "Deactivate" (if you think you might pull off some fancy voip virtual phone number tricks in the future). Either way, you want "Phone of (Your Name)" to be the primary call taker, since that's your Sipgate number. If Sipgate bugs you to set up routing to your phone, go ahead and click the link to do so. Your Sipgate routing setup should, in the end, be very simple—one phone number rings one (virtual) phone.
There's one last area to address inside Sipgate, because the service tends to capture its incoming calls with its own voicemail system, rather than letting virtual phone number google pick up the unanswered call. Head into Sipgate's voicemail, call forwarding and hunting rules.
To put it simply, you're going to clear out everything—any forwarding rules, the basic voicemail condition, all of it. When you're done, this settings area should look like the example at left, with Sipgate indicating "You have not set up voicemail or call forwarding" for either your number or your account.
Once that's done, you could log into your Sipgate software and test it out by calling your new number from a cellphone or landline, but you don't need to—we're going to have Google Voice call you anyways, to connect your number.

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