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October 24th, 2012 · 5 Comments

I’ve just subscribed to a VOIP telephone service, Ooma. That’s “Voice Over IP”, which means it uses my internet connection to make phone calls.

The main advantage is cost. The monthly fee amounts to about $4, which includes unlimited calls anywhere in the US and Canada. International calls are cheap too — Taiwan landlines cost about 3 cents a minute, though Taiwan cell phones are about 11 cents. Still cheap. I will probably opt for the $10/month premier package that includes enhanced Caller ID, and a community block list where people share the phone numbers of solicitors so we can block them.

I just set it up this morning, so we don’t have a lot of experience to report on call quality and reliability, but the few calls I have made sound good.

Some people have asked why we continue to have a home phone. International calls is one big reason. It costs a lot to call Taiwan or Australia on a cell phone. Another reason is so I don’t have to give my cell phone out and start receiving solicitations everywhere I go.

I’ll update after we have tried it for a while. Right now it is a separate number, but if we are satisfied with the quality and reliability we will port our existing home phone number over and cancel Qwest.

Tags: Computers, Tech & Science · Family Updates

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Dale // Oct 25, 2012 at 7:24 am

    Sounds good. Can you call to other peoples cell and landlines, and how are they charged?

  • 2 Don // Oct 25, 2012 at 10:31 am

    Back in 1994 I made a suggestion to Hughes about a cost saving idea. That idea was using a VOIP telephone although the term VOIP didn’t exist then.

    My idea was dismissed without an explanation but now many businesses are using it.

    We got rid of our land line a while ago but we don’t call international so it was an easy decision.

  • 3 Donna // Oct 25, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    Marvell phone system is VOIP, ever since we came over from Intel. You can’t tell the difference in call quality. However when the network goes down, so do the phones. But that just means no work calls! 🙂

  • 4 Daryl // Oct 25, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    If the network goes down, all calls will be automatically forwarded to my cell phone. So I will get the work calls. Oh, wait, never mind.

  • 5 Daryl // Oct 28, 2012 at 9:42 am

    After trying this a few days, including a call to Taiwan to talk with Devon, we have decided the call quality is excellent and there’s no reason not to switch. I have submitted to have my landline number ported over to Ooma, which will take up to a month.

    BTW, Consumer Reports recently rated Ooma the best landline phone service in the country, including Cox, Verizon, AT&T and Qwest, based on reader satisfaction. I’m sure the price has a lot to do with that rating.

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