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Innovage talking caller ID LCD touch-panel phone.

$ 9.99 - sometimes you get what you pay for...

    Second rant of the day. First one is here.

Innovage talking caller ID LCD touch-panel phone.     A talking phone for ten bucks? I had to get it. Actually, I tried to get cute on this one. I have a phone already. The caller ID feature works on it but it's impossible to see more than three or four of the numbers. Somehow the LED readout that shows the caller's name and number became fractured over the years. I know "fractured" probably isn't the right word to use, but I don't know what else to call it. Broken numbers, busted up digits. Digital letters and numbers are put together using segments. The number "2," for instance, might take five small segments of line to produce. If three of those line segments are missing, a number two doesn't look like a number two anymore. It could be anything... a "5," a "7," anything.

Innovage talking caller ID LCD touch-panel phone - 2.     So I tried to get cute. I bought the talking caller ID phone at Harbor Freight for $9.99 and set it up right next to my existing phone (which still has a lot of good features that I want to keep). It seemed like a pretty good plan at the time. The new phone for the caller ID (talking caller ID, no less), and my existing phone for everything else. In a manner of speaking you could even say that I'd "fixed" my old phone system for ten dollars.

    Well, as the subtitle says: Sometimes you get what you pay for. Buy a ten dollar phone and you get a ten dollar phone. The talking caller ID works, but it's painfully slow and only gives you the phone number of the person calling, not their name. The numbers appear on screen one by one with a long one-second pause between each. The computer generated voice verbalizes the numbers aloud at the same slow speed. The full number is displayed, area code included. The phone literally rang eight times before enough of the number had been displayed to see who was calling. As a caller ID, talking or not, this phone is completely useless.

    No AC wall adapter either. This phone operates on three "AA" batteries and that's it. No other options for power supply. The plastic cover holding the batteries in place was broken and would not stay shut. The batteries would spill out each time I moved the phone, which fortunately wasn't very often (I moved it just enough to get it back in the box so I could return it for a refund). I like Harbor Freight but they dropped the ball big time with this one. Cheap is good but only if there's a little Quality Control added to the mix. If I owned Innovage, the company that manufactures this phone, I'd be embarrassed to put it on the market. It's that bad.

    Two thumbs down from this reviewer.


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