Three steps: Instant home phone line
Skype could do a better job of organizing its site to explain how to use it for home phone service. Here are the relevant pages:
Click here to download Skype.
Click here to subscribe to unlimited calling.
Without a monthly plan, you can use the SkypeOut service to call other phones, where you pay about two to three cents per minute. We opted for the Skype unlimited plan for about $3/month. You get a discount if you pay for a year in advance.
Click here to get a phone number for inbound calls
We even got a phone number for our area code. Skype lets you pick your phone number, so I opted for one ending in 007.
If you install the iPhone Skype app, calls to your Skype number will ring through to your iPhone while you're on 3G/4G. (Your computer will also ring.)
While you're on Skype, you won't lose any of your cellphone minutes.
We also use Skype voicemail, a couple Skype phones and a webcam.
Click here to set up Skype voicemail.
Skype voicemail lets you browse your voicemail from any internet-connected device.
Skype phones and converting landline phones.
My Grandma has to be able to use our home phone. So, we bought a standalone Skype phone on amazon for her.
We use also old iPhones and iPods as wi-fi Skype phones.
If you have an old telephone that you'd like to plug into Skype, you can use the Eforcity USB Phone Adapter:
Get a webcam for Skype video calling.
My parents use a Logitech HD Webcam C310 so that they can "play" with their grandkids on Skype: