As you may be aware, I removed all of the Obihai-related articles on this blog in protest of Obihai’s decision to attempt to charge users an additional $10 support fee in order to get firmware updates, and I no longer recommend Obihai devices. However, if you previously purchased an Obihai and find that you need to upgrade the firmware in order to continue using Google Voice, this Reddit thread explains how to do it without paying the $10. But before you do anything else, first try dialing * * * 6 from a phone that’s connected to your Obihai device, since you might be able to upgrade the firmware that way (although that’s not likely if you are still using username and password authentication for Google Voice). If that doesn’t work, try the instructions found here:
Read this before you pay $10 to Obihai for support (Reddit)
(Also posted at DSLReports: *** READ THIS before you pay $10 to Obihai for support ***)
The first post in the thread, from Reddit user Mango123456, reads as follows:
Obihai’s $10 support fee is optional. If you wish to avoid it, you can update your firmware manually to save the $10 support fee. This solves the May 2016 problem of Google Voice not working on OBi100/OBi110.
1a) If you have an OBi100/OBi110, follow the directions to update your firmware manually. Thanks to taoman54, rchandra, yorktown, and others who contributed to this.
1b) If you have an OBi200/OBi202, you can download the latest version of the 2xx firmware here (thanks taoman54).
2) If you cannot manually update your firmware because you do not know your OBi ATA’s admin password, follow the directions to factory reset your OBi ATA.
Please note: the links http://fw.obihai.com/OBi-latest.fw http://fw.obihai.com/OBi2-latest.fw are not the latest versions any more. At the time of this post, they are builds 2872 and 5110 respectively.
Note that if you are reading this article after May, 2016 there might be newer versions of the firmware available (particularly for the OBi 200 series models) but after you have installed the correct firmware from one of the above links, you should be able to get any later firmware updates by dialing * * * 6 from a phone connected to the Obihai device.
EDIT (January/May 2018): Obihai has completely dropped support for the OBi100 and OBi110 models, and at some point Google Voice connectivity stopped working for some users. If you have such a device, you MAY be able to get Google Voice connectivity working again with Crowdsourced updates for Obihai ATAs and IP Phones. I have NOT tested these personally, so have no idea how well they work – they may restore full Google Voice connectivity to your OBi100 or OBi110, or they may turn it into a paperweight (hopefully not the latter, but I just don’t know, and I take no responsibility if it doesn’t work as intended). Obviously in this case it would not be prudent to pay Obihai for support, since they do not support those models anymore in any case, and would prefer you just buy a newer model despite the fact that the old ones usually continue to work perfectly well. And buying a new unit from Obihai really isn’t a solution either, since you don’t know if or when they will come out with yet a newer model and drop support for the current models. For more current information about alternative firmware for Obihai devices, see the ObiHAI Obi100/Obi110 Firmware Mod Discussion and/or the Obihai OBi200/202/302 + OBi1022/1032/1062 firmware mods thread at DSLReports. FreePBX and Asterisk users that wish to continue using Google Voice after Google drops XMPP support should go here: How to use Google Voice with FreePBX and Asterisk without using XMPP or buying new hardware. (END EDIT.)
Why would you even need this? Well, the basic problem is that Google Voice (and all Google services really) have become very security-conscious lately, and if you or someone else tries to access your account in a way that Google doesn’t like, Google will force you to change your password, and your Obihai may stop working for Google Voice until you do. But once you change the password, the OBiTalk web configuration portal won’t allow you to change the Google Voice password on your Obihai device in the usual manner without paying the $10
extortion support fee to Obihai. There are two ways around that, one is to go into the Expert Configuration settings and change the password there (which doesn’t require payment, but the method for doing this might not be obvious to an Obihai user), and the other is to upgrade the Obihai firmware as described in the Reddit thread, in order to use oAuth authentication, which does not change if the Google account password changes. BUT, if you upgrade to oAuth you must to delete and recreate your Google Voice settings in the OBiTalk portal, but from then on you should not have any problems even if Google again requires you to change your password at some point in the future.
There are also persistent rumors, but they are still only rumors or more likely just speculation, that at some point Google Voice will stop allowing password authentication and force everyone to use oAuth, which would require the firmware update to be installed. However, that has not happened yet. Even if you aren’t ready to do a firmware upgrade now, you may want to download the firmware and save it someplace you can find it. You might want to do that just in case you ever do need to upgrade, and the links in that post are no longer working.