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ViaTalk page on DSLReports
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Reviews:
bullet 488 reviews (324 good) (105 bad)
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Review by unknvoip See Profile

  • Location: Rochester,Monroe,NY
  • Cost: $12 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 10 days
Good "Features & Price"
Bad "None"
Overall "Reliable service, great features and a great price ."
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

Update 9/4/14 - The DSLReports review reminder popped up. No changes in the service for me. Still happy with quality and features. Reliability has been great. Best features keep the telemarketers from actually being able to ring my phone. Those that do make it through, only do so once.

------------ Original review with older updates appended to end below -------------------------

Have had several months of flawless service, while a few on the forums here have had other experiences. As things stand right now, will probably stay with the service when my current term is up next spring. My favorite feature is custom call routing. Love to forward telemarketers to my cell so I yell at them a few times before forwarding them to the 'Blacklisted' list.

Customer Service can be hit or miss on their helpfulness as some reps are much more capable than others. Some who answer my tickets on-line are completely clueless - sometimes giving me answers that could not remotely apply to my issue.

On the up side, I have only had very few occasional outages for short periods of time.

-- Update history --

Update 10/3/06 - Server upgrades are done and my intermittent outages have ended. Network Down Forward worked great when my cable modem froze up last week. Becoming more satisfied again.

Update 8/10/07 - In the midst of all the Sunrocket users coming over and bogging down Customer Service with install/port/technical issues, the service has been fine for me.

Update 10/16/07 - Very upset over changing the rules of E911 charges after public statement they would not charge for those on pre-paid plans until after renewal. CS rep said they would honor that, but only after my insistence. There needs to be a category for Integrity for the ranking. I would give them a 2/5 on that right now! Lowered other ratings over this issue. This is just plan wrong - what will they do next????

Update 11/28/07 - They have reversed the 911 charges for those prepaid before 10/06 if they contact VT. Better than not honoring prior statements. They seem to have stabilized from the SR debacle. Made a positive change to their TOS to make cancellation less painful. Current thought is to go month-to-month when pre-paid terms are up in 04/09.

Updated 6/23/08 - Working so well for me last few months, forgot to come back and update my review. Happy customer at the moment.

Update 7/29/08 - Recently had my VT supplied adapter blow out in an electrical storm. VT was good and sent out a replacement the next day. Only problem was they did not set up my provisioning of the new adapter to match the old one. I have not been able to get them to respond to tickets to update my provisioning file or to the ones to fix the things that don't work properly because of it (Time and VMWI, specifically). Other than that, service for me has been VERY reliable.

Update 1/23/09 - Through migration to new infrastructure all has been well. No problems ever on calls. CS has become more responsive to my tickets. Others seem to have some issues, but I don't experience any of those things. Added a beta area of CP for new features and feedback. Contacts working better than when first implemented. Ratings increased as a result.

Update 3/10/09 - Made it through the DST change just fine. That had been an issue with my service in the past. While mine was fine, I know some other DSL users had some issues. Insist support sets correct time zone and applies the right DST rule to you adapter and you should be fine.

Update 11/12/09 - It has been a smooth summer for my service. Just works. Call logs have been improved and a few other features have been upgraded in recent months. Decided to renew in Sept. I would still like to see the Contacts section of the CP improved. Overall a very good value for me, so I choose not to pursue switching to a competing service. I have a lot of configuration set to filter calls that I did not want to reproduce and I did not want to risk having to go through the tweaks sometimes necessary with a new provider.

Update 3/30/10 - They continue to develop and enhance features and I recently noticed and issue with how DND feature handled time periods that wrapped the day boundary. Issue was resolved within a couple days and I was provided with a work-around until the fix was implemented. To me, Tech Support now seems that it is where it should be. Very satisfied at the moment.

Update 10/27/10 - Just learned that pre-pay is gone. Now the plans are $17/mo, take it or leave it. I guess I will be looking for another lower cost, but still quality provider that matches my low volume calling needs.

11/8/10 - Pre-pay is gone, but now they have added a light usage plan. $10.95 + tax/fees for 2000 minutes outgoing a month. It takes me 2 years for 2000 outgoing. This will be a great deal for me and keep me from having to uproot and move on. I have adjusted my ratings back appropriately to reflect an improved value for the money.

2/22/11 - last week pulled trigger on the BOGO @ $189. Good with VT for two more years. Been with them almost 5 now. Still working well for me, although I would love to see that Android app come out.

8/3/11 - It just works. Worst thing that happened to me is I noticed my DND settings did not adjust with DST. Submitted a ticket and CS cheerfully moved them all for me. Also let me know they are working on having that be automatic. The best compliment I can give them is: they save me money and I seldom have to think about them.

12/12/11 - Same thing with the switch to standard time. Servers have been solid for me and twice yearly adjustment of my DND settings is not a big deal.

6/13/12 - I just got my 6-month nag from DSLReports to update my review. Not much has changed. Very rare cases of one-way audio from time to time, but otherwise very reliable service. Passed my 6 year anniversary in April.

2/25/13 - I just renewed for two more years. For me service has been rock solid. No issues during Sandy. No issues during Irene last year. No issues during Nemo. No issues any other time. Not a lot of new features, but the filter on incoming calls are so flexible that I almost never get telemarketer calls. If one slips through, they never do again. They don't have an Android app, but the mobile browser site works nicely. I am actually upping my Web-site rating. It works well, but is a little cluttered. I would give it a 9/10. I am marking it up from 75% because that is too low and my true evaluation is closer to the 5/5.

Update 2/6/14 - The DSLReports review reminder popped up. No changes in the service for me. Still happy with quality and features. Reliability has been great.

member for 8.1 years, 3760 visits, last login: a few minutes ago
updated 16 days ago

Comments:

Review by rolande See Profile

  • Location: Powell,Delaware,OH
  • Cost: $15 per month (month by month)
  • Install: about 9 days
Good "Good pricing model with bundled features and SIP open access"
Bad "Lack of order confirmation required me to continually contact support to verify order was actually placed"
Overall "Best bang for the buck! Good call quality, decent set of features, and most importantly support SIP open access"
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

My Other Reviews

·AT&T U-Verse
I did a lot of reading of reviews and comparing all the various VoIP provider service offerings out there. I wasn't looking for the cheapest service but something reasonable that offered good call quality (i.e. manage their network latency and jitter well) with a decent feature set and most importantly provide SIP open access to their service.

ViaTalk, in my opinion, has the best mix of call features, package pricing/variety, and call quality of all the providers I spent time reviewing.

I was looking for a provider to integrate into my existing Cisco CallManager Express installation at home as a second line initially for testing. Every other provider I was looking at either didn't offer open access to a SIP proxy or else they had strings or conditions attached to use of the SIP proxy like much higher cost etc. ViaTalk not only supports open access to their SIP proxies but practically encourages it. No matter what service you sign up for, all you have to do is send them an email requesting credentials for the SIP proxy and they will grant you access.

The only downside has been the ordering process/communication. They recently had a big sales promotion which increased their customer service request volume and slowed things down. Understandable. However, I placed an order for the vt_500 package with the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) option online and got a response screen stating that I should receive confirmation within 24 to 48 hours via email. I never got a confirmation email. I watched other people posting in forum threads regarding the order slowdown and I put on my patience hat. However, I still had a nagging feeling that I needed to at least get some form of confirmation so that I made sure I wasn't wasting my time waiting for nothing. So, it took me several days of logging into their Live Online Chat option and asking questions before I got somewhere. A customer shouldn't have to do that just to get confirmation. I wasn't asking for service to be made available right away. I just wanted that warm fuzzy feeling that they were working on it. That's all!

Anyway, I finally got connected to a rep who checked the ordering system and found my order. She wasn't sure why I hadn't received a confirmation email. She pushed it through the system and I got an email within about 15 minutes with all of the info that I needed to get started and log in.

When I got home from work, I completed the SIP configuration on my router with the login credentials. I ended up making just over an hour call to a friend of mine out in San Jose, right after I got it working. I am definitely happy with the call quality. No pauses, distortion, echo, feedback or anything during the whole call. The only sound was the normal background noise generated automatically by my Cisco IP phone. It was much better than a cell phone call.

I ran quite a few tests at different times of the day for the providers who I could find a domain name for one of their SIP proxies. By far the best and most consistent latency was to the SIP proxy for ViaTalk in their Manhattan POP. Here is one set of results...

--- neptune.vtnoc.net ping statistics ---

33 packets transmitted, 33 received, 0% packet loss, time 32318ms

rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 26.106/27.317/28.899/0.645 ms

So, I average about 27.317 milliseconds to their SIP proxy with a median jitter of .645 milliseconds. That is pretty darn good for the Internet. I can not complain with that kind of performance. The good thing is I know that I get pretty consistent latency performance and uptime on my SBC DSL connection, so that will add to the quality and reliability.

Overall I am quite pleased so far with how it has turned out. If it goes well for the rest of the month, I am going to can my long distance service with the Incumbent LEC that they are swindling me with for close to $60/month. I have to keep the POTS line for my DSL service so I'll use it as my backup landline for 911 and other emergencies etc. as well as all my normal inbound calls.

I called my parents up in Ontario, a few hours north of Toronto, and the call quality was noticably lower than compared to the calls I have placed within the US. I would compare it to a choppy cell phone call with occasional echo, delays, and static. I can deal with that for now for the price. The good thing is I don't call all that often, so it doesn't bother me that much. I can also call them on their US based cell phone number and the call quality is much better.

Here is a link to my Call Manager Express Configuration for your reference:

»rolande.wordpress.com/2007/12/09···/#config

I'll update my review as we begin to use it more regularly and get a better feel for call quality/reliability throughout the day and week.

member for 12.3 years, 4256 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 87 days ago

Comments:

Review by huntermcdole See Profile

  • Location: Tucson,Pima,AZ
  • Cost: $9 per month (24 month contract)
  • Install: about 7 days
Good "Good Price, Good Sound Quality"
Bad "Tech support a little swamped"
Overall "Great price, tech support a little swamped"
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

My Other Reviews

·Cox HSI

--- Update Jan 2014 ---

Still no real issues with ViaTalk, every time I am up for renewal I wait until I get the 2 years for the price of one. Never switched to the Lite plan as they no longer offer it.

--- Update Aug 15 2011 ---

So far no issues with ViaTalk. Looking at switching to the lower Unlimited Lite plan as it's 2000 minutes per month, and that takes me over 6 months to reach....

---Original Review----

Signed up on July 13th 2007 for the BOGO deal. Figured I wouldn't need Rush Service since SunRocket was still up. Come Monday the 16th I realized that was wrong. Had them add rush service on 7/18/07 and it was processed that night. After a few days after my order had shipped I used my unlocked Innomedia with the soft phone settings to get myself up and running while the adapter was in route. Call quality is great, I have submitted a few tickets and they are a little slow on answering me, but most of them have been answered in about 3 - 7 days. I feel that the quality is good and expect support to get better after the influx of customers is dealt with. ATA they sent me was a new Linksys PAP2T.

member for 9.1 years, 2261 visits, last login: 2 days ago
updated 240 days ago

Comments:

Review by im_chandave See Profile

  • Location: Cleveland,Cuyahoga,OH
  • Cost: $8 per month (24 month contract)
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Strong presence at BBR, willing to listen to customer base, knowledgeable staff"
Bad "feature creep without root-cause diag of previous problems (DTMF is a major one)"
Overall "Well worth the effort in researching and evaluating the company before signing with one of their Special Deals"
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

My Other Reviews

·ObiVoice
Been with ViaTalk for more than a month now. Joined during their Birthday special. As a result, I signed on for 1 year @ $199 with an additional year for free. As a BYOD, I didn't have any other charges except the $199.

The SIP credentials came within 8 hours of my signup. Had no problems setting up my Asterisk box to use their service. The only problem was DTMF for inbound calls. My Asterisk system pops callers into an IVRS menu system. I've had to switch from rfc2833 to inbound DTMF signaling. This made my system much less reliable for my inbound callers.

Ultimately, I think I'll have to tweak the DTMF recognition system on Asterisk to get it to work better with ViaTalk.

I do have hiccups during some SIP REGISTERs. Sometimes, their system would return "503 Server error". But, upon next scheduled SIP REGISTER, all is fine.

They've had one breakdown during my first month. It appeared that eastern/neptune.vtnoc.net and several of the servers around it became isolated from the production network. As a result, no REGISTERations to the SIP proxy and no access to my account information via their web-based user interface. That was resolved within an 8 hour timeframe.

[2007-08-17]

Just wanted to update my review of ViaTalk. Despite the avalanche of new subscribers due to the demise of Sun Rocket, ViaTalk has been consistently reliable TO MY STANDARD. That means my phone service has not been down for more than 30 minutes since I joined.

I have had problems: clicking noises (but that was isolated to a single day); dropped calls; static on the line (at that time, I was using a Cisco hardphone routed through an Asterisk server); missing ringing tone while waiting for the remote end to answer; DTMF tone not being recognized (now fixed by sending DTMF using SIP INFO and receiving DTMF as inband), and customer portal not working properly with SeaMonkey (fixed now). Most have been resolved.

Overall, I would still recommend them for BYOD people that KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING and UNDERSTAND HOW TO SETUP THEIR OWN DEVICES (ATA and Router). If you are not a knowledgeable BYODer, then get the ATA from them.

[2010-12-15]

Just renewed for another 2 years with a buy-one-get-one-free package. Occasionally have some call quality problems but not so annoying that it would push me to another VOIP provider just yet.

But, Viatalk's internal groups should communicate with each other better. I found out about the 12+12 deal via DSLReports instead of directly from Viatalk...EVEN THOUGH I ASKED VIATALK 2 DAYS EARLIER ABOUT RENEWAL PACKAGES!!!

[2011-10-07]

Short update on my service. Nothing new to report. It works. I have not had any problems. It is acting like an appliance. When I need it to work, it just works. Re-upped back in Dec 2010 for another 2 years. Will not need to think about the service until January 2013. When that happens, I hope to be able to re-subscribe for another 2 years (pre-paid) like I did this time. If not, then I'll start looking for another option.

[2014-01-23]

Another boring update. Again, nothing new to report. It has been working fine since my last update in 2011. Renewed for 2 more years back in Jan 2013. Was able to pre-pay the regulatory and E911 fees for the 2 years. I haven't needed to trouble-shoot it for problems. It works when ever I send a call to them or receive a call from them. My Asterisk server has had no problems connecting with their SIP servers. I pump through around 1500 minutes of use a month with no problems encountered. Overall, the service has been reliable, lacking in drama, and boring...exactly what I expect from a great telco service.

member for 9.1 years, 1969 visits, last login: 4 days ago
updated 241 days ago

Comments:

Review by jomobco See Profile

  • Location: Parker,Douglas,CO
  • Cost: $12 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 5 days
Good "Easy to use, hardware provided, decent call quality"
Bad "very rarely glitchy"
Overall "great bang for the buck. 1 Year promos often under 10 bux per month"
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

I just recently left them when we decided we really use our mobiles more than home phones and decided to make our VOIP line a google voice number. We used Viatalk for over 6 years and at 2 different locations. They were easy to work with and had very little down time that we noticed. They definitely improved over the years we were with them. I loved the features on the website which allow you to customize incoming call routing. It was easy to tag a solicitor and even forward them somewhere else! I love sending all the political calls I got to their other parties donation line! If we went back to VOIP I would go back to Viatalk.

member for 270 days, 1 visits, last login: 209 days ago
updated 270 days ago

Comments:

Review by mfoam99 See Profile

  • Location: Parkersburg,Wood,WV
  • Cost: $13 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 12 days
Good "it works!"
Bad "occasional glitches but they are resolved quickly"
Overall "great value"
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

10/29/13

I cancelled my service about 6 months ago due to personal reasons. I recently signed back up and use a linksys router and have noticed even better call quality than what I had in the past when i had my old D-link router. I am very satisfied with Viatalk.

I have been listening to a coworker tell me how great (and not so great ) VOIP is for the last two years but it took my until now to finally give it a try (and I am known for being tight with my money). I ordered viatalk phone service unlimited plan buy one year and get one year free right before the Thanksgiving holiday. Probably it was a combination of the holiday and the promotion and my impatience but it seemed like it took forever for me to receive my adapter, in reality it was about 12 days. I might be turning into a geek I don't know but when my wife called me at work and told me that the adapter had arrived I ordered a pizza, and picked up a six pack of beer and thought to myself that I would spend the evening hooking up the phone. Its funny I was actually disappointed that it only took me about 5 minutes to plug it in and it worked. I used the service for about a month before porting my number from Verizon, which took about 14 days. Overall I am very satisfied with Viatalk. I use the Wakeup call everyday and am continuing to discover other features all of the time.

Oh yea I have a D-link modem using cable internet with a 3MB download /356 upload and a D-link router

member for 7.8 years, 435 visits, last login: 152 days ago
updated 326 days ago

Comments:

Review by jandy See Profile

  • Location: Fort Wayne,Allen,IN
  • Cost: $12 per month (24 month contract)
  • Install: about 13 days
Good "Great customer service, great user forums, great call quality"
Bad "installation was hard for me, product is maturing"
Overall "Very solid service; few quirks here and there; WAY better (and cheaper) than POTS."
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

UPDATE 08.18.13

Just renewed for another two years. Solid service, no outages. Can't believe that my PAP2T still works like a clock. Very happy with the service. Can't beat the features you get for the price. VT is a lot quieter these days in terms of board participation. They haven't updated their blog on their website for quite a while, but everything is working great.

UPDATE 08.15.11

Still with VT. No service issues since last update. Don't see myself changing anytime soon. If it ain't broken...

UPDATE 03.15.11

I have now been a VT customer for over four years, and over that time the service has been extremely reliable. The features are very rich, and they keep on adding new features. When I have contacted tech support, the response has been fast and usually helpful. I'd recommend it to anyone with average or above tech knowledge.

UPDATE 11.12.09

Just a quick note to say that I did decide to renew last month. The quality has been very consistent, reliable, and strong for me. The only way I see myself switching is if I ultimately succumb to the allure of a triple play deal (I don't have cable TV--just an antenna) or if the service really changes for the worse. I don't see those scenarios happening in the short or longer term, so I signed up for their 18-month renewal deal. The monthly fees don't bother me, as I calculate those into my average monthly cost, and it is still one heck of a value in my book.

UPDATE 07.13.09

Over two years, and ViaTalk keeps working. I've had ZERO problems with outages over the last year--just some minor issues like the VMWI light not going off (which seems fixed now). Call quality has always been very clear. I enjoy the features--particularly Do Not Disturb, Anonymous Call Rejection, Voicemails to e-mail, etc. I was considering the cable company's triple play, but my wife and I decided against it. We don't watch much TV (so our antenna is working just fine), and VT has provided us with good, consistent service. So why rock the boat? My package is up until Dec. 2009, but we will probably renew. Maybe a nice renewal special will come along between now and then! (hint, hint, VT, if you are reading!)

UPDATE 01.02.08

It's been over a year, and I continue to have no problems with ViaTalk. Looks like a lot of folks are, judging from the forum here. But I am happy with over a year of reliable, crystal clear call quality and great features.

UPDATE 09.03.07

VT is great. I've had very few problems since my last update. VT is getting a bad rap from all of the former SR customers who are overloading the system and (perhaps understandably) are very impatient and want things to work as of yesterday. I've been nervous, but happy to report that my service continues to be great in spite of the surge in VT usage.

UPDATE 05.22.07

I just upgraded my "reliability" rating. I continue to have zero problems with this service. Excellent call quality, astounding features, and all-around fantastic value. I'm so happy with my choice.

UPDATE 03.20.07

I have had zero problems since the last update. The service has been very dependable. I've even noticed that fewer people seem to be reporting problems on the VT forum here. Voice quality has been excellent--I'm very happy with the service. I think that I will stop updating this review unless I experience any major problems or changes in service.

UPDATE 02.26.07

Service has been excellent since the last update. Unfortunately, we had a death in the family which necessitated lots of phone calls in and out. VT quality was perfect during this time of hectic and increased phone use. I'm definitely feeling better about the reliability and service.

UPDATE 02.10.07

I've had rock-solid service and call quality since my last update. I've left my setup alone, except for updating the firmware on the Actiontec router. I'm very happy with the service, and am starting to gain more confidence in the reliability.

UPDATE 01.31.07

I feel like things are beginning to "settle down" for my service. I've been tweaking things, and now I am going to leave my settings alone for as long as possible to try to get a better feel for stability over a larger chunk of time with my current setup.

Customer service has been much more responsive and helpful this week. I still think that, overall, VT is a great service. Voice quality since the last update has been excellent.

UPDATE 01.26.07

VT could be experiencing growing pains, as there have been more complaints about customer service in the last week. The problem is that it's really hard to pin down where problems in call quality come from and also hard to figure out how to fix them.

I've had some problems with the service, but nothing that I would describe as major, catastrophic, or unfixable. The service presents a good value. I love getting my voicemail messages on e-mail. But I also realize now that I am constantly concerned about the reliability of my phone service whereas as a POTS customer I never had to question it. I knew that coming into this experience, but living it is different than thinking about it.

Overall, I'm sticking with VT, but am starting to become a little concerned about the quality of the CS. I just want problems clearly communicated as quickly as possible, and transparency regarding where the problems are coming from and what is being done to fix them.

UPDATE 01.11.07

Just had the porting of my number completed. Pros/Cons regarding this process:

PROS: Faxed my paperwork on 01.03.07. Porting process complete on 01.11.07. That's pretty quick. From the reviews I've read, VT generally completes the process much more quickly than the competition.

CONS: VT really needs to improve the knowledgebase and FAQ so that a consumer knows what to expect with this process. From reading the forums, I assumed my number would be inactive for a "few hours." My dial tone on my POTS line was dead when I woke up at 7 a.m. I didn't receive the "porting is complete" e-mail until 5 p.m.
Evidently, the porting team at VT doesn't start working on porting numbers until 1 p.m. EST. Would have been nice to know this upfront.

After receiving the e-mail, my phone didn't work. My cell phone wouldn't dial the 866 support #, leaving e-mail support as my only option. I sent an "urgent" e-mail to support, and they replied with instructed on how to log into my PAP2 and reset some settings. They got back to me in an hour, which is pretty good.

Unfortunately, though, part of the instructions were incorrect. I was able to recognize the error and had the service back up and running by 7 p.m. After the number is ported, you have to go back to the control panel and reset things to the way you had them with the temporary number. Again, would have been nice to have had a "heads up" on this.

Overall, I'm still happy with ViaTalk and still feel the customer service is pretty darn good . They need to develop the knowledgebase and FAQ to better prepare customers for what happens during the porting process.

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

I will update this review, as I have only had full functionality of VT for the last couple of days. I had a few kinks in the installation process, but I am happy to say that VT customer support has been excellent. I am impressed with the company, and I think that they are going about VOIP in the right way. I get the feeling that the company is interested in long-term success as opposed to making a quick buck, which is a good feeling.

Call quality is excellent. You can read about my installation problems with incoming calls in the VT forum on this site.

»No incoming calls--do I need port forwarding?

Overall, I feel like I am going to be a long-term customer. I think, though, that a person switching to VT needs to understand that he/she will have to be patient with the process. So long as a person is willing to work with the company and understanding of "kinks" in the process, I think that VT is an excellent value. The features are fantastic. And I think that the service is just going to get better and better. Time will tell if this is just initial excitement/idealism, and I will update in the coming months after I've had time to really fully test things.

I am going to port my number within the next month after I get my next phone invoice. I will let you know how that goes.

member for 7.7 years, 361 visits, last login: 1 year ago
updated 1 year ago

Comments:

Review by alancats See Profile

  • Location: Washington,District Of Columbia,DC
  • Cost: $11 per month (24 month contract)
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Reliable call-making; Feature-rich Website; Excellent Call-Blocking Features"
Bad "None That I've Encountered"
Overall "Reliable VOIP Service if You Have a Decent ISP Connection"
Web-site:
Ease of Installation:
Call Quality:
Reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:

Updated 3/17/13

I just thought it was time to update my original review to reflect an interstate move, to DC. Viatalk's service is still working well for me, and I heartily recommend it. When I reconnected my Linksys VOIP box after the move, an issue popped up with my wireless router's firewall blocking outgoing calls, but that was quickly resolved by helpful instructions provided from Viatalk's tech support team.

What I love about Viatalk is the wealth of privacy/call-blocking options. As soon as I see that weird con artists from out of state or phone solicitors have made calls when I check my call log on the Viatalk website, I either block that number specifically, or the entire area code. Being able to check voicemails online remains a nice and useful feature. The Viatalk team seems to perptually adding functionality to the service, which is always appreciated. The monthly taxes and fees for DC are a miniscule $3.25 a month, and the $189 charge for 24 months of service makes this the most reasonably priced phone service out there.

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

I've been with Viatalk for over three years, and I'm still very satisfied with their product. I'm one of the refugees from defunct VOIP company Sunrocket, who had to migrate to another VOIP provider when that company died in August, 2007. I switched to ViaTalk in 2007 and have been very happy since.

The best thing about Viatalk service is the feature-rich website, which allows you to listen to voicemail messages, view call logs of incoming and outgoing calls and take advantage of some very cool call-blocking features. For example, you can block all anonymous calls, block specific numbers, block numbers that begin with a certain prefix, block numbers by Caller ID words, or block numbers from an entire area code. Viatalk also just added the ability to block those weird con artist calls featuring non-standard phone numbers often beginning in "0." Very useful and much appreciated by me, as I have been harassed by these calls in the past.

Viatalk is based in upstate New York. The few times I've called customer service, I've managed to get a customer service rep fairly quickly, who A) spoke flawless English; B) was an American citizen (I assume); and C) was actually helpful. When I call my ISP customer service, I get routed to a call center halfway around the world and a barely intelligible rep of dubious helpfulness, so I do like the fact that one can still get customer service based on American soil, a rarity these days. That is not xenophobia speaking; merely my personal preference.

My experience is that, generally speaking, the quality of VOIP service largely depends on the speed of one's internet connection. I have a fairly mediocre download speed from my cable ISP of roughly 4.5 mb/s and .75 mb/s upload, and despite this, call quality has been consistently good. I do notice some slight deterioration in voice quality when I'm downloading a file, but it's not too bad, and I generally avoid downloading if I'm on a long call anyway.

One thing to be aware of -- if you sign up for a long-term contract, Viatalk does assess monthly E-911 and other charges. These are as follows for NY State: E-911 ($1.00); Regulatory Recovery Fee ($1.97); and E911 Cost Recovery Fee (48 cents), for a total of $3.45 monthly. I personally don't have an issue with this, because I'm satisfied with the service and even taking these fees into account, it is still a far better deal than paying for POTS phone service from Verizon or RCN. I am paying for an 18-month contract (not offered any longer) and my total monthly cost comes out to $13.95. Not bad at all in my book. The new package costs are slightly higher, as prices for service have risen across the VOIP industry, but I still think Viatalk is a great deal.

member for 14 years, 65 visits, last login: 37 days ago
updated 1.5 years ago

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Review by dcurrey See Profile

  • Location: Mason,Warren,OH
  • Cost: $13 per month (24 month contract)
  • Install: about 10 days
Good "Very reliable low cost service."
Bad "Have to keep an eye out for renewal specials."
Overall "Blows POTS service out of water."
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01-02-13

Recently was offered the $189 for 2 years deal. Looks like I am good until 2015.

Nothing else new to report.

05-02-11

April 25th was my 5 year point service continues to perform excellently.

12-31-10

Just recently renewed for another 2 years for $189 BOGO sale.

Nothing else really new to report everything just works.

Total monthly cost now shows included taxes.

10-29-09

Service continues to run smoothly.

Viatalk keeps adding new features such as Callerid Name block. The ability to set forwards, DND, simultaneous ring, etc directly from the phone without having to log into the Control Panel. Outgoing number routing. Now have international plans! The list goes on and on!

Went ahead and upped the value for money. I am done complaining about bogus fees since this is now becoming the norm with voip. Its still not right but what can you do?

02-16-09

Not much has changed since last review.

Service for me is still stable. Tech support is responsive if I do have a trouble ticket issued. Usually 2 a year when time changes. Once in awhile something odd may come up.

Billing is still crazy. Prepay is not truly prepay, prices are not locked in for term, you get almost random taxes and fees billed monthly. Taxes varies greatly depending on location, time of day, phase of moon, weather, mood of CEO, who knows what else they take into account.


11-20-07

As far a reliability goes for the past couple months things have been running very smoothly.

They did update the TOS. VT now has a $49.95 early termination fee. This is an improvement over the %50 early termination fee.

They also from time to time offer current users special 1 year deals. Not as good as the Buy One Get One deal for $199+ but not bad for another years service if you want to risk it.

Due to the massive complaints and bad PR about the fees being added to contracts that have already been paid for the company has been crediting the accounts if you complain about it. And only if you complain about it.

10-16-07
It appears the CEO (VTBrendan) has lied to us. He promised after the bogus fees where added to new accounts that all existing contracts will be honored. (Original thread.»[ViaTalk] ViaTalk TOS Change October 4 2006) We find out today that is not so. They are now only waiving the fees for 1 year.

10-6-06
Viatalk recently added extra fees to cover the cost of doing business expenses.

We already had e-911 as a standard feature. Now we need to pay extra per month for it.

Also added the Regulatory Recover Fee. A total BS fee so they can make more profit and still advertise a lower rate.

People on prepay still have to keep a credit card on file so Viatalk can bill you monthly for the additional fees. This also gives them the ability to raise the rates mid term. Since you are locked in for the term you have no options unless you want to pay a 50% early termination fee.

Its an interesting concept don't you think? A prepay plan that is not prepaid nor locked in.

09-15-06

Signed up on April 25, 2006 during one of the $199 buy 1 year get 1 year free deals. Took longer than usual to get the adapter but once it arrived it was plug and play.

Service for the most part has been pretty good. Sound quality is excellent. Some interruptions when they tried to get server fallover working correctly. For the most part we seem past that, I hope.

Viatalk will give you the admin password for the furnished pap2 if you ask. Great for testing different settings, and general troubleshooting. When you get them they way you like simple submit a trouble ticket and they make the changes permanent. At most trouble tickets have only taken a couple hours. (As far as remember anyway.)

Never had to call customer service so no comment on that. The CEO does post in the voip forum that is a big plus.

They seem interested on what customers have to say. Implement new features all the time. Sometimes without adequately testing them it seems.

Website Control Panel. Layout is a little clumsy. Some feature sets should be combined into single area. Custom Callerid, Call Routing, and Whitelist to name a few.

I will continue to update as needed.

member for 10.2 years, 4094 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 1.7 years ago

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Review by thefoxbox See Profile

  • Location: Irving,Dallas,TX
  • Cost: $9 per month
  • Install: about 14 days
Good "It's cheap... $199 for two years (promo rate for 2lines plus $3 a month for federal charges)... Quality is good, when it works."
Bad "Blinking VM light on Uniden phones and SUPER LONG DELAY before connection unless you dial 1"
Overall "It works when it works, and it works well. Tech support is a massive joke."
Web-site:
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My Other Reviews

·Verizon FiOS
·Time Warner Cable
Updated 1/1/2013: The home phone still uses ViaTalk. Their pricing has been competitive every year. The service is more reliable and more feature-packed than when we first signed up. Viatalk truly makes VoIP service ... sorta fun. (OK, so I get a kick out of sending rude telemarketers to the "blacklisted" message...)

Anyway, their pricing is great and we've been able to renew and get 18 to 24 months instead of just 12 for the same price and we've been with them since late 2007. I'd recommend them... Great unlimited service, although their international charges aren't nearly as competitive as they used to be...

UPDATED 2/24/2009: There may be a sudden influx of renewed 'satisfaction' with ViaTalk over the coming days. They just sent out a nice, long e-mail about how they have upgraded their networks, and wow! The response time is sick (as in amazingly good) in relation to response time over the phone (the time it takes for the other person to hear you and vice-versa). It used to lag and I used to be extremely hesitant to use the home phone. Now it's no problem. Also, the remarks about their customer service still holds reasonably true. If your bill is even one day past due (when my mother had her credit card info stolen and had to be issued a replacement that hadn't yet arrived), they cut off our service. The girl answering the phone didn't really give a crap. I guess that's what you get for $12 a month on average.

Main disadvantage: If you don't dial "1" before a number, be prepared to wait for 10-15 seconds before it even starts ringing... This is a severe annoyance since day one. They explained it to me a while back and it's ridiculous that no other company has this horrid delay, but the price is amazing.

Tech support (avg hold time) is supposedly now three minutes. I wouldn't hold my breath... Maybe 5-10. It's certainly a lot shorter as of late 2009 vs. late 2008.

Amazing price, though. Huge abundance of features... way more than the other three providers I've been with, including Vonage. They also have "labs" features similar to Google that you can sign up for and participate in. They also actively take suggestions from current customers.

Their web site has silly pics/names of the staff, but that's probably my biggest complaint.

-----------Previous Review-----------

These guy's tech support is as bad as Verizon's... but they aren't nearly as massive.

I have had this service since 3Q 2007.

The service is all right. I searched and have had at least three other companies, but this one was the best value. You get two phone lines for the price of one. That's pretty amazing in my book, considering that some companies charge the full price for another line even if you are already a customer.

The VM doesn't work right with Uniden phones and they are "aware" of this issue as of April 2008 (when I last spoke to them about it). [I believe this issue has been resolved since Q3 2009]. They were nice enough to give me the password to check the settings in the box that I got when I signed up to see if I could adjust the settings. It didn't really help. It is working better than before. It just seems that at times, the voice mail light will not turn off even after new messages have been deleted. Sometimes, it's delayed.

I'm glad I got this service, and the international rates are pretty low as well. (Update since Q3 2009: The rates to the only country my mom calls internationally, El Salvador, spontaneously doubled, so you may want to make sure you aren't paying twice as much a month for international calls). I wouldn't go back to POTS anyday, and the discount far outweighs the disadvantages of this service.

member for 9.9 years, 53 visits, last login: 1.7 years ago
updated 1.7 years ago

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