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Vonage VoIP Forum Digest - February 3 - 5, 2006

Vonage VoIP Forum Digest

February 3, 2006

By Daniel Connor

Welcome to today's edition of the Vonage Voip Forum Digest. 

In the news, we'll tell you about Vonage's new phone numbers in a fast-growing area of the Texas Gulf Coast.. Today is Friday, the day for our In The Blogs feature. We'll also go over an interesting Vonage Voip Forum thread in which a Member seeks some answers about what occasionally happens to his wireless Internet connection when he uses Vonage over that connection. 

In The News

Vonage Hooks Up Corpus Christi, Texas With Local Numbers

Today, Vonage announces availability of local numbers in the Corpus Christi metro area. The area, which is south of Houston on Texas' fast-growing Gulf Coast, is now equipped to let Vonage customers keep their current numbers or choose Vonage numbers with the region's 361 area code.

In The Blogs

We read about 15 Voip and IP-telephony-related Weblogs. Some we read more than others, but we enjoy most of them. Face it, bloggers are opinion-shapers. So today, we are going to give you a round-up of what the blogs we read have recently said about Vonage recently.

Here's what the Voip bloggers have been writing about:

Jeff Pulver of sounds the drums for VoIP, and by implication, companies like Vonage, to be a vital part of the nation's emergency communications infrastructure.

Om Malik of Om Malik's Broadband Blog notes that the CEO of one of the leading U.S. telephone company broadband Internet access service providers is still sounding like he would like to charge companies like Vonage a fee for having their calls carried across his networks.

Tom Keating of VoIP Blog doesn't write about Vonage this week, but a couple of weeks ago he gave his thoughts on the announcement earlier this month that Vonage, along with three other companies, was recognized by Avaya with the new Avaya Intelligent Communications Innovation Award "for their innovative approaches to weave communications into the fabric of their business.". 

Mark Evans of the Telecom .. and Tech blog (he's from Canada, which is a northern country, and he writes about telecom and tech) notes that just like their counterparts in the U.S., big Canadian broadband Internet service providers are starting to make noises about charging Vonage for access. And last week Mark wrote that he likes the idea that Vonage is instituting home installation and services for its users in many metropolitan areas.

Russell Shaw of the ZDNet IP Telephony blog writes about the Colorado State Legislature's refusal this week to block cities in that state for taxing Voip services such as Vonage. He likes the Vonage installation program as well. In fact, he linked to our thread about it. Thanks, Russ. Last week, Russ also attended the Voip 2.0 IP Telephony conference in Fort Lauderdale, where he's blogged about a panel discussion he moderated that included the CEO of Counterpath. Formerly known as Xten, Counterpath is the company that makes the Vonage SoftPhone.

Bruce Stewart of the new O'Reilly Emerging Telephony Blog writes of his fears that the plans of a large U.S.-based broadband Internet services telecom to reserve up to 80% of its available bandwidth for video services could set the stage for that company demanding carriage fees for Vonage calls. If you don't know who that company is, well, their name starts with the same letter of the alphabet that Vonage's does.

Andy Abramson of VoIP Watch doesn't write specifically about Vonage this week, but last week he wrote that he likes the fact that Vonage is adding virtual phone numbers in Western Europe. He's also noticed Vonage's home installation program and writes a bit about that as well. 

Rich Tehrani of VoIP Blog hopes that the next U.S. Federal Communications Commissioner will be on the side of net neutrality. Rich also has several posts in which he refers to last week's Internet Telephony Conference & Expo in Fort Lauderdale. While Vonage did not have a booth or a presence, many companies that work with Vonage (such as CounterPath, developer of the Vonage SoftPhone) did.

On Ted Wallingford's The VoIP Weblog, Ted didn't write about Vonage this week, but last week he wrote about Vonage and E911. He also comes down on the side of "net neutrality," which is the concept that applications that use a fair amount of bandwidth (like Vonage, for instance) shouldn't have to pay extra to the big telcos to carry their bits and bytes. Ted thinks the concept of "net neutrality" will ultimately win. 

One of my favorite new blogs is written by Jack Decker. In his Michigan Telephone, Voip and Broadband Blog (which isn't limited to Michigan-related telecom issues, by the way), Jack states his case that Voip companies shouldn't lock adapters if the customer that used that adapter voluntarily closes his account with that company. You got to hand it to Jack, he's one of those bloggers who says exactly what's on his mind.

From time to time, we like to feature interesting and entertaining posts from Blogs that are not necessarily about VoIP, but mention Vonage. On a blog I just found called kimcob, a blogger by that name starts a post that asks, "Vonage opinions? Anyone out there have any experience with Vonage as a telephone provider? Thoughts and comments appreciated." When I checked early this morning kimcob received two responses, both of them highly favorable to Vonage. We use Vonage and have for about 2 years now," commentator jhislaine writes. Quite happy. Highly dependent up on the quality of your net connection, of course. Dwight would be able to give you more specific details." I guess Dwight is her significant other. But anyway, if you want to read this post, here's the link.

On The Vonage Voip Forum

New Vonage Forum Member knight2006 has had some problems with his wireless Internet connection conking out while on his Vonage connection. While he doesn't think that his Vonage connection is causing the problem, he wants to fully explore the issue. So that's why he decided to open a thread named Wireless Internet disconnect when using phone.

"I have a setup using the Linksys Vonage wireless router with 2 phone ports (WRT54G)," he writes. "My desktop PC has wireless adapter. When I pick up the phone to make a call, the internet connection on my desktop gets (disconnected). Sometimes it gets restored when I hang up, but sometimes I need to reboot to get it working."

Knight2006 asks if any other Vonage Forum Members have noticed this problem, and if so, if there is a way to fix it.

"Are you using a 2.4GHz cordless phone by any chance?," asks fellow Vonage Forum Member blakadher.

Knight2006 answers that he is using a 2.4 GHz cordless phone. "I am aware that the 2.4 GHz phones are not the best if you have a wireless setup but I have been a Voip user for more than a year (7 months with Vonage), but the setup used to work good, until we moved recently to our new home," he writes. "Is buying a 5.4 GHz phone only option to resolve the problem? "

Then blakadher comes back with some advice based on his own experience.

"I had the same issue as you (this was before using Vonage). Everything worked fine and then one day my laptop started losing its wireless connection when the phone would ring," he writes. "I have no idea what changed (I can't remember if it coincided with a change of the wireless NIC I used or not). I ended up getting a Uniden 5.8GHz phone and I've never had the wireless disconnect problem since."

Still, blakadher adds that he hesitates to state flat out that getting a 5.8GHz phone is the only viable option for Knight2006's wireless Internet connection problems. "Perhaps another Forum member will have some ideas such as changing the channel your phone and/or wireless network operates on," he adds in closing.

What Info To Post When You Are Having Tech Problems

As you just read, a good number of threads and posts on the Vonage Forum are devoted to a technical issue a Forum Member is having with his Vonage service, and questions as to what is causing the problem and how it can be fixed. Being able to provide such solutions is a major reason why we are here.

We have many knowledgeable Vonage Forum members who repeatedly have jumped in and provided advice that has led to solutions. Generally, the best way for them to help you is if you provide as much information as you can about your setup and the nature of the problem you are having.

This past summer, one of those knowledgeable and always Vonage Forum Members actually started a thread advising what info you should provide when you start a thread that asks for help with a Vonage-related issue. Trowski's thread is called What to post when having technical trouble with Vonage..... I liked his points so much that I have made this thread a "sticky," which means it appears at the top of the Vonage Voip Forum thread list you see when you go to

Here's what Trowski advises that you post:

1. Your location
2. Your ISP name and type (cable, DSL, wireless etc)
3. Upload and download speeds
4. Modem make and model
5. Type of Vonage adapter used i.e. RT31P2 or PAP2
6. Setup of Network i.e. Modem---->Vonage Adapter-->PC
7. Issue you are experiencing i.e. dropped calls, choppy audio etc
8. DETAILED results from with a test call to Boston.

"This will help you get the answers/resolution faster if you can post that first....," he writes.

And I added, "that a detailed title is very important, one that does not have the words: "Please", "Help" or "Vonage" in it. And if you haven't already done so, please take a minute to read the forum rules prior to posting for the first time."

As we close out today's Digest, I'd like to remind you once again about some more options you have to receive the Vonage Voip Forum Digest every day. If you go to this page:, you will see a list of RSS Newsreaders from which with one or two clicks, you'll be able to get your Digest delivered directly to your Newsreader each morning. The Newsreaders we've linked to on that page include such reliable and trusted services as Bloglines, Feedster, My Yahoo!, Newsgator and Feedburner. I am open to add others, just contact me with the info of the Newsreader.

That's what's hot about Vonage today. We'll be back on Monday morning with our next edition of the Vonage VoIP Forum Digest, including our popular Vonage Voip Forum Member of the Week feature!

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