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February 08, 2007



Last year we took our Christmas $ and switched to high speed internet access with a router and changed our phones to Vonage. It was one of the best moves we ever made. The features are awesome (ringing at other numbers, voice messages coming through as emails, three way calling, etc). We are saving lots of $, too.

The negatives are that sometimes we get echoes (but rarely) and every once in a while we will have a static-y day. Also, my job requires a lot of phone use. It's a real drag when the internet goes down because our phone goes down, also. Fortunately, that is also rare. We have a trac-fone as a backup. We don't even own a real cell phone.

Vonage comes with with its own hook up information and you just use regular phones. One phone goes into their "box" and the rest of the phones in the house hook up normally into their regular jacks.

If you do go with someone like Vonage, I would be happy to send you an official invite (I get two free months then :-) )Just let me know.

It's a move we have not regretted after a year of using VOIP.


Is it idiot-proof for the technically challenged? e.g., could I call for Chinese takeout the same way I do now?


You can call the same way you do now as long as your computer is on so that the phone can recieve a signal from the cable.

It doesn't too hard to set up, but for the really TC, a bit of help might be needed.


Funny, I'd been thinking to post about VOIP myself, for a different reason.

I'm starting the new business, and Verizon rapes you for business service. I have cell phones that for now are personal and a family plan to start out, in part because there's probably not going to be an "office" in the traditional sense. What the office will amount to is a computer lab and place for me and people working for me to meet if needed.

Anyway, I was wondering if maybe it would be worth using VOIP over my existing FiOS internet connection at home, on the idea of having a "real" number that can forward to a cell if needed, having more sophisticated voicemail, etc., without it costing absurd amounts. And if that would mean it could also be used over internet from another location, like the computer lab/office if it had non-phone based internet connectivity (which is a whole other issue; I could use my existing office and probably will at first, but there's no reasonable internet option there, or wasn't, such that when I did have internet that wasn't borrowed from my big client it was 64k of T-1 for $99 a month).

FWIW we use the Freedom plan on the home phone, so it's unlimed calling to the US and Canada, allowing hours of calling to California and stuff. No surprises.


Actually, you don't need your computer on. Just the router. And you can order everything normally (even pizza and Chinese), and you can forward to any number you want--even cell or places you travel. I can call all the US and Canada and I think it's five European countries, including England. I pay around $32/month after taxes for unlimited calling.


Thanks for all the info CP. All we need is a basic plan ($15) as we don't use the phone very much. 500 minutes is much more than we will ever use in a month - including holidays.

Can't use plans from the long distance company as it would cost more a year than we make in phone calls anyway (believe me, I checked into that a long time ago).

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