Review by OmagicQ
Good "Dirt Cheap DIDs, acceptable CNAM"
- Location: Bakersfield,Kern,CA
- Cost: $4 per month
- Install: about 4 days
Bad "E911 fee"
Overall "Solid VSP with great customer support that won me over"
Ease of Installation:
Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)
Update 3/15/2011 Since my last update I have moved on to other providers but I still have some credit on Callcentric and I use it for testing and comparing with other providers from time to time. I also like to try out the new features when they become available. Even if I'm not actively using it, Its still my 'plumb line' to measure other services by. Callcentric has been and for the foreseeable future will remain a gold-standard company when it comes to voip..regardless of the color of its medal.
CC was my 2nd VSP and at first I was put off by the E911 fee and that they proxy the audio on calls. The idea of my phone calls having to go all the way to NY from CA seemed to me to be a recipe for disaster for voip calls with high latency and many potential points of failure for a UDP stream crossing the country. I even at one point wrote to CC support asking them to close out my account, that I'd never use it or fund it. They wrote back saying they would keep it open unless I insisted. I didn't care as I had no plan to ever use it again.
Well I'm happy to say I was mistaken. After putting up with downtime from a well-known free did provider, I took a chance on a dirt-cheap did that took about 4 days to activate since I used Paypal. Once it was working I set it up for GV and tried it out. After a few days there was no going back. The audio quality was better than I expected even after a cross country trip and the latency wasn't enough to really affect the audio. I enabled CNAM and it worked great with all the numbers I called from except my cellphone that showed a name that isn't mine, but as cellphones usually show WIRELESS CALLER I think my number may have been ported from a landline some time ago and I got it.
Today I changed from IP Freedom to Pay-per-call and on a test call my outbound CID was my GV number as I had requested shortly after signing up. Support has always been helpful and courteous even when I was a free customer. I don't know if its standard policy for CC not to close accounts even when the customer asks, but in this case it eventually got them a paying customer.
Update 10/13/09 After having used the service for a few weeks and tweaking the settings on my PAP2T and 2Wire modem/router I am satisfied with the service except for the per minute pricing. I have figured out what my average outbound usage will be and i've decided to move on to a VSP with lower rates and most of the features I'd use. CC has rock solid service and features and I still rate it highly.
Update 11/21/09 I use Google Voice as my public facing number and forward it to two numbers for simultaneous ring, my VSP number and my cellphone. This way I can receive calls even if my VSP has a service outage (hasn't happened or I haven't noticed yet). This has been working great but I've decided instead of using my cellphone as backup, I'd use the second port on my ATA with another provider. I'm back on Callcentric using a per-minute did as my backup. I could use an IPKall number but I want something more reliable and $3.45 a month for that reliability is a fair price to pay. F9 is still my main provider where my paid outbound calls will be made through (Still using GV for free outbound). This setup will give me redundancy in call reception without spending too much and E911 (which i will probably never use).
Update 12/17/09 I upgraded from a per-minute did to a dirtcheap did a while back. It's a dollar more but I don't have to watch the incoming minutes anymore. I've been using it more lately, getting calls while I'm on a call so I can just grab the other phone instead of trying to hook flash between calls. I can just mute the other phone to prevent being overheard.
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updated 3.7 years ago