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Hubby and I are looking at other phone options since we're getting sick and tired of Verizon. Has anyone used Vonage? If not, do you know of another service you could recommend?

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Tried Vonage, was very unhappy.

 

Bill

Exact opposite here. I've been with Vonage for 10 months and love the service. There's been one outage I'm aware of since signing up that knocked out service for a little over an hour, and that's been the extent of my problems with them.

 

My only gripe is they don't offer WV numbers yet, so I had to go with a Virgina number. But since our house phone is just an alternative to the wireless these days, that's not a big deal.

Edited by tattoovampire

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Hubby and I are looking at other phone options since we're getting sick and tired of Verizon.  Has anyone used Vonage?  If not, do you know of another service you could recommend?

 

I am very empathetic with your Verizon experience. I'll say that I haven't had either of the two services available to me actually installed or tried them out. Time Warner offers their phone package over broadband and Vonage is the other available.

 

I'm interested in dumping Verizon but so far the alternative doesn't look to be nearly as reliable as Verizon.

 

My guess (I emphasize GUESS :P ) is that if you're a cell phone user you might have some idea of the quality that you could experience from Vonage. The apparent "static", missed words, lost signal - all that is possible with voice over IP. Verizon on the other hand does provide a loud, clear connection 99% of the time.

 

THe other gotchas might be :

- you aren't able to use anything but cordless phones (Time Warner says that with a little phone box rewiring you'll be able to use all your other regular phone outlets - but who wants to dive into their phone box? Especially if you're an apartment dweller - you won't even have access to it).

 

- Emergency 911 may not be available as you're used to it over your normal phone line. It could vary from unavailable to available *if you register* your location with the 911 center - and even then you will have to be able to speak verbally over the phone in an emergency.

 

So while cost savings look great you may well be getting precisely what you pay for.

 

Again - this is just my opinion gathered from others and from talking with sales folks at TW.

 

Altho it galls me, I'm sticking with Verizon for now.

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Thanks everyone.

 

John - those are some good points. I don't know what braniac duped everyone into thinking that digital cell phones sounded so much more clear than analog, but I have never found that to be true. I miss my old cell phone where I could hear what was going on in the background and the voice on the other end didn't sound like it was always slightly distorted or coming through water.

 

What got me wanting to switch is that Verizon started charging me for our calling plan out of the blue - no warning, no explanation, nothing. We barely use the long distance and I'm pondering getting rid of it altogether. I'd have to see if we could still call toll-free numbers or not because I can get phone cards at work that are only 5.8 cents/minute.

 

On top of that, our DSL quality has taken a nosedive in the past 2 weeks. While it was never stellar (1.1 mbits/sec was the highest I've ever seen it get to), lately it's been in the 350-750kb/sec range which is unacceptable. I'm loathe to give more money to Insight, but at a certain point, enough is enough. It'd be cheaper anyway.

 

One consolation is that Insight's tech support CAN'T be worse than Verizon's! When they were having service issues last week, their response to a friend of mine was, "Your computers are broken." :P He is no longer a Verizon customer. ;)

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I have had Vonage for over 5 months now with a hicup when I first tried to hook it up. I bought an adapter from a large box store and had to return it because it was DOA. I asked Vonage which adapter was the lease troublesome and they said the Motorola V1000. I went searching for one and got the last one available at Radio Shack. No problems here but make sure you try out the Vonage speed test

http://www.vonage-forum.com/voip-speed-test.html

to check your dsl.

Porting your old number can be a nightmare for some folks to Vonage. I only had to wait the 20 days and it was switched over but others have had 8 month waits!

Enhanced 911 will soon be available on VOIP according to the FCC chairman.

Can you get "Naked DSL" with verizon? (no working number just dsl?)

I reccomed that you go to the Vonage forums http://www.vonage-forum.com/forums.html and read thru the posts there. Keep in mind those posters are usually the ones having problems and you don't see too many positive posts.

I am saving over $50 per month not having Qwest and AT&T (my long distance) and only 1 outage (2hours) that I know of. Line quality depends alot on your broadband connection. There customer service is getting better from what I have read.

youneverknow

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I don't think you can have just dsl, but I wouldn't change to Vonage unless I got cable anyway. According to their site I wouldn't be able to keep my number. That's another nightmare to consider.

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I use Vonage and I have been very happy with it. I've used them for almost 2 years now. The first few months were a little rough. They were still new. But the last year and a half has been great.

 

All the features that phone companies bleed you for are included in the Vonage plan. All my calls are logged, and all incoming calls have caller ID with name so I know who's calling me. The list of features is quiet long. So I won't do that here and you can find that information at their website.

 

This thread got me curious about 911 service. I did all that was required by Vonage, but I have never needed to use it. So I called them just now.

 

Apparently the service will get you to the 911 person. However, there are none of the new/electronic features that 911 has rolled out in the last 10 years (much less in my neck of the woods) that allow the operators to see your address, phone number or any other information. So you will have to give all of that information to them. Apparently this is true for any VOIP service, including cell phones too. Disappointing and I will follow up with that.

 

Besides that, the service and features have been great and reliability has been superb as well. Even with the 911 service, I would highly recommend them as an alternative.

 

The call quality I receive is NOT like a cell phone. It is identical to that of my land-line service. Identical. Nobody has been able to tell unless we tell them. They are extremely clear.

 

There is one exception to this and that is the delay. The 100ms to 250ms delay is imperceptible EXCEPT when you talk to someone on a cell phone. Because cell phones ALSO have a 100ms to 250ms delay. In the worse case scenario, that can add up to a half second and sometimes that is noticeable.

 

Some people have tied their boxes into their home phone service. But I elected not to and have a multi-handset phone set-up.

 

Good luck in your evaluation!

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I am currently waiting for vonage to switch my phone number. I've been waiting for 8 months. I give them a call every month to get them to reverse my bill.

 

My existing phone company has had no record of any request by vonage to "port" my number. I guess Vonage is using a third party to do that, and that is where the problem lies.

 

If I don't get it this month I'm giving another carrier a try. Broadvoice seems like it is a decent competitor.

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Tried Vonage, was very unhappy.

 

Bill

Could you list a few of your bad experiences that haven't already been listed? I too am thinking about going this route and would like to know what to expect.

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:thumbup1: I've been using Vonage for 4 months now, and can't complain. The audio quality is as good as my land line was and better than my cell phone. I couldn't switch my existing number (Verizon), but I never considered that a big deal - I just let people I want to call me about my new number. Setup was OK, but might have been a little confusing for someone not computer-literate. My cable Internet service is very stable, so no problems there.

 

You can, in fact, hook the Vonage box to the head end of your home's phone wiring, and use all your regular extensions.

 

I had one problem at the beginning, and was leery about the horror stories I had read about the hours-long wait for Vonage support. I called at 8:30 AM ET on Saturday morning and was connected immediately. The rep was friendly and knew what he was doing.

 

Bottom line is, for 27.24 a month (inc tax) I get phone service with all

the bells and whistles, including some I hadn't thought of (Vonage sends you an email when you receive a voicemail, and you can configure it to attach the voicemail to the email as a .wav file.)

 

Another big plus for me is, since most of my relatives have some kind of broadband, I can take my Vonage box, and my phone number, with me when I visit.

 

Steve

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This thread has gotten me interested in Vonage now. (Thanks, folks! :thumbup1: ) I'm wondering a couple things:

 

1. Has anyone who NEEDED to keep their old number not been able to?

2. Has anyone used any of the overseas packages? If so, what are/were your results?

3. Has anyone gotten Vonage with BellSouth DSL?

 

My wife is from the Philippines and calls there quite often, hence the overseas requirement.

 

Just explorin' the possibilites for now!

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This thread has gotten me interested in Vonage now.  (Thanks, folks!  :D )  I'm wondering a couple things:

 

1. Has anyone who NEEDED to keep their old number not been able to?

2. Has anyone used any of the overseas packages? If so, what are/were your results?

3. Has anyone gotten Vonage with BellSouth DSL?

 

My wife is from the Philippines and calls there quite often, hence the overseas requirement.

 

Just explorin' the possibilites for now!

Ive WANTED to keep my phone number as stated above, but it has taken some time. I have friends who are very happy with vonage so I have stuck in there.

I have noticed that prices for overseas packages seem to be with Broadvoice than with Vonage. For 5 bucks less ($20), you can call a lot of countries with no additional cost. For about the same price as vonage you can get even more countries. You might look in and see what package has the Philippines. If its good enough for Steven Tyler of Aerosmith, its gotta be good... right?

...RIGHT?

anywho. Check them out too.

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Sorry I'm late to the party but the other post pointing at this one prompted me to share my experiences. After the hurricane and the fiasco with BellSouth in the area (Florida Keys) I decided to go to Comcast cable internet and switched to Vonage with the kit from Radio Shack (It was there and I was in a hurry :))

 

The only problem I have had with the service was that either Vonage or Bell didn't switch everything right and out-of-area calls were coming in on Vonage but the in-area calls were coming in via BellSouth. I called both and it got fixed so I don't know who did what.

 

The service is good. I've had no outages that weren't cable outages. I kept my old number (and the Keys are not the most advanced in the county if you know what I mean) and the quality is great.

 

The only thing I don't like... I had a "We want to refinance your home" company with callers from India calling several times a day calling me a "piece of s**t" and all kinds of crazy stuff. Bell would have let me log the calls by pressing 3 keys and the they'd call the authorities to handle it. Vonage has no such service. I can't block the known bad numbers and they won't go to the cops for me. Kind of a shame since Bell would but that's how it is. You make your choices based on cost and benefit.

 

Hope it helps someone.

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I'd have to see if we could still call toll-free numbers or not because I can get phone cards at work that are only 5.8 cents/minute.

 

Okay. REALLY LATE addition to this conversation, I realize, but I have to put in a plug for a company called OneSuite. I've been a customer there for more than three years, and I've been SO HAPPY with the service and prices. We don't have any long distance on our home phone, and don't need it.

 

With OneSuite we dial a local phone number (not available in all areas). When calling from home, OneSuite recognizes us so we don't have to use a PIN number. Then we have pre-programmed access shortcuts for all our calls. I dial 21# to call my inlaws.

 

With it being a local number, I actually press the same number of buttons to use OneSuite that I would if I dialed direct, and I pay a lot less.

 

How much, you ask? 2.5 cents a minute to USA, and (get this) 1.9 cents a minute to Canada (both using the local number. If I used the 1-800 number, it's 2.9 and 3.2 cents respectively). And they have great international rates as well: United Kingdom for 2.2, Germany for 3, Brazil for 5.5, China for 2.2, Japan for 4, South Africa for 7, etc.

 

I'm not in any way affiliated with OneSuite. I'm just a VERY happy customer.

 

PM me if you want their website. (Referral URLs are against TCH-forums policy, but I can send you one that will give you 20 free minutes.)

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