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rebus
Vonage Forum Evangelist
Vonage Forum Evangelist


Joined: Dec 04, 2004
Posts: 448
Location: Tampa Bay

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 6:09 pm    Post subject: What Vonage Means To Me Reply with quote Back to top

I've posted my fair share of Vonage gripes, so to even things out I'm making this thread about something positive.

There are many reasons for getting Vonage: the satisfaction of telling the local phone company to get bent, getting free long distance, being able to take your local number with you when you move, taking your TA on the road when you travel, just to name a few.

In my case it was from looking down the itemized charges on our local phone bill, and really thinking about what each one represented.

$6.50 for that bogus "Federal Subscriber Line Fee" which is NOT Federal at all. It's nothing more than a charge the Feds say the local carrier is allowed to charge if they want to... as if any phone company wouldn't fully exploit that free gift.

$7.50 for Call Waiting. (used to be $3.)

$3.57 for the privilege of not having them list our phone number in the phone book where every telemarketer, political activist, and used car salesman can abuse it. (used to be $2)

Then there are the taxes... Federal, State, Local.

The "telecommunications relay service" which means we are subsidizing service for the hearing impaied. How about the Federal Universal Service Fee, which is us subsidizing service for low income users.

And then we get to the Extended Calling Service Area (ECS) charges. Verizon charges us $0.25 for each call that is outside our local calling area, but not far enough away to be considered long distance. From our house, friends, family, and employers which are a mere 7 miles away-- just 10 minutes down the road by car-- are in the ECS. When you live so close to everyone and see them frequently, the phone calls are usually short. Call Mom and get the answering machine.... BAM, that's a 25-cent call. Call my best friend to say I'm leaving the house and will be by to pick him up in 10 minutes... WHAM, another 25-cents. We spent more per-minute on ECS calls (on average) than we pay per-minute on out-of-state long distance. That is just wrong.

As far as I'm concerned, we were being raped by Verizon financially. Their landline service quality is superb. We never have service outages. In fact, even when we lost power during the Florida hurricanes last year-- one power outage lasted 3 days after an oak tree up the street wiped out the wires-- phone service was the only thing that never went out. They have never made a billing error on our account. On the few times we called for service, the issue was handled very quickly and the repair men were always polite and friendly.

So had it not been for Verizon price gouging us for all these years, I would not have seriously considered replacing their trusted-and-proven landline service with a new, unproven, and sometimes-unreliable service like Voip from an upstart company like Vonage... which relies on the sometimes unreliable network like the Internet... even giving up the security of Enhanced 911 service as part of the deal.

But I feel vindicated, because Vonage represents freedom. Freedom to tell Verizon to go pound salt, because we don't need you anymore. You gouged us for years, and now we can throw you to the dogs.

Freedom from all those state, federal, and local taxes-- at least until some influential bureaucrat realizes how much tax revenue they're "losing".

Freedom from all those subsidies for the disabled, unfortunate, and yes, those too lazy to get off their butts and get a job.

Freedom from being nickel and dimed (actually, dollar'ed) to death for even simple features like call waiting.

Freedom to move to a new neighborhood a few miles away and not have to worry about losing the phone number we've had for so many years.

Vonage may not be perfect, but at least I know when I hand over $27.24 each month, I'm getting every penny's worth of value for my hard-earned dollars. And that to me is the most important feature of all.

 
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reebok
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Joined: Oct 24, 2004
Posts: 3198
Location: Lakeland, FL

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

http://vonage-forum.com/reviews.html

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Cynicize
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Joined: Jan 12, 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 6:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

This is exactly the reason I went with Vonage. I didn't have a "land line" and haven't for about 3 years, using my cellular service instead. When I looked at the costs of a land line from all the major carriers, the costs were ridiculous. Basically they were about to charge me a LOT of money for very few services. Vonage had all their services, with unlimited calling..and that was all I needed to hear. I did do a lot of research on other Voip carriers, and found that while this may not be the cheapest, it's certainly well above the others in terms of features, tech support (which I can personally attest to...even though I don't technically have my phone yet), and voice clarity. I'm a little bummed that I have to use a Jacksonville area code right now, as opposed to a Pensacola one (which is where I live), but whenever they get the 850, I'll be able to change it from the Dashboard page. That's awesome. I really can't wait til tomorrow to get this thing up and running.
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AspectTec
Vonage Forum Master
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Joined: Jan 13, 2005
Posts: 244
Location: Columbus, GA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Amen brother. It feels good to get rid of a 47 dollar a month bill from Bellsouth when Im getting so much more for half the price.

The only gripe I have is the defective devices they are sending out.

The Service is as good as your internet connection which in my case is superb.
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Maaz
Vonage Forum Master
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Joined: Dec 05, 2004
Posts: 170

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I agree. Almost 2 years ago, I moved into this apartment and discovered that my cell phone didn't get very good reception at all. So I ended up going with a Verizon landline. Because most of my calls are long-distance or local toll, and I am against per call and per minute charges, I signed up with their unlimited plan for $64.95 a month which included all the features like caller ID and forwarding and all. However, by the time you pay all the taxes and inside wire maintenance and all, it went up to $84+ a month.

I really hated paying so much for a phone that I probably don't use more than an hour a day. But with most of my calls being long-distance, the above worked out to be a better deal. A couple months ago, I finally decided to switch to Vonage. The only frustration was having to pay the above to Verizon for the 7 weeks that it took for them to transfer my number to Vonage.

For $27.24 a month, I am happy. It works 98% of the time. Verizon probably worked $99.99% of the time but wasn't worth paying more than 3 times for.

Maaz
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rebus
Vonage Forum Evangelist
Vonage Forum Evangelist


Joined: Dec 04, 2004
Posts: 448
Location: Tampa Bay

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I'm a little uneasy about the lack of E-911 service. The PSAP for our area is the fire department. Their phone is answered 24x7, but that adds to the delay if it's an emergency for the local sheriff's department, or a medical emergency and the caller can't speak the address.

I'm also crossing my fingers we don't have another hurricane season like this past year, because we had a couple long (3 day) power outages. The only thing that never went down throughout any of the storms or their aftermaths, was our land-line phone service. After the 2nd day the cable service's head-end ran out of power and we lost internet service (I used a battery powered laptop and a UPS to power the cable modem).

I'll miss the security of an ultra-reliable landline, but now that I have a choice (Vonage), I am not willing at this point to spend an extra $120 per year to keep it.

 
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AspectTec
Vonage Forum Master
Vonage Forum Master


Joined: Jan 13, 2005
Posts: 244
Location: Columbus, GA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I have set up mine for 911 service and tested it. It works fine but I would pick up my Cell Phone in a tight situation. Ive used it before and it works just as good.
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rebus
Vonage Forum Evangelist
Vonage Forum Evangelist


Joined: Dec 04, 2004
Posts: 448
Location: Tampa Bay

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Maaz wrote:
Because most of my calls are long-distance or local toll, and I am against per call and per minute charges, I signed up with their unlimited plan for $64.95 a month

Several members of my immediate family have moved out of state over the past 5 years. Now that I have Vonage, I've probably talked to them more in the past 3 months with Vonage than I have, cumulatively, in all the years they have been gone. It sure is nice being able to pick up the phone and call whenever I want, without a care in the world over long distance bills. It's (almost) as good as them still living here.

 
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JScott
Vonage
Representative
Vonage<br>Representative


Joined: Dec 09, 2004
Posts: 79
Location: New Jersey

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 8:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!!
I take ALL the credit!!!

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AspectTec
Vonage Forum Master
Vonage Forum Master


Joined: Jan 13, 2005
Posts: 244
Location: Columbus, GA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2005 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Jscott, please have someone formally address the defective linksys devices. If it was not for this I would not have any issues with Vonage's superb service.

I tried to call in tonight to let them know I want to keep my current device since they one they sent me for replacement seems to be much worse.

When someone answered they were general customer service and not support like I choose. He took down a number and told me they are floored with calls and someone will have to get back with me at a later date. Sad
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