Call pick up and steal

Well, it has been a good day today. We have the ring groups working nicely with a variety of options, and we have even managed busy lamp field working with SNOMs, which is well fun. Mind you - I spend a few hours re-scripting the bank as they have changed their on-line banking - grrr! But I got back on VoIP (not a three letter acronym) by lunch time.

So challenge for tomorrow morning is call pickup and steal.

This needs some security so I am making phones have a "level" and not allowed to pickup or steal calls of a higher level. That should cover it.

The idea is that dialling * and number is to pick up or steal a call from that number.

"Pickup" people mostly understand - if a phone is ringing for a group or a user you dial * and the number for the group or user and grab the ringing call. Simples.

But call steal is different - that is grabbing an answered call from a user. Why would you do that?!?

Well, we have found two very good reasons for this. It is really nice.

1. If you want to transfer a call across the office, instead of saying "I have a call for you, what's you extn number?" you say "I have a call for you on 123, can you take it?". They then dial *123 and grab the call. This works very well, and is much easier than transferring a call especially with some types of phone which make transferring a real pain!

2. You can move an existing call to your mobile by dialling * and your extn. Why? Well, it is home time, and I want to head off, to seamlessly moving the call to my mobile is cool. I can do it with a headset without the other party realising. When I get home I can even steal back to the house phone. It only works because we have mobiles as extensions on the system, but that is very cool if you can do it. This works so well and people are very confused that they are now talking to me at home but called me at the office. Well worth doing if you can.


  1. Regarding #1, you can do the same thing with "parking" on Cisco phone systems. The initial person would press "Park", then their phone would display the extension number for the parked call. (The administrator defines a range of extensions for this.) The initial person can then say "Hey, pick up a call on 1234", and the second person just has to dial that extension (no * in front).

  2. we have been using call parking with snom indicator lights to do a very similar thing. Most of our 'office' extensions are actually in our home offices and on key high sites.
    Call 'stealing' would not work so well here as we are not in the same office

    Basically I Use a few buttons on the Snoms, One is set as
    park+orbit tells asterisk to park the call
    we then use a couple of buttons to pick up the first 2 parking slots, this is combined with making the adjacent indicator lights show if there is a parked call in that slot.

    The back end sip switch is asterisk. I have a fair bit of experience at this stage with snom's and I like them.


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