Review by Chris 313
Good "Ridiculously quick/easy set up, Cheaper then Cable VOIP, 7 Digit Dialing and more!"
- Location: Houma,Terrebonne,LA
- Cost: $36 per month
- Install: about 3 days
Bad "Had a slight issue with payment during set up, hinky ports on the VDV23-VD ATA"
Overall "If you're looking to ditch expensive cable voice, give Vonage a try."
Ease of Installation:
Value for money:
(ratings above consensus)
Well, here I am trying my hand at the VOIP ring again. Back in 2004, I got tired of AT&T after some major install woes and expense. The fact that we had just paid for install of jacks and all aside, my family started looking for an alternative for every day phone use.
Considering my new cable connection, I looked into Vonage, they didn't have the area code I wanted at the time. So that way out, otherwise I'd have Vonage now for almost a decade instead of just getting started. I found my actual VOIP service in AT&T CallVantage, the very company I was itching to leave: »/comment/46873
After a false start and some bad equipment, I got started and was with them from mid 2004 to June 2008 when I switched to Comcast Digital Voice service: »/comment/69517
I've had that service from 2008 to now, but recently the rising price and temporary deals have got me down. So I went looking at Vonage again after almost a decade. They seem to have everything I want.
I got my questions answered and went for it. Signed up without much problem until I got to the payment side of things. It wouldn't take my card. After a bit, I got to the final page and payment issues persisted, they told me to call them and give them a ref number. I did. Talked to a CSR named Mary after a moment on hold. She spoke english and I could understand her. She had a bit of an accent, though. Eh, I got everything she said . She took my card again and it went through after a few minutes and things got set up. My service is active with a temporary number, but since I don't have the box yet, I can't use the service.
She told me that I'll be receiving the hardware either this Friday or next monday. That's fast service if I do say so, especially with no activation, no shipping and free equipment.
It was also mentioned when I signed up that I'll be getting a 30 dollar Best Buy giftcard. I'll be using that to buy my new modem and cut the price down from 100 down to about 50 with the price matching and all. So yay!
When I get the Vonage box in, I'll also check the status of my number port as I requested to have my number transferred from Comcast to Vonage when I signed up.
If it doesn't work out though, I'll see about getting a number from Vonage themselves. I also looked into it when I was mock signing up, just in case. I found one pretty easy to memorize and it sticks in the head, so we'll see. I'm hoping I get my current number and everything goes ok.
More to come later, after I get service actually installed.
Well, on 6/6 I was told that my number transfer would happen on the 7th, the same day as I would get my Vonage Box in. It worked flawlessly. Number works perfectly too. Set up was mostly a snap. Had to reset my equipment to get everything to play nice, but after that, everything's cooking. Got 7 Digit dialing, so that's a plus. VOIP services have gone a long way since my 4 year encounter with AT&T CallVantage from 2004-2008.
The only 3 things that I've noticed that mar a perfect review across the board is the ATA box they sent for the service. They use a VDV23-VD unit according to the paperwork and the one I got seems to have a bad router port. The Cat 5 cable just slides right in, not even bothering to lock in like the modem port right next to it, so anyone can just come up and yank the cable right out with very little effort. Still, I can work around this and won't be bothered by this too much. If I am, I'll call up Vonage and have them send me a new box and see if that's it or if they're all like that?
And the second thing, the way it's currently hooked up to work is limiting my system to 100 Full Duplex vs 1000 without the Vonage box in the mix. Gonna get some answers to see what I can do to fix this. For an 80 dollar device, I think I expected more, but I'm not too bothered by this either. For every problem there is a solution.
The third thing is potentially dropped calls to some numbers. I called my girl, who was expecting the call beforehand and I tried 2 times and each time it rang, ending with a message about a VM inbox that hadn't been set up yet. When she finally picked up, she talked for 2 seconds and the call dropped. I think this was on her end since she said her signal was bouncing in and out. So we'll try again later and see. Every other call I made went through flawlessly and it may be just me, but I could swear everything's louder and clearer then it was with Comcast voice service.
Overall, I'm very satisfied with the service and look forward to putting Vonage through it's paces and saving 30 bucks a month at least on my bill.
More to come as I test this out and fix the issues I mentioned.
Well, I've got feelers out about the 30 dollar Best Buy and the hinky Vonage Box. I did manage to solve the hook up problem I was having. I was doing this: »www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl···7rxkKpt0
when I should've been doing this: »www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl···C09IwmMs
Seems I also didn't give everything enough time to shake hands. (Another product of my being tired at the time.)
Vonage has really made setting up their service dirt simple and much improved from my last VOIP experience.
Had a power outage in the afternoon today that killed everything, my UPS gave me enough time to shut everything off before power completely ran out, but I noticed I lost connection to my EMTA that my former Comcast Digital Voice service used to provide me their phone service. The battery didn't keep the connection up this time. It won't matter much longer as I'll be buying my own modem and using my existing UPS as my batteries for things like the Vonage Box, modem and router.
When the connection came back on, I noticed that the telephone related lights, including the battery one were off. Guess they really do only supply power from the battery to power only the phone service. Regardless, Vonage seems to have kept their word that after porting my number from Comcast Digital Voice to Vonage, they would have my Comcast voice service disconnected for me. I'm glad to see them keeping their word.
I love the service so far.
With the help of a fellow Vonage user and DSLR member, Netfixer I've solved my issue with the jacks on the back of the VDV23-VD that Vonage sent me to use with their service
"About the Ethernet cable not seating:
I seem to recall that with the VDV23 boxes (I no longer use that particular ATA for other reasons) the Ethernet ports require that you push hard (and also jostle the connector a bit) to override a threshold. Once that is done, the cable is very firmly seated (in fact removing it also requires a bit of jostling because it is very tight)."
That was exactly the issue and now I've solved it, I won't be unplugging that thing for anything. It's sad, since it should be just put it in, it clicks, done. And it's not.
Now all that I believe remains is to find out where is my 30 dollar Best Buy gift card? Once I find this out, I'll really be a happy camper...
Got my 30 dollar Best Buy gift card in the mail from Vonage today. Gonna use it to buy my own modem for my Comcast service. So far, I now have absolutely no complaints about the Vonage service. They did everything they've said they would.
Well, today, I noticed my 3 month Vonage intro at 17.44 a month has expired and I'm now paying full price at 35.01. Still, it's cheaper then Comcast's solution at 60 or more a month and with the gift card bought modem, I'm saving a total of 31.99 a month over my previous set up. I think I'll look into trying to get that 9.99 a month for life plan I've seen around. But if I don't, 35 bucks is not bad over what I had before.
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updated 101 days ago