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West Chester, OH

Is this a good application of MagicJack Plus

I have a friend who lives in dormitory style housing. Calls to/from her go through a switchboard type service where we call a specific phone number then an extension. This works fine for her, but the long distance calls are way too expensive on her very limited budget.

She needs a way to place long distance phone calls from her home out through the internet via her computer if possible. The calls would only be outgoing and intrastate. The computer is connected via wireless and she does not have access to the router.

She is not very technically inclined.

I would not want to replace her current local calling or how people contact her. This would only be for calling out long distance.

So, would she use a headset? Or regular phone but switch it from the RJ11 in the wall to something else when placing long distance calls? Would she need a different handset period?

Is there a better or more likely to work option?

Magicjack is a very good solution for unmetered North American Long Distance.

Your friend has multiple options. She could use it from her computer either with the mic and speakers attached to her computer, or she could plug in a cheap separate handset directly into the Magicjack itself. It has an RJ11 jack built into it.

Or if she spends a few more bucks and gets a Magicjack Plus she can plug it into her router and plug in a cheap cordless phone and set it and forget it. She'll not only be able to place free long distance calls but also be able to receive incoming calls as well and select any valid American Area Code and available number as her incoming number. Handy if her long distance friends wish to call her up as a free local call.

I use a MJ+ in much the same way. I use two separate cordless phones, one plugged into my Bell line with minimal service and a second cordless unit plugged into the MJ+ and my router and I chose a local area code with much greater coverage than my landline gets in my city.This means that even "local" long distance callers can call me on my MJ+ free of charge as well as allowing me to place free calls all over the continent.


West Chester, OH
Thank you.

From what I understand, only the PLUS version is sold from them now.

She does not have access to the router so it will be through the computer (USB?).

I live several states away. Can I set it up in Ohio, with an area code that makes sense, and then mail it to her? I've ordered a new laptop and would like to test everything out here if possible so that all she has to do is plug it in.

I've read some horror stories on installation and I don't think there would be anyone who could help. They had a real difficult time just getting her wireless going.

It is a housing complex for senior citizens, so...... (I'm over 50 myself so I'm not knocking them. I am a spring chicken to them though.)

Well as long as you take care of the billing aspect and input a valid credit card number you can set it up from anywhere to look like it's stationed almost anywhere else in the US.

The MJ+ still has a USB connector as well as ethernet so yes your friend can use it from her computer.

However, if she is computer illiterate, the second it plugs into a computer it installs and activates its own software. This can be set up on multiple computers as long as you have the original password you set it up with.

Then again unless she has some familiarity with setting up sound devices on her PC she may end up encountering some difficulty getting it to work with a PC mic and speakers. My advice to her would be to pick up a cheap handset and plug it into the RJ11 jack on the MJ+ and plug the other end into her computer and make her calls that way.

Best case scenario, however, would be that you set it up in Ohio for her and then she uses an ethernet connection directly to her router and a handset plugged into the MJ+. That way she never has to deal with software or hardware setups at all.

If I were trying to set it up remotely for a senior that's the way I would do it. You handle the billing and she just plugs in and uses it.


West Chester, OH

1 edit
She gets the wireless service, but not any physical access to the router itself so I'm assuming that she'll connect via her laptop that I will have with me as well. I'll set up everything here then ship it to her with the configuration already set.

Or, are you saying the connection to the router can be via a wireless connection too (ie. not the physical port on the box)? If this is possible, what is the advantage of connecting it to the router vs the laptop?

Since the purchase includes a year of service, am I still going to need to provide a credit card?

Thanks for your help.

EDIT: I just thought of this. The laptop's ethernet port will be open for use if that helps as the laptop will connect to the LAN via wireless. I just assumed a USB port would be used.

No, if that's her case where she has no physical access to the router, then she'll just have to make do with plugging it into her laptop's USB and plugging a handset into the RJ11. Plugging in a handset will definitely be less hassle for her than trying to set up the laptop's mic and speakers.

But yes, I think they require a valid CC# to set up the account, regardless of whether or not you purchased it without one.


Century, FL
magic jack comes with 1 year of service included, when setting up I was not required to enter any type of payment info. Just plug it in, it might ask you what type of headset you want to use I.E. phone.(assuming your parents have setup number etc).


West Chester, OH
Thanks to all of you for your assistance. It works!


reply to artesian79
She doesn't need to buy anything. Gmail has free long distance calling to anywhere in the US or Canada. Well maybe a mic at a dollar store.