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gRich
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Joined: Mar 26, 2005
Posts: 6
Location: Vancouver, BC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 4:10 am    Post subject: Vonage and Shaw experience? Reply with quote Back to top

Does anyone here with Vonage using Shaw cable in BC? How's your experience?

I'll be signing up on Vonage within a couple of weeks but I'm thinking if I should keep my Telus ADSL (dumped my landline phone) or switch to Shaw Cable?

Any advice/shared experience will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
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odinyvr
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Joined: Feb 07, 2005
Posts: 53
Location: Vancouver, BC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Hi

I live in the West End. I switched over to Vonage on Feb. 7th and had been on DSL.

On the day I switched over l hooked up everything and the Vonage service worked just fine. I couldn't' tell the difference. I made a few test calls and then, unexpectedly my DSL service dropped. It took me all week to get it up and running again.

While I can't prove anything, I've read posts on the Vonage main board about ISP's restricting Voip access to their networks. I suspected at first that this is why I lost DSL service on Feb 07th and again on the 14th. I may never know why. I don't know and I have not researched this, but Telus may have some sort of a Voip or similar policy.

I've had a bit of history with Telus over the last few years and already knew what to expect from their brand of Customer Service. After taking to Telus technical support that day I decided to get cable since I didn't need my landline, the DSL or a headache.

There's a speed test on the side bar, just above member services. I love that tool, use it. For me, the most important part of the feedback is the QOS rating. If it's low, below 30%, I can expect poor call quality. There are other variables, but for me this was a big one.

I signed up for Shaw Extreme. The offered us the first month free. WIth Shaw, they advertise download speeds of "Up to 5 Mbps", they don't advertise any download speeds on any of their other packages, at least that I saw. On the flip side, they don't guarantee any minimum service levels either.

My first several tries making a call with Vonage on Shaw were disappointing. I experienced dropped calls and poor call quality in general.

I ran the speed test over several days while I scrambled to get Telus back. With Shaw, in my building and in this area, the signal is inconsistent. It's high sometimes during low demand periods, and lower during the evening when demand is high. I've never seen speeds even close to 5Mbps, always under 2. The QOS is always quite low, between 30% and 13%, and to be fair, it was 50% the other day. Shaw has a speed test, I don't recommend using it because the readings are not as detailed and the results are geared towards making you believe you have a great connection. Something that may or may not be true.

Telus began offering Naked or Dry DSL last month. This I found out when I called to cancel all my services. You can have DSL without the phone line. You need to contact Telus Internet and talk to Billing, not Sales. The monthly charge is higher, but if you have a cell phone with Telus Mobility they will give you a $15 monthly Mobility Credit. Overall the monthly rate without the credit is DSL service plus a portion, more than a third of what you for paying for a Residential line. Not really much of a savings after you add in your single line Vonage service, except Basic 500 with Vonage is feature rich compared to basic Telus.

Where I live, the Telus signal is very stable. The QOS is always the same, either 98% or 99%. The download and upload speeds are always in the same range. Shaw's reading are all over, most times just slightly higher those of Telus.

My headache with Telus started Feb 7th and I just got my service back on March 17th, I am still working out the billing with them. They are promising me a rate including tax of $43.26, this is after my Mobility Credit. I also forgot to mention that when I was offered Dry DSL, on Feb 14th I was supposed to only have a DSL signal, but they cut-off everything, Again I had made several Vonage calls just prior to the service being disconnected. It was a real headache dealing with Telus and after three days of calling them I gave up and took some time to cool off (1 month). I then emailed their customer relations dept. in Calgary. The agent there jumped right on it everything. He was amazed at what was going on. There's a lot more to the story, but it's not relevant to you your question.

In a nut shell, it depends on where you live. One provider may provide better service, they may both be the same. I would suggest trying the Vonage Speed test during different times of the day if you can, and over a week, to see who provides you with the better signal in your area. This may help you to determine which service better meets your overall needs in the end. Keep in mind that not everyone has problems with Telus or Shaw.

All the best

_________________
Vonage User Since: Feb 07, 2005
ISP: Shaw
Vonage Hardware: Linksys PAP2-CA
Router: SMC2804WBRP-G
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DarKev
Vonage Forum Evangelist
Vonage Forum Evangelist


Joined: Jan 25, 2005
Posts: 336
Location: Gatineau, QC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 3:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Where I live in Gatineau, Quebec - I'm with Videotron, which is Quebec's largest cable TV company. I have had no trouble whatsoever through Videotron. Their speed is consistent and of high quality. I have never had a Vonage call drop on me and I have been with Vonage for close to a full year now.

I have a relative who calls me each week and talks for over 2 hours. During that time, there is not even the fainted sound of a click. It's clear 100% of the time for me. I hope it stays that way.
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odinyvr
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Joined: Feb 07, 2005
Posts: 53
Location: Vancouver, BC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Darkev,

How much do you pay for your cable service? Is it in a bundle?

I'm paying $74.26 with taxes, $66.93 before.

This is for Shaws entertainment bundle that includes the full channel package (not digital), Shaw Extreme (regular internet, but accelerated, at least in theory).

I'm just curious to know what people are paying over there.

Cheers

_________________
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ISP: Shaw
Vonage Hardware: Linksys PAP2-CA
Router: SMC2804WBRP-G
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DarKev
Vonage Forum Evangelist
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Joined: Jan 25, 2005
Posts: 336
Location: Gatineau, QC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 3:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I don't have extreme high speed. I just have the regular high speed. It is more than adequate for my needs, and my phone calls are perfect. I have a Motorola SURFboard Cable Modem model # SB4100. The cost per month is $40.14 including taxes. I get a $10 discount because I also have digital cable through Videotron. That costs $58.61 per month, but I have pretty much everything - The Movie Network, and dozens of other channels. I chose this "20 ŕ la carte" package that allows me to pick and choose any 20 channels of my choice. Every 30 days I can logon to my account at Videotron and change my selection free of charge. The moment I click SUBMIT on the form, both of my TVs start receiving the broadcast. It's all automated and computerized. I don't know of too many other companies that give you 20 or 30 channels to pick and choose from. They do have the 30 ŕ la carte package too, but it is $10 extra. I don't watch half of what I've got now. In total, my Videotron monthly charges are $98.75 including Goods and Services Tax and Provincial Sales Tax (GST/PST). I am very pleased with what I have got, and the high speed internet which I am using for Vonage is fabulous.
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gRich
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Joined: Mar 26, 2005
Posts: 6
Location: Vancouver, BC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

odinyvr,

Thanks for sharing your experience. That was very informative. The reason I want to switch to Shaw is to have an Entertainment Bundle.

I will try it out and share my experience here.

Thanks
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miket603
Vonage Forum Master
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Joined: Mar 15, 2005
Posts: 188
Location: Burnaby, BC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 5:51 pm    Post subject: Re: Vonage and Shaw experience? Reply with quote Back to top

gRich wrote:
Does anyone here with Vonage using Shaw cable in BC? How's your experience?

I'll be signing up on Vonage within a couple of weeks but I'm thinking if I should keep my Telus ADSL (dumped my landline phone) or switch to Shaw Cable?

Any advice/shared experience will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.


I have Shaw and I live in Burnaby. My Vonage service has been good with no problems. I have "regular" high speed internet service (the only speed that was available before "lite" and "extreme" were introduced). Here are the maximum speeds as posted on Shaw's web site:

Shaw High-Speed Lite Internet offers a maximum download speed of 128 kilobits per second (kbps) and a maximum upload speed of 64 kbps.

Shaw High-Speed Internet offers a maximum download speed of 3 megabits per second (Mbps) and a maximum upload speed of 512 kbps.

Shaw High-Speed Xtreme-I boosts maximum download speed to 5 Mbps and maximum upload speed to 1 Mbps.

I just ran the speed test available on this site and here are my results:

1.49 Mbps download
444 kbps upload
QoS 52%

I have Linksys WRT54G router with a Linksys PAP2 adapter.

I didn't know that Telus was offering "naked" DSL now but my experience with Shaw has been good despite the fact the QoS is quite a bit lower than what I have seen DSL users post on the forum.

I hope that this helps.
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odinyvr
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Joined: Feb 07, 2005
Posts: 53
Location: Vancouver, BC

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2005 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I'm not clear on what Telus is doing.

My understanding is that Telus is offering 'Dry' DSL to existing customers who already have both a home line and DSL service and who only want the DSL.

I maybe wrong here, but I do not believe they are offering this to new customers. Which is why I previously stated to ask for Billing, not Sales. Sales knew nothing about this and made me feel like an idiot for asking.

Thanks for posting the speeds that Shaw offers. If I may add this though, Shaw advertises they offer speeds 'up to' 3 or 5 or whatever Mbps. The key words are 'up to'. They don't guarantee you'll get 5Mbps and they don't use the word consistent either.

I think Shaw service is the best in lower populated areas, where the demand is low. Downtown there are so many people using Shaw that the load on the lines are always changing. Great speeds at 3am but not at 7pm.

Both services have their pro's and con's, inform yourself. It's good to know what to expect and what not to expect, it can help to avoid disappointment sometimes.

_________________
Vonage User Since: Feb 07, 2005
ISP: Shaw
Vonage Hardware: Linksys PAP2-CA
Router: SMC2804WBRP-G
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bhc
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Joined: Mar 12, 2005
Posts: 1
Location: Richmond, BC

PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2005 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I'm in east Richmond, and I have both Vonage and Primus Voip (I'm trying out Vonage). I subscribe to Shaw regular high speed, and my Internet speed is consistently around 2.9Mbps down and 460k up according to dslreports.com. My score hovers around 4.0 to 4.4 according to testyourvoip.com.

So far, I have poorer sound quality on my Vonage Voip line than my Primus Voip. In fact, my Primus Voip is almost crystal clear. My friends in the States couldn't even tell it's Voip. They said it sounds clearer than my Telus landline that I used to have. But when I used Vonage to call them, they immediately recognized that I was using Voip phone since I sounded as if I was talking to them under the sea!!!

I believe the lack of QoS management feature on my D-Link DI624 router is to blame for the horrible sound quality on my Vonage Voip line. I'm planning to get the Linksys WRT54GP2 router that has QoS in it. Hopefully, it'll make my Vonage line as good as Primus' if not better.
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DarKev
Vonage Forum Evangelist
Vonage Forum Evangelist


Joined: Jan 25, 2005
Posts: 336
Location: Gatineau, QC

PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2005 9:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

That would definitely make a big difference with your line quality. You need to ensure your Vonage adapter is connected in such a way that it gets the priority over your other devices.

Although if you also have Primus, they might fight with each other, but how often would you be using 2 phone lines at the same time? So it shouldn't be an issue. Were you able to get Vonage to work through your Primus adapter? Or did you have to plug Vonage in first, then the Primus adapter into Vonage?

I think the D-Link DVG-1120M adapters that Primus uses have some kind of an amplifier built in for inbound and outbound voice transmissions. This is another reason why it may seem clearer. My friend is with Primus and the only thing I noticed is the sound was a bit louder. It was no more clearer than Vonage. The sound from both are very comparable.

Don't forget to let us know if things improve once you hook it up so that Vonage has priority.

Thanks.
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