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DorisAnna
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2005 12:59 pm    Post subject: Will I talk about Vonage over Thanksgiving? Reply with quote Back to top

I have had Vonage for almost a year. I have been satisfied with my service until about 2 months ago. Now I can't surf the net while talking or people can't hear me. I can hear them, but they can't hear me.. So I have to get offline, then call them back. I'm not very happy with that. I'm also experiencing a problem with fast busy signals and can't seem to get through to people. If I try them on my cell phone, I get right through.

So, to answer the question... Yes, I feel Vonage has great benefits, but I'm hesitating on sharing it with family and friends until the problems are fixed.
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DallasFlier
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2005 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

navydavy2001 wrote:
NYAH NYAH. Very Happy

http://www.sundance-communications.com/forum/ultimatebb.php


Bzzzt! Nice try, and thanks for playing! Smile

That forum is about telephone EQUIPMENT, and not about POTS telephone SERVICE.

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seeker_ktf
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 10:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

navydavy2001 wrote:
DallasFlier wrote:
dconnor wrote:
seeker_ktf wrote:
When was the last time anyone needed a discussion board for a POTS line?


http://www.dslreports.com/forums/9

And it is not just about connectivity.


Uhh Dan, did you bother scanning the threads in that forum? I just did, and there's not 1 in 100 that have anything to do with POTS. They're all about DSL, fiber, T1's, and other related high speed digital data related matters. To say its a POTS forum just isn't true at all.


Oh, and comparing Voip to standard POTS is like comparing a moderm PC to an abacus. So there. Smile


Why is that exactly? Here's a news flash... POTS is Voip. The main difference is that my analog connection has to travel and extra mile or so to the CO around the corner from my house before becoming Voip. The other main difference is that if there's a problem, I make a call and it gets fixed within 24 hours... and I don't have to reboot anything 51 times either... Smile

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linnym
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 2:17 pm    Post subject: Will You Suggest Vonage To Your Relatives Over Thanksgiving? Reply with quote Back to top

I would have considering they have had a good record with me until they gave me a firmware upgrade on a RT31P2 and destroyed two caller ID units so now I received a new router, RTP300 and everything was working perfectly until the firmware engineers used me as a ginny pig again with another upgrade and now I have something that sounds like bad echo cancellation that gets worse as the conversation gets longer.
Now I have bad service and when I called customer service to get it fixed they ignore me when I tell them it didn't occur until I received the newest firmware and that is what is causing the problem. But no, they insist on going through that damned idiot card instead of listening to the customer. Oh and changing proxy servers to have me test it out then promising to call back to see if it made any difference but never calling back.
So no to answer your question.
I am now researching the market for a different phone service unless Vonage gets their **** straightened out and quit using customers as ginny pigs. Or better yet, surrounding themselves with better firmware engineers.

From a very unhappy customer.

If you think this posting is not of good taste then instead of deleting it or locking the thread why don't you get up off your chair and get them to understand that they have a bunch of problems they need to fix and very soon like yesterday!

I and many have had enough and if Vonage wants to keep their "good thing" then they had better get it right!
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ColdGin
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

yawn

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csnet
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Posts: 86
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

ColdGin wrote:
yawn

Tanqueray, please don't take the ginny pig remark personally. Wink

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ndelregno
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 1:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Unfortunately no. I was really looking forward to moving away from the stodgy old LEC (Local Exchange Carrier) and to a more progressive, dotcom'ish phone company. I finally decided to test the waters for my various extended family members since I am the official guinea pig. As a result, not only will I not recommend Vonage to my friends and family, irrespective of the theme of the holiday gathering, I will go out of my way to warn them against using Vonage.

Being a telecom engineer, and having worked with Voip since its public debut in the mid 90s, I have always thought the Vonage business model was compelling as broadband access became increasingly available. As I am currently a Verizon FIOS customer, with 15Mbps downstream and 2 Mbps upstream, I thought the time right to make the change...

So, I purchased the vtech IP 8100-2 Broadband Telephone System from Best Buy, with 2 additional wireless handsets. The 8100-2 system was "New in Box"; I had to break the factory seal to open the box. When I returned home, I eagerly unpacked the hardware and set it up, only to find the wonderful "invalid MAC" message from the Retail Activation screen. For the record my "Invalid MAC" is 0011A0026D3A. After ensuring, through multiple methods, that the MAC address I was attempting to enter was "valid", I called technical support. Because this was a retail activation issue, I was transferred. Once the Music on Hold stopped, I only heard heaving breathing for a few moments, thinking surely my line wasn't picked without a greeting. The breathing continued until I said, "Hello?".

The person at tech support, attempted to resolve the situation, then said he would have to open a ticket with the engineers. Frustrated, but hopeful, I said okay. I was given the work order number: 3406932 and told they would either email or call once the situation was resolved. What follows is their "resolution":

==========================

Dear xxxxxxxxx,

Thank you for contacting Customer Care. I am sorry for any delay in responding.

In response to your email, the device is not in our inventory and
therefore cannot be activated. In the event that this device was
purchased at one of our retail centers, you will have to exchange the device for activation.

Thank you for considering customer care for your business needs and I hope that I have answered your questions. Do not hesitate to contact us if you need further assistance.

We look forward to having you as a valued customer.

Sincerely,

Adebayo B.
Customer Service Representative
===================================

Instead of typing my 6 bytes (12 characters) into their database, the onus is on me to return the offending unit, step right up and spin the wheel of fortune again.

So, now I am thinking, "What are my chances of getting a unit with a "valid" MAC when I return this unit to Best Buy and pull the next one off the shelf?" Also, shouldn't someone alert Best Buy that the products they are selling will not be honored by Vonage?

My answers are: not good and absolutely, respectively.

So my options are:
A) Repack the Broadband Phone base and 2 wireless handsets, return them to Best Buy, alert Best Buy management and try my luck again,
B) Repack the Broadband Phone base and 2 wireless handsets, return them to Best Buy, alert Best Buy management, sign up for Vonage service, pay for the same @#$*& system from Vonage, receive a larger rebate from Vonage ($70 vs. $50) and hope like %&## Vonage will realize that the MAC is valid, or
C) Repack the Broadband Phone base, 2 included wireless handsets and 2 additional wireless handsets, return them to Best Buy, alert Best Buy management to the problem and sign up with Lingo instead (as many of my colleagues have recommended).

I am leaning toward the latter, based on my wonderful technical support experience.

So, after all that would I recommend Vonage to a friend, family member, colleague or acquaintance? In a word, no.

It truly saddens me to see what could be a dynamic company act so similarly to the behemoth LECs they are trying to supplant.
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Inundated
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

My father actually asked about it the other day, oddly enough. He doesn't know it's Vonage (or even the Earthlink brand name it's been riding under), but rather knows it as "that Internet phone thing you can call long distance for free with" Very Happy

When I got the service, it was so I could call my then-girlfriend, who lives in Ontario. The ability to call Canada at no per-minute cost was too much to pass up.

Anyway, we talked about it, and decided he won't get it. He has a cell phone with unlimited minutes, which he uses nearly every few minutes to call his business. He barely uses his SBC landline, and even so, his DSL connection is attached to it...so unless SBC could do so-called "naked DSL", he needs to pay for the landline anyway.
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reebok
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

they can and do, you should look into it. it's also an fcc requirement for a recent merger. (not sure if it's actually in effect, but I believe sbc has offered naked dsl for a while, at least in some parts)

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IronHelix
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 26, 2005 7:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Since we're being honest here, imma jump in. This post contains my personal experiences, facts and things that happened. This is not a rant and I do not work for any other Voip provider. If this post is in violation of something please tell me and it will be edited. I intend to post most of this as a formal review here and on DSLreports when I have time. Thanks.

Short answer: no, and I specifically tell people NOT to get Vonage. They let my number port stagnate for a year, take months to return emails, and now prevent me from porting the vonage-assigned temporary number out to a carrier that answers my email and allows me to not use a crappy ATA.

Long answer/my story:



I signed up with Vonage in December of 03. I was new to Voip then and it seemed like a really cool idea (phone service over the Internet! Wow!). I signed up to have my number ported, they shipped me a Motorola VT1000 series ATA, and i left it in the box for a while waiting on the port. After 30 days, no port, I called and asked why, they said they'd fix it and to sit tight. Same thing, 30 days, no port. Shoulda cancelled there and been done with it, mistake #1. I called a few more times but after a while got frustrated and forgot about the whole thing (I had other things on my mind then). Anyway, on and off over the next few months I would call and wait and call and wait, nothign ever happened. I then moved, and not wanting to pay the ILEC to setup a POTS line when I already was paying for Vonage, started using it and gave the temporary number to my friends (mistake #2). Started calling Vonage more aggressively, sent several emails using their web form, even called their 1800-496-something number to get direct to the porting department. Every time they would say that they'd look into it, they'd resubmit the port, they'd check with the carrier for status, NOT ONCE was such a call ever followed up on. Several times I was promised that it would be handled and it wasn't. Many of my emails got form responses, some got no responses. One got a response no less than (this is not a joke or an exaggeration) 9.5 months after I sent it. That's right, I mailed them to inquire (again) about my port in November 2004, and they responded in JULY 2005. And their response was to just cancel my port and assign the temporary number as my primary (waiving the usual $10 fee, oh goody). That's right, it took about as long for them to answer an email as it takes most women to concieve, develop, and give birth to a human baby. That was the last straw.

I finally gave up and after learning MUCH more about Voip technologies including Asterisk (free Voip pbx software for Linux) decided that Asterisk was the way to go. (I'm a computer consultant and this could better handle my business calls.) Vonage will not accept such a system except for their 'softphone' access which is (to me at least) useless (I can buy minutes cheaper elsewhere). They make you use their ATA for your main line. I found another Voip carrier similar to Vonage that supported and even encouraged the use of Asterisk, and asked them to port my Vonage temporary number (as I'd now given up all hope of getting my first number to work, and everybody had the temporary number anyway due to mistake #2). This company was highly rated for customer service, and is a smaller provider. They aren't as large or slick as Vonage... their website ****, they bill people with quickbooks, but **THEY ANSWER THEIR EMAIL**. As I understand it, I'm not allowed to give a name so I won't, which is too bad, I'd love to send some customers their way. But back on topic.

I faxed their LOA form along with a printout of my Vonage dashboard accounts page as proof. The tech I worked with was very helpful, and got everything set up on their end. Unlike Vonage, they don't start charging you until they know you will have a successful port. So everything looked good, they setup my account, I linked in my server, and the number didn't port. I started using their system for outbound calling which worked great. However my Vonage number wasn't porting. The rep I was working with put in nothing short of a heroic effort to try to port my number, using all of their upstream carriers. After more than two months of trying (and keeping in excellent contact via email- only once has it taken him more than a day or two to respond to an email, and even then half the email was an apology that it took so long), he came to the conclusion that Vonage was doing something to the line ('Enhanced Services') that prevents it from being ported. I figure this might mean 911 so I emailed Vonage to ask them to kill 911, of course they didn't even respond. That was a few weeks ago.

So that's where I am now. On Monday I intend to call Vonage (i am setting aside a few hours for this task) to ask (beg) for the release of my number.
When I call, I don't expect to be able to easily find or get in touch with a useful technician who has the power to do what I need. With my new carrier- such a tech is just an email away. I do expect to be told that I need to reboot my router and/or phone adapter. Perhaps dealing with Vonage has made me cynical, but I blame them for that.


So no, I didn't recommend Vonage to anybody this year.
FWIW, one branch of my family is happily using Vonage, recommended by me back when I thought everything was peachy. They don't care about Voip or ATAs and just want cheap phone calls, and they are quite happy with it. It has worked extremely reliably for them, and it saves them a great deal of money due to the large number of long-distance calls they make. However, they didn't port, they got a Vonage-assigned number. They aren't nearly as geeky as I am, so they'll probably be happy for the forseeable future, and I wish them luck with it. I'm sure they recommended Vonage to their friends.
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