Sunday, August 30, 2009

A phone without paying the phone company - Introducing GUAVA

If you've wanted a phone where you could make calls, receive calls, send SMS and receive SMS without paying a monthly or per minute fee then try GUAVA. Here's what you need:
- Gizmo5 software
- Google Voice account
- Android phone
- GUAVA android software

Step 1: Download free Gizmo5 software for your computer. This will allow you to create a free account. Once installed go to and write down your 10 digit 747 number beginning with 747.

Step 2: Signup for Google Voice account and then in the initial setup or in the Settings: Phone section select the Gizmo option and enter and validate your Gizmo5 747 number from step 1.

Step 3: Get an Android phone. - Try where you can buy one for $200. NOTE: Get an unlocked one or you will need to have access to a T-mobile SIM chip to enter in your Google identity the first time. After that you won't need the SIM.

Step 4: Install GUAVA onto your Android phone. GUAVA stands for GoogleVoice UNAUTHORIZED Android Voice Application. This means it's NOT from Google so don't call or email Eric Schmidt when it doesn't work.

Step 5: Open GUAVA and then enter in your GoogleVoice username, password and phone number. Then enter your Gizmo5 username and password.

You're ready to make calls to any US number, receive calls, send SMS and check SMS messages all for free! Please visit the GUAVA user feedback area at: Please also see the 'about GUAVA' post for more info on this ALPHA software.


  1. Betreff: From Sipdroid Open Source Project...
    Datum: Tue, 21 Jul 2009 00:34:55 +0200
    Organisation: i-p-tel GmbH

    Dear sirs,

    you published "Guava" in violation of the GNU public license.

    Furthermore you removed the copyright notice. This is violating copyright laws.

    This is highly abominable because you're stealing intellectual property. Please stop immediately. We will inform legal authorities.

  2. Pascal,

    The copyright notice is not removed. Did you actually try the software? Once installed click the Menu button then select ABOUT. Here you will see:

    Guava is open source software. It is based on SIPdroid:

    Then below that there is a big long list of Copyright authors including:
    Luca Veltri
    We added Gizmo5 to the list of authors since we've done quite a bit of work with the code.

    Also the source code is available at:

    I'm assuming this is Pascal, CEO of I believe your company had some role in creating SIPdroid?

    I tried contacting your firm in advance, but there are no email addresses on your website that I could find. So I tried sending email to which bounced. Then I tried submitting a trouble ticket and your signup script appears to be broken so no new users can signup and put in a ticket or post to your forum. So it's difficult to contact your firm.

    You may not know this but I'm a huge backer of open source software. I've spent millions of dollars of my own money and millions through my companies to sponsor open source projects. This includes Linux, mysql, Firefox and Nvu.

    If you use Firefox when it does the little red underlining when you misspell a a word - that's code I paid for and made open source as one tiny example.

    So I'm a big believer in open source.

  3. I see on your website that you're calling for all companies to block Gizmo. It's a free country, 'er Internet so you're free to block whomever you want, but I'm baffled why you didn't just send me email to collect facts? I also find this ironic since Gizmo5 is one of the leaders in promoting open directories and SIP for the VOIP industry.

    It all seems reactionary to stir up controversy. Controversy can be good to raise awareness. I'm sure lots more people will learn about But I've found that direct communication is the best way to collect accurate information which is why I publish email addresses to make it easy for anyone to contact me.

    Oh, and because I implied it, but didn't state it outright - if you are the Pascal that sponsored the sipdroid project thanks for doing that.

  4. @MR:

    A lot of misunderstanding probably would have been avoided if you had 1) attributed to sipdroid in ANY way on I. your gizmo5 blog II. this blog or III. the download link. Not only do you not attribute sipdroid, in not one of the above links do you describe the license under which Guava is released (legally has to be GPLv3) nor did you provide any links to the source code until Pascal specifically called you out on it as shown above. For a company so deeply invested and entrenched in open source values, it's pretty shocking how poorly you adhered to them yourself.

  5. Jason - it CLEARLY says in the ABOUT section of GUAVA that the software is based on sipdroid. It also states that it's licensed under GPL. And it lists other copyright holders.

    I'll upload a screenshot since some people like you seem to be misinformed about this and want to criticize us for it.

    In addition, we provided a link to the source code on the support site and in any email sent to us before Pascal complained in the comment section (and by the way never bothered to contact us or check his facts).

    It's true we didn't talk about sipdroid on this blog. We also don't talk about Gizmo5, Android, or other copyright contributors. We also don't talk about the fact that it's written in Java. Users and the press don't care how the car works or who built it - only what the value is to them.

    -- MR

  6. Come on, Michael, fix the download page (to offer source code) and the application (to let access copyright after startup).

    Nice to know that you are driving NO NAME cars.

  7. There seems to be a serious security issue with the GUAVA modifications to Sipdroid:

    It looks like the Google Voice password and username are sent in cleartext to Gizmo (to This means anyone sniffing on the network where you make your call will be able to get your google account password! And of course, even if this is changed to work over https, you'd still have to trust Gizmo with your google account information.

    This needs to be changed so the username/password are sent only to Google and a temporary authentication token used by Gizmo instead (e.g.

    On a slightly related matter, I think it would be much better for everyone involved (especially the users) if you contributed your modifications back to the main Sipdroid development effort instead of forking a separate client. This would make security problems like the one above much easier to spot.

  8. I'm not sure what your complaint is because we didn't move where the copyright info is. It's in the SAME EXACT PLACE as your software sipdroid. I guess this is about competition right? You don't want a competitor to use sipdroid? That's definitely not in the spirit of open source.

    We have lots of work to do to build a web page for GUAVA. There isn't one yet. It could use setup instructions, video tutorial, screen shots and more. We haven't done this yet cause the software is still an unreliable alpha. It's not even the final user interface.

  9. What about just getting a SIP Wifi phone?

  10. Just checked out the software and got it all set up and configured.

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say that I assume any omissions to the proper gpl process (easy to find source, license, etc) were accidental and you just haven't had a chance to organize it yet. I think as a community, people should be given more of a benefit of doubt than what has happened here so far.

    In my opinion, I'm glad this was brought to your attention, but it could have been done in a much more elegant way and people seemed to have just over reacted.

    (apologies to either party if I'm misunderstanding any of the situation, that's just how it looked to me from the various sites that I read about it. Which, btw, is probably the only reason I stumbled upon guava! haha)

    The software itself though works great, especially for an alpha release. I was able to install/configure everything in just a few minutes and it worked right away, exactly as I expected it to. My interest isn't really in the 'free' part of the calls, but as something to replace the UMA functionality I lost by giving up my blackberry for a g1. This program fits perfectly.

    Thanks for all of your efforts so far (sipdroid AND guava and whatever sipdroid was based on, I forget). For me, this will be a must have app for my g1.

  11. so do I need internet access? do I need to subscribe to internet/wifi to be able to get this work?

  12. I've been using and testing out the app quite a bit over the last week or so. It seems to be very usable with a decent 3g connection (I get about 2-3 bars).

    You do need some sort of internet access, either 3g via your cell carrier or wifi via any wireless router you can get access to (your house, work, or free 'hotspots' like starbucks/mcdonalds etc).

    The G1 is a battery hog on wifi though when data is being constantly transferred, as is the case when using this app for a phone call, so be mindful of that.

    The only main usability issue I have with the app so far is it seems to have a very low volume. I think the developer is aware of that though.

  13. To Richard, regarding "something to replace the UMA functionality..", and you wouldn't have to pay your phone company (e.g. t-mobile) just to let you make SIP calls over wifi (called hotspot service) !
    To MR: Thanks for Guava. I hope the google authentication issue will be solved soon. One problem is that google accounts should be guarded due to google checkout profile.

  14. Well, a fairly heated debate.

    I see a GPL reference on the download page (which to be fair does look like it is tucked up out of the way) - but benefit of the doubt goes to you MR with regards to getting a proper site setup.

    I love the 'media' reaction, like the GPL is supposed to stop people tinkering with other open source projects erm, no.

    I didn't have to pay for it, the GPL and source are available, don't see what the problem is.

    Finally, Sipdroid didn't work when I tried configuring, GUAVA did...I just need a Google Voice account available outside the US...

    good job...

  15. So could you clarify a couple things for me. Is there a 3 minute time limit? If my mobile is set up in GV already ahould I remove it now that my Gizmo # is there? Seems like there would be a race event that would happen to my handset.

    Thanks for the program, I spent hours tring to configure sipdroid on my own.

  16. There is no 3 minute limit with GUAVA.

    If you have your mobile phone number AND your Gizmo5 ID setup in Google Voice, then your handset should indeed receive 2 incoming calls and you can elect to answer over GSM or wifi whichever you prefer.

  17. Hi...

    @MR: I'm still getting a three minute time limit on my Gizmo+GUAVA calls.

    Also, I'm finding I have to disable GUAVA in order to Make Google Voice calls via MyFaves....

    Can anyone help me with this issue please?



  18. Hi all...

    Update; My issue with GUAVA is this: I can only make one call after a Raytheon Reset on my phone. Is this because GUAVA dosen't have an on/off button yet?

    I wanna stick with GUAVA for free WiFi calls, but not at the cost of "bricking" my phone.


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  21. It appears that sipdroid has had contact information available since at least July 3, 2009. It is located at:

    Of course, it could be easier to find and the summary could be clear that it applies to the software as well as "the webpages under,,, and" if that is indeed the case.

  22. guava doesnt work anymore for me. This started on the 1st of sept. When I call out I hear no tone. It ends call after about 15-20seconds. So I unstalled that app and installed Sipdroid. Sipdroid works perfectly fine. But It charges my gizmo account.

  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

  24. The gizmo site states that making calls from a mobile to a non-gizmo mobile cost about 3.9 c/min. I'm paying T-Mobile 10 c/min on a pay-as-you-go plan. The Guava route for this calling use-case doesn't strike me as that screaming of a deal, especially if my battery is hemorrhaging electrons in the process. Am I missing something?

  25. Having trouble on the Nexus One and Andriod 2.1. Will there be an update available soon?

  26. Can someone help me?

    Gizmo-GV works for me on PC. Now on my android, I just got Guava, then I followed below steps:

    1. entered my GV usernv/pwd/number...entered my Gizmo usernm/pwd
    2. it registers fine, can see green light on upper left corner.
    3. Now when I call using guava..there is problem..choosing gizmo option, it asks me that you cant make call cuz you dont have credit.

    can someone please help?

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