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BroadVoice page on DSLReports
Six Month Rating Unavailable
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Reviews:
bullet 271 reviews (171 good) (63 bad)
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Review by benjamin See Profile

  • Location: New York,New York,NY
  • Cost: $34 per month
  • Install: about 2 days
Good "Excellent call quality, good tech support, many calling features, great account web site"
Bad "No option to set automatic forwarding to another number if network is down"
Overall "BroadVoice is a very good value, offering crystal-clear calling, a slew of advanced features and great international rates"
Web-site:
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My Other Reviews

·Vonage
·Verizon FiOS
2012 UPDATE

Finally had to leave BroadVoice. I nearly never call abroad and the fees kept increasing. It's too bad the company chose to hide many of these fees as quasi-taxes, the way many traditional telephone companies do. Why not be up-front and honest about this, as a VoIP company? When a $20/mo. plan turns into nearly $35, that just seems greedy.

Reliability had also become something of an issue. Though decent, service frequently stopped working on a given proxy server and I had to manually switch to another. Luckily, I knew how to do this, but the system never seemed to do it automatically, which would be an issue for most users.

2013 note: the company was acquired by a new parent company. Perhaps this will be a good thing, though after many months, there appear to have been no changes to the offerings.

6/14/2009 UPDATE

Once again, there isn't much to report. On the downside, few new features have been introduced. The two exceptions are "multiline" and "multipresence" support, which allow several lines on one account/device, or several devices on a single account. These options can definitely come in handy but it would be nice to see other features that have been missing for years, such as the ability to automatically forward calls to another number on network failure, scheduled do-not-disturb, and other such enhancements.

Reliability has been good. The proxy servers have issues from time to time (about once every few months) but they are usually promptly fixed. Overall, call quality remains very good and pricing excellent (despite the rate increases discussed in my last update).

Bottom line: BroadVoice is still an excellent choice, especially if you call abroad a lot and the countries you dial are included in one of the World plans. As mentioned in this review's comments, the BYOD plans are also a welcome option for the technically advanced who bring their own devices.

11/05/2008 UPDATE

Not much to report. Service has remained very stable. Only some very small outages that didn't last long, and that could be avoided by switching proxy servers.

A couple of notes on the downside:

- First, rates increased quite a bit earlier this year, under the guise of new "taxes" or "fees"--but these were in fact hidden rate increases and NOT taxes. Service is now about $32/month (not counting premium features), compared to $20 originally. (Review table updated to reflect this.) This is still an excellent value, considering the number of free countries included and the numerous calling features upon which I have come to rely.

- Second, no new features have been introduced in ages.

EDIT (11/08/2008), two new features added: Well, a couple of features were added the day after my review update:

- The ability to add inbound numbers to the second port of supported ATAs. This means that an alternate number can be answered (on a separate phone) while the primary line is in use. A very nice idea of no great use to me but certainly of value to those who need a dedicated second line for inbound calls.

- BroadVoice has also finally added the ability to manage multiple lines from one account. This has been in the works for a long time.

Hopefully this means the company has started innovating again and other new features will start appearing soon!

BroadVoice continues to offer excellent service with a large array of existing features and still very competitive pricing. I have many family members and friends using the service and there have been no complaints. I maintain my 4 1/2 star recommendation.

--------------------------------

02/10/2008 UPDATE

Can't believe I've been with BroadVoice for over 4 years now. Following the 2005 outage, service has continued to be ideal for my needs. There have been no outages since my last update. Reliability and call quality have been excellent.

My only peeve is that BroadVoice still doesn't offer the option to have all calls automatically directed to an alternate number if their network fails. Luckily there haven't been any outages, so this hasn't really mattered.

After BroadVoice started offering unlimited free calls to 20 countries, other providers started following suit but, for my needs, BV remains the best value around. I don't really have anything negative to say at this point.

--------------------------------

12/19/2005 UPDATE

Things have been running smoothly for the last 6 months. Excellent quality/reliability. Some new features have been added to the online portal and BroadVoice seems to have hired more support staff to deal with the growth of its customer base. No downtime in a long, long time so I am very happy. Quality of international calls definitely improved after the outage in May.

--------------------------------

05/11/2005 UPDATE

BroadVoice's first big outage is over. Unfortunately the outage began right before a week-end, which must have made it harder to contain. Still, the company worked around the clock and service was restored by Monday. During the outage, I was still able to make and receive calls, though with less reliability than usual. Now things are back to normal.

What impressed me most during the outage was that Support answered phone calls within 10-12 minutes, very reasonable considering there must have been a very high volume of calls. Info was also posted in the portal. Considering service was rock solid for many, many months prior to this outage, BroadVoice deserves a little slack. If anything, such an experience will make sure they are better prepared in the future.

--------------------------------

02/12/2005 UPDATE

Given some of the negative reviews and updates posted recently, I wanted to update mine to report that service has remained rock-solid for me. The calling features still work, call quality is superb and BroadVoice keeps rolling out new services at great prices. Two recent examples: alternate numbers in the UK, and toll-free alternate numbers. So, here is a quick update on the new features and the quality of customer support as of February, 2005. (Original review below as well.)

TOLL FREE Alternate Numbers: I just added one to my account and it is working well. The amazing thing is that it costs the same as a regular alternate number: $1.95/month, which is lower than any other VoIP company AFAIK. This includes 60 free incoming minutes (and extra minutes are 2.0¢/min, VERY reasonable for a toll-free number). There were some issues with the toll free DIDs, where not all callers were able to get through but this has been fixed. I tested my DID from numerous lines (from different providers) and can now receive calls without a hitch. Really great for friends in other states, especially those on limited local service...

For those who may be interested, the alternate UK numbers are the same price but include unlimited incoming calls, just like US-based alternate numbers.

CUSTOMER SERVICE. Many of the recent negative remarks concerned ridiculously long hold times. I concur that this was a problem for a couple of weeks but things seem much better now. I called several times in the last few days and got through to someone within a reasonable delay. More importantly, the people answering the phones are still knowledgeable. BroadVoice is not outsourcing its support (as of yet) and clearly takes the time to train its representatives. Email support has remained excellent throughout.

--------------------------------

11/09/2004, COMPLETE UPDATE OF ORIGINAL REVIEW

In October, BroadVoice added unlimited calling to 20 international countries without raising rates, making it the best value around. Now the company has launched its brand new online portal, resolving the only other area that was lacking.

The new portal: in addition to excellent online billing options (statements, payment options, etc.), the portal offers complete control over accounts, allowing users to add alternate lines, change their calling plan and much more. Of course, all the calling features (basic, advanced and premium) can also be managed through the portal, and there are extensive call logs as well as a Call Manager feature that allows for online control of incoming and outgoing calls. The whole experience is very user friendly, making this portal the one to beat.

As of the date of this update, I have been using BroadVoice for close to 1 year and service is as good today as it was on day one. Prior to choosing BroadVoice, I looked at every VoIP provider on the marked. After these many months of usage, I am pleased to report that BroadVoice has gotten even better with age. There are more features, the call quality remains excellent, and the new portal makes managing any aspect of the service a snap.

-- VALUE:

There are many reasons to choose BroadVoice but the top one would have to be value. For the price of its competitors' offerings (or for less in many cases), BroadVoice offers a wide array of free calling features that make competing services look sparse. In fact, it seems to me BroadVoice offers more features than any other provider, most of them included with the price of service. Additionally, adding "premium" features costs much less than with the competition (for example, additional phone numbers are only $1.95/month vs. around $5-10 with other providers).

BroadVoice also recently added unlimited International calling to 20 countries (as well as a new plan with 34 free countries for only $5/month more), once again placing the company miles above the rest in terms of value. For any countries not included, BroadVoice has lowered rates to match or beat its toughest competitors. There is also a new referral program that makes earning free calls easy.

-- FEATURES:

As stated above, calling features are numerous. Some really nice ones include the ability to check Voicemails from any phone and any computer, via the account portal. One can also receive messages by email. The online portal offers complete control over all features, including the ability to set call forwarding, toggle features on/off, maintain a list of speed dial numbers and much more. All the features I need are included in my plan, although it is worth mentioning that "premium" features (such as music-on-hold) come with an activation fee. However, the monthly fee for these services is much lower than the competition, making them worthwhile, and many features are not offered by anyone else.

-- CALL QUALITY:

Call quality? One word: impressive. In fact, the quality is as good as a traditional phone line both on the calling and receiving end. This is the one thing that always surprises those I refer. A special note on International calls: the quality is as good as US calls, which is nothing short of amazing, since quality can be iffy over traditional phone lines or using a calling card.

-- TECH ISSUES, SETUP AND SUPPORT:

Support has been impressive from the get go, always answering phone calls and emails promptly, and fixing issues quickly (usually in minutes). Setup is a breeze. My Linksys router didn't require any modifications and I was up and running literally 30 seconds after receiving my adaptor. A router is of course needed to share your broadband connection with the BroadVoice adaptor and your computer but this is to be expected. This and many other topics are covered on BroadVoice's support web site, where you can find step-by-step guides and a great deal of useful information.

For the truly tech-savvy, BroadVoice is the only provider to offer BYOD (bring your own device) plans. The device in question can be hardware or software and all the necessary configuration information is provided, something unique in this industry. BroadVoice also automatically provisions your device immediately upon sign-up, so that the service can be used in a minutes.

Other technical issues (codecs, etc.) have been widely addressed in the BBR VoIP forum so I won't go into any details here. One additional hardware note: BroadVoice recently started shipping a new adaptor. Small and sleek, it is about the size of a deck of cards but doesn't skimp on features.

-- CONCLUSIONS:

Some prospective customers may be worried by BroadVoice's low rates, thinking this might translate into poor quality or bad support. This is not the case. Quite the contrary! I think this is what truly makes BroadVoice the best value: not only is the service easy to use and feature-rich but the call quality is top-notch and support is available 24x7. Having had BroadVoice from the very beginning (for close to one year now), I continue to recommend it highly.

member for 13.5 years, 3294 visits, last login: 23 days ago
updated 118 days ago

Comments:

Review by Napsterbater See Profile

  • Location: Milledgeville,Baldwin,GA
  • Cost: $26 per month
Good "Price, They allow BYOD, Rural area number selection, Only one problem wich was fixed quickly."
Bad "None"
Overall "Iv been very pleased, They where one of the only providers that offered local numbers in my area 478-387-xxxx."
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My Other Reviews

·Windstream
Update 01-16-11: Rocking strong with no issues at all.

Update 05-23-09: Nothing really to report service is still great.

We got Broadvoice to ditch our $40 Local/Long phone service (which was pay per min. long distance) form our phone co. and couldn't be happier. $26 per month includes unlimited local/long distance (US) and a second number for a different area code. They provide E911 and allow BYOD.

I'm using 3CX's windows based PBX with a Linksys SPA-3102.

member for 11.5 years, 4411 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 3.5 years ago

Comments:

Review by dustman81 See Profile

  • Location: Akron,Summit,OH
  • Cost: $12 per month
  • Install: about 5 days
Good "Cheap in-state calling, extremely easy setup"
Bad "Had trouble calling out at first, but it resolved itself"
Overall "Cheap VoIP service"
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4/25/05 - Decided to get a local number and found Broadvoice. Ordered the VoIP adapter and it was shipped via FedEx. It just arrived today. Installation was extremely simple. Plugged the Sipura adapter into my router, the phone cable into my phone and the adapter got sync. At first, I was able to receive calls, but not make them. I waited a 1/2 hour and was able to place calls then. Most people says it sounds like a regular phone.

Good cheap VoIP plan, which is what I was looking for.

6/19/05 - After getting a new phone (5.8 Ghz, my previous was a 2.4 Ghz which was interferring with my router) and updating the firmware in my Sipura 1001 to 3.1.3, sound quality was much improved. Sounds just like a POTS line, just for a lot less. And as a bonus, my 1001 now, thanks to the 3.1.3 upgrade can have 2 seperate VoIP accounts.

2009 - Since I got Google Voice, I no longer needed Broadvoice. They canceled without any issues and let me keep the Sipura.

member for 12.1 years, 2225 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 3.8 years ago

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Review by Atomsplash See Profile

  • Location: Nevada
  • Business customer Business customer
  • Cost: $20 per month
Good "Have only had to call tech support twice in 2 years, both times were helpful (first time was problem with my router)"
Bad "I get random drops/reboots on my phone, using their CFG, an SPA941 - but it may just be the phone."
Overall "Good price for good service, and no contract."
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I pay $20/month, have had few issues, and am not stuck in a contract (Vonage made me pay a cancellation fee, apparently I was in a 2 year contract with them).

member for 3.8 years, 46 visits, last login: 2.2 years ago
lodged 3.8 years ago

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Review by eyetack See Profile

  • Location: Leicester,Worcester,MA
  • Cost: $11 per month
  • Install: about 30 days
Good "Very inexpensive for a light user."
Bad "Number port took weeks."
Overall "Awesome VoIP service!"
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I originally ordered my BroadVoice service to complement some Asterisk stuff I was working on and after I switched my Internet service from DSL to cable, I decided to port my voice line as well.

The actual port took forever. I've been a BV customer for a couple years, so I don't remember the full amount of time, but it was pretty close to 30 days after providing the letter of authorization to do so. This is the only negative in my whole of experience.

I use the BYOD plan, so I am currently providing my own terminal adapter, which has been extremely convenient. The base price is also $5.95 per month, which works out to $11.42 after taxes on most months. I rarely use the phone, so this inexpensive plan suits my needs quite well.

member for 11.8 years, 127 visits, last login: 306 days ago
lodged 4.9 years ago

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Review by bodosom See Profile

  • Location: Middleport,Niagara,NY
  • Cost: $8 per month (month by month)
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "You can bring your own device (BYOD)"
Bad "No support for your own device, Java call manager only works with Windows."
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My Other Reviews

·Time Warner Cable
Update Jan 2007.
I choose BV because the price was reasonable and they let me use my own device (asterisk).
I continue to use BV because they service is acceptable and the DID price is reasonable.

Update Apr 2009.
Broadvoice is still of value although their "taxes" double my monthly BYOD bill. I still like the free toll-free outbound and free in-bound but the surfeit of minutes on my mobile plan makes this less useful.

member for 10.3 years, 706 visits, last login: 9 days ago
updated 5.3 years ago

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Review by dsplscam2 See Profile

  • Location: Eaton,Weld,CO
  • Cost Contract price not specified.
Good "Customer support tries to resolve issues"
Bad "Billing and Customer support"
Overall "I would not recommend"
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Signed up for them back in October to try and save money on my phone bill. Initially, was getting a lot of echo's on the line and dropped calls. They were able to resolve the echo problem fairly quickly. After 3 weeks of service and continued dropped calls, I contacted them to cancel my service. They convinced me that they could resolve the problem and to stick around longer. Two months later and several dropped calls, I canceled my service. At this point, since I went over 30 days, they charged me $39.99 cancellation fee.

Customer support was pretty good, but their billing department needs some fixing. The problems you have with voip is not worth the money saved.

member for 9.7 years, 1 visits, last login: 5.4 years ago
lodged 5.4 years ago

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Review by rocku24_7 See Profile

  • Location: Pompano Beach,Broward,FL
  • Cost: $13 per month
Good "the installation was easy as abc"
Bad "wait time to speak to a rep. is toooo long"
Overall "just as good with feautre & service as vonage without the higher cost"
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Well after two years with VOIP, I must say its being a real benefit. I was introduced to the technology through Vonage (unlimited US, CAN) and couldn’t believe that a call through the internet could be so good. Back then the term SIP (session initiated protocol) had no meaning to me, but after a 7 month spree with Vonage and techno mind at heart. I quickly learn the business (for detail see Vonage review). After learning the technical stuff I when looking for better prices I found Lingo for 19.95 down from 24.95 ( at one point it was $30 with Vonage). I also got a basic backup from Bellsouth for $22 month (yes back to POT after month of VOIP). I still have this line because I am in a hurricane zone, and the bells get things up and running quicker that any internet or voip provider. I had lingo 19.95 + bell 22, FWD, stantaphone.com, ipkall.com, voipbuster.com, and sipdiscount.com for 13 months (I will write a review for lingo at a later time but to sum it up “not worth the trouble but there were the cheapest thing to Vonage). But like I said price rule in voip world so I got me a sipura 3000 (no voip house should go without one) I learnt more playing with my sipura in 2 months than the 19 before then. I use my sipura to subscribe to a little not so know provider call Linefire because they are still the only voip I knew that offered unlimited plan to the US, CAN, Jamaica and the rest of the Caribbean @34.95. Cool and the where reliable as say lingo which I continue to have because there had a # I ported from the Bell, I even had a second # @ that price. Four month into Linefire, I dump lingo I couldn’t take there India rep. (no offence to the great country of India. ‘The miss told me to add that, you see her is Indian and a fine one at that.) whom at this point, I knew more than.

Then as fate may have it Linefire, my primary provider merge with ITP.com who cancelled all Linefire plans. So with no competitive advantage to offers I was left with few choices, go back to low tech lingo or try Broadvoice which bring us to why I am here. BV with there BYOD plan play perfect for my sipura setup with gateway functionality. They also priced well for 19.95 you get US, Can and 21 international country (no of which is JA or Caribbean for that matter), they also have the best web management portal second only to Vonage. But like I said there don’t answer the phone, but when they do they know there stuff. You may notice that Vonage is the benchmark by which all other VOIP is measured, this is by no means a testament to there superiority instead it is only because there were my first.



member for 10 years, 870 visits, last login: 319 days ago
updated 5.6 years ago

Comments:

Review by wifi4milez See Profile

  • Location: New York,New York,NY
  • Cost: $25 per month
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Super cheap calls, sounds good most of the time!"
Bad "Sometimes I notice a little static on the line"
Overall "If you want to try VoIP without spendng much, try Broadvoice"
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10/30/2008 UPDATE:

I still use Broadvoice as my main "home phone", and it still rarely costs me over $20 per month. I highly recommend it, as I have never once had to call their tech support in almost 3 years. PLEASE NOTE, I STILL DONT THINK ANYONE SHOULD USE VoIP AS THEIR PRIMARY VOICE SERVICE DUE TO 9/11 ISSUES.

Original Review from 2006:

I have a $5.95 per month BYOD (bring your own device) package. This allows me to use my laptop, cell phone, AND regular phone as extensions of my Broadvoice phone number. No matter where I go people can reach me and I can place calls using any internet connected device. I currently have a hacked Linksys PAP2 that I use with a traditional cordless phone so that when I am at home I have the convenience of a regular POTS line (in addition to the 2 Verizon POTS lines I have for backup!). The plan I am on gives me 100 minutes of outgoing calls to anywhere in the US and Canada, with an overage of only $0.039 cents per minute. By the time my extra minutes are compiled along with the fees I am close to about $25 per month. Between the BYOD interface and my PAP2 I have TONS of call options and features to play with. I would say the uptime is about 95%, which seems to be better than most.

!!!!!IMPORTANT NOTICE!!!!!!

It is my OPINION that NO VoIP (Voice over IP) telephone service provider is up to par with even the most basic POTS (plain old telephone service) you get from the local telephone company. Although I do like Broadvoice, please notice that I only give it a 90% to 95% uptime rating. This means that you SHOULD EXPECT approximately 1 in 10 calls to drop, cut off, or otherwise NOT be completed. You should also be aware that VoIP phone service DOES NOT SUPPORT 911! I have TWO backup Verizon analog lines in my house just for emergencies. If you have kids or feel that you may EVER need to dial 911, or if having a 100% reliable phone is important to you, DO NOT ORDER ANY VOIP SERVICE FROM ANY PROVIDER.

member for 9.9 years, 2536 visits, last login: 1.2 years ago
updated 5.7 years ago

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Review by Technetium2 See Profile

  • Location: Butler,Morris,NJ
  • Cost: $35 per month
  • Install: about 2 days
Good "Reliability, Price"
Bad "Outbound CID doesn't show name"
Overall "Suits my needs well"
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I have a Vonage line for personal use, but wanted to avoid shelling out $50 monthly for my startup business so decided to try BV. I've been using them since Jan, 2008 now.

They promptly sent out a Linksys SPA2102-R, which has 1 ethernet port and 2 phone ports. It's small and lightweight, measuring 4"square and 1.5"thick, not taking up much desk space at all.

I don't make or receive a huge amount of calls, but inbound and outbound quality has always been good, and reliability has been 100% so far.

The feature list is pretty full, with simultaneous ring on several phones, call hold, call transfer, of course CID and call waiting, as well as a few phone number specific things. For example, I can block individual numbers from calling in, give numbers a distinctive ring, or have numbers be forwarded to different phones.

I haven't tested or used most of thee features, but it is a longer list than I have with V.

One BIG issue for me, as a business user, is that it doesn't show my company name (or any name) on outbound CID. The people I call just see the city and state I'm calling from, which is how many cell phones appear.

My business is a one man show, and I can't help feeling that it occasionally makes a bad impression that customers think I'm using a mobile phone as a business line.

I did call them to ask about this. They answered quickly, but basically told me that that's just the way it is, and there are no intentions to change it that they know of.

It cost me $90.42 to get started, that includes the first month of service.
The listed cost for the unlimited business plan is $29.99, then they add $5.47 in fees:

$2.50 Regulatory Recovery Fee
$1.00 Emergency 911 Cost Recovery Fee
$1.97 Universal Service Fee

I'm not crazy about fees, but Vonage charges me 17% more in extra fees than this on a personal line, so I can't complain.

I can also say that over 10 months of use, the price hasn't gone up at all yet.

Overall, definitely a good value. Do be aware that you won't have outbound CID name if you use them though.

member for 6.3 years, 5 visits, last login: 3.3 years ago
updated 5.7 years ago

Comments: