Scripps News Life


Here’s How To Transform A Landline Telephone So It Can Take Calls From Your Cellphone

Here’s How To Transform A Landline Telephone So It Can Take Calls From Your Cellphone
Posted at 7:40 AM, Aug 10, 2022

The products and services mentioned below were selected independent of sales and advertising. However, Simplemost may receive a small commission from the purchase of any products or services through an affiliate link to the retailer's website.

While cellphones allow us to stay tuned into world events, text friends, use a flashlight, play a game and stay generally stay entertained, making phone calls is often at the bottom of our regular to-do list. Do you miss the charm of old vintage phones— the way the receiver felt when cradled between your ear and shoulder or how you could wrap the spiral cord around your finger as you spoke? Now you can turn your old phone into a Bluetooth receiver to make it send and receive cellphone calls.

If you’ve been feeling sentimental about the pre-digital call age or want to experience it for the first time, you don’t need to sign up for a landline service. You just need an old phone, the kind that you would hook into a landline to get started. It could be a push-button or rotary.

Use A Specialized Jack To Connect Phones

Start by grabbing your old-school phone. Search your basement or attic, browse thrift stores or flea markets or simply click around on eBay. From the push-button models of the 1980s to the classic black rotary phones to the popular Swatch twin phone of the late ’80s, any type will do the trick.

Next you’ll need to purchase a specialized jack, such as Cell2Jack. This little device is designed to connect any landline phone to a cellphone. You’ll plug your home phone into Cell2Jack’s phone port and plug Cell2Jack’s other end into a USB port. Pick up your old phone and press #*# from its keypad to pair it. Activate your Bluetooth on your cellphone and search for Cell2Jack. Hit “Select.” When your cell connects, the red light will stop flashing and turn solid. Voila, you should be in business.

Cell2Jack currently costs $31 on its website, or you can purchase it for $36 on Amazon.

Here’s the company’s video on how to use Cell2Jack:

You could always purchase an XLink Bluetooth Gateway instead. You simply plug your old phone into the gateway before powering the gateway up. Then, push the start button on the top of the XLink to turn it on and then sync your cellphone to it. After that, you should be ready to receive and dial calls from your “old” phone.

The XLink product can link up to two landline phones. It also automatically connects your cellphones if they’re within range of the Bluetooth signal. It’s pricier than the Cell2Jack option with an $89.99 price tag.


What To Expect When You Turn A Landline Phone Into A Bluetooth Receiver

Your new phone has the same telephone number as your cellphone. As soon as someone calls, you’ll experience hearing those (usually real) bells chime when your old school rotary phone rings, rather than the digital tune on your cellphone. You might also be shocked at how loud those phones used to ring, especially compared to how quiet cellphones can be!

Additionally, your caller ID will show your cellphone number to those you call. That’s because your cell is the one actually making the connection. And yes, you’ll also hear an old-fashioned dial tone.


Enjoy Richer Sound And The Nostalgia Factor

After setting either of these devices up, play around by making some phone calls. You might instantly be transported back to a childhood memory of turning the rotary dial to call your best friend or simply enjoy the satisfaction of pushing the thick buttons down. If you have a kid, wow them by showing them how phones used to work!

You might be surprised at how much better voices sound through POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service). This is because cellphones convert sound into electrical signals and send it far away and then quickly convert it back into sounds. Cellphones also eliminate certain frequencies while boosting others, but can make voices sound compressed and robot-like. Classic telephones provide richer-type sounds with a more natural feel because they don’t have the space restrictions that digital phones have.


So if you’re nostalgic for the good old days and miss slamming down the phone in the heat of the moment, dust off your old Conair transparent phone and try this nifty little trick!

This story originally appeared on Simplemost. Checkout Simplemost for additional stories.