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sofakng3

join:2007-08-25
Kingston, PA

[General] Recommendation for VOIP service?

I've purchased an OBi202 and have tested it with Google Voice and it works great, but I'm a little worried because it seems like they are using a "hack" to get it working with Google Voice, but the free price is hard to beat.

Regardless, I'm willing to spend around $10/month if something better exists.

Here is what I want/need:
* US calling only (99% inside same state)
* Currently use around 500 minute/month (mix of outbound/inbound)
* Want voicemail
* Need E911
* Cheap but reliable because we don't make that many calls

I'm comparing the following providers:
* Anveo
* Vitelity
* CallWithUs (cheapest one so far?)
* CallCentric
* Voip.ms

The prices seem to be close between all of them but some are cheaper than others... Can anybody give me any suggestions?


steve1111

join:2009-09-23
New York, NY

Consider Localphone too.


PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
Reviews:
·callwithus
·voip.ms
reply to sofakng3

CallWithUs does not have 911, nor does it port in numbers. It excels at outbound calling.

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

Are you [really] only looking at "cheap" when these providers are all in the same range, and ALL of them are so much less expensive than POTS or even cable company phone service?

My recommendation would be CallCentric, which I use for my business and my family.

As with many of the other providers, you choose outbound plan and inbound plan individually.

Even though you're a lower volume user, if you use at least about 250-300 minutes inbound and about 250-300 minutes outbound, I would actually use their flat-rate plans rather than PAYG plans. This applies EVEN THOUGH you won't "use up" all the minutes. That's a compulsive fallacy, to worry about "using up" all the minutes....

Specifically:
»www.callcentric.com/products/
»www.callcentric.com/support/devi···i/obi202

Outbound plan:
North America 500 plan at $ 6.95
[500 minutes outbound, and this plan INCLUDES the 911 cost so you don't pay that separately].

Inbound plan:
Personal Unlimited plan at $ 5.95
[Unlimited inbound minutes, includes the DID phone number].

TOTAL: $ 12.90 with NO extra fees or taxes (unless you live in New York). Includes free voicemail which you can retrieve from any phone or from the website.

[If your usage was somewhat lower, I would go with PAYG for inbound and/or outbound, but in YOUR case I would not. And if you went PAYG outbound you'd have a separate 911 fee. So I would not go that way....]

Yes, 12.90 is a bit more than 10.00 but consider the ending of "The Sting":

[last lines]
Henry Gondorff: You not gonna stick around for your share?
Johnny Hooker: Nah. I'd only blow it.

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

BTW, you mention "same state" calling. That does not matter with any of the companies you mentioned. In space no one can hear you scream, and in VoIP no one talks about in-state vs. out-of-state....

....except a couple of unusual companies like VoicePulse and BroadVoice.

PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
reply to steve1111

said by steve1111:

Consider Localphone too.

No 911 which he needs.
Expand your moderator at work

sofakng3

join:2007-08-25
Kingston, PA
reply to PX Eliezer7

Re: [General] Recommendation for VOIP service?

Thanks for the recommendations!

Do you have any thoughts about just using Google Voice for completely free instead of CallCentric, etc?


PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
Reviews:
·callwithus
·voip.ms

said by sofakng3:

Do you have any thoughts about just using Google Voice for completely free....

It's a very personal decision.

If it's working well for you, great.

I am sure that if Google changes anything there will be some notice.

But you said you need 911, what are you doing for that?


burris
Premium
join:2000-08-22
Miami, FL
reply to sofakng3

Why not consider VOIPo?

Good, solid reliable service and should fit your want list.


sofakng3

join:2007-08-25
Kingston, PA

I haven't concerned VOIPo, but I will take a look. Thanks!

If I use Google Voice, I'll use one of they other providers (that support E911) as a backup. Supposedly it's really easy with the OBi devices to just enter a backup SIP provider and checkmark "E911" support and it will automatically route calls through that provider for 911.

The other alternative I suppose is to return my OBi202 and buy an OBi110 which supports on PTSN line. I've heard that even with a canceled PTSN line, landline providers MUST support 911 calls so it sounds like I could possibly use that as a "free" 911 backup?


DaveSin

join:2009-07-17
reply to sofakng3

I set up a friend with a OBi110 and GV as her Home phone system over 1-1/2 years ago and she is very happy with the setup. I also setup E911 using Anveo, at $0.80 per month. She also set up CallwithUs for all her international outgoing calls on one of her Gateway accounts. The system offers a number of fairly neat Call Treatment features per Contact (such as call blocking, send to Voicemail, etc. per GV Contact). In cases where CallWithUs is having issues to a specific destination, she can use the Anveo line (SP2) for International calls also. So, she has three provider options for placing outgoing calls if she so chooses. There are thousands of OBi users out there using GV as their primary telephone provider, but ultimately it is your decision which direction to take.


sofakng3

join:2007-08-25
Kingston, PA

That sounds similar to what I'm thinking as well...

...but how is she using three providers with the OBi110? (GV, Anveo, and CallCentric?) I think it only supports 2 providers.


garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
·callwithus

1 recommendation

reply to sofakng3

said by sofakng3:

I've heard that even with a canceled PTSN line, landline providers MUST support 911 calls so it sounds like I could possibly use that as a "free" 911 backup?

Not true in Michigan, when I canceled my POTS line it went dead, no dial tone and completely unresponsive to any dialing input (including 911). Some voltage was kept on the line, that's all.

gbh2o

join:2000-12-18
Longs, SC
Reviews:
·Future Nine Corp..
·callwithus
·VOIPO
reply to sofakng3

I would also strongly suggest you consider adding VOIPo and Future-Nine (F9) to your list for consideration, based on my personal experiences. AxVoice is another one that had good/reasonable service when I had them several years ago.

I believe many might recommend adding Phone Power to your list, but I have no personal experience with them... just years of quiet positive reviews here. PX Eliezer has already waived his flag [ ] for CallCentric which has had generally great reviews for years, but again I have no personal experience with them.

There are many factors at play for the quality of service from a particular provider, over various internet segments and internet service providers. Any of the VoIP providers mentioned may be excellent, or may have a particular problem in your area... I suggest that you try several and pick the one that works best for you.


DaveSin

join:2009-07-17
reply to sofakng3

All the OBi ATAs have 8 Voice Gateway accounts that can be used to set up other providers that allows outgoing calls without registration. This Voice Gateway cannot accept incoming calls, only outgoing!

said by sofakng3:

That sounds similar to what I'm thinking as well...

...but how is she using three providers with the OBi110? (GV, Anveo, and CallCentric?) I think it only supports 2 providers.


PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
Reviews:
·callwithus
·voip.ms
reply to sofakng3

said by sofakng3:

I've heard that even with a canceled PTSN line, landline providers MUST support 911 calls so it sounds like I could possibly use that as a "free" 911 backup?

Absolutely do NOT depend on that.

Politicians in some states have put through such regulations because they sound good (note to casual readers, we are talking here about PSTN 911, not cellular 911 which is a separate issue).

But you CANNOT depend on it.

PSTN companies have enough trouble keeping track of the lines that ARE working, they CANNOT keep track of lines that are DEAD.

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

You can do 911 from CallCentric for a total of 1.50 a month.

1) Order the [Pay Per Call] outbound plan. If you make NO calls then there is NO fee, not even a setup fee.

2) Do NOT order an inbound plan.

3) The system will then have you sign up for 911, at 1.50 initial setup and 1.50 a month.


VexorgTR

join:2012-08-27
Sheffield Lake, OH
kudos:1
Reviews:
·voip.ms
·Callcentric
reply to sofakng3

Here's my two cents.

I have multi-accounts.....

CallCentric is my #1, since the call completion and sound have been the best overall with these guys. (I forgave them for October)

CallWithUs is my backup. Outgoing calls are just fine, but by picking a super super cheap DID, I get some delay on the incoming calls. (it kept me running ok through October).

Future 9 is also in my bag of tricks. The user interface for CallWithUs and F9 is the FreeSwitch interface... it's a bit trickier for N00bs... and even me.

Overall, many VOIP providers tout all their features, but the MAIN feature you want is.....Call Connection, and Call Quality. The other things are just fluff that could go wrong. I would rather do that stuff myself with my own PBX software.

On the whole, I would suggest setting up an account a few places. Spend 2$ each place... and see what you think of the Call Quality. Where Quality/Price/Connection seems best, that's your choice.

Region and ISP can effect how a particular provider works for you.


SCADAGeo

join:2012-11-08
N California
kudos:2
reply to sofakng3

said by sofakng3:

Do you have any thoughts about just using Google Voice for completely free instead of CallCentric, etc?

said by PX Eliezer7:

said by sofakng3:

I've heard that even with a canceled PTSN line, landline providers MUST support 911 calls so it sounds like I could possibly use that as a "free" 911 backup?

Absolutely do NOT depend on that.

Politicians in some states have put through such regulations because they sound good (note to casual readers, we are talking here about PSTN 911, not cellular 911 which is a separate issue).

But you CANNOT depend on it.

PSTN companies have enough trouble keeping track of the lines that ARE working, they CANNOT keep track of lines that are DEAD.

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

You can do 911 from CallCentric for a total of 1.50 a month.

1) Order the [Pay Per Call] outbound plan. If you make NO calls then there is NO fee, not even a setup fee.

2) Do NOT order an inbound plan.

3) The system will then have you sign up for 911, at 1.50 initial setup and 1.50 a month.

Google Voice quality can vary.

If you set up a CallCentric account as suggested by PX Eliezer, besides having 911 service, you will have an alternative to making calls (as well as receiving calls - more on that in a moment) when GV quality is below your acceptable threshold, at total upfront cost of less than $10.00, plus $1.50/mo afterwards.

$1.50 E911 setup
$3.00 E911 cost recover fee (current month and next month to calculate max cost)
$5.00 Minimum prepayment to fund account
-----
$9.50

Now here is the great thing about CallCentric - the 911 cost recovery fee is applied per account, so you can order up to 2 free New York State phone numbers (DIDs) with no additional monthly cost.

The only caveat is : Each Free Phone Number must receive call(s) from the PSTN totaling at least one (1) completed minute of use every three (3) months; or they may be removed from your account without warning

 

said by sofakng3:

Regardless, I'm willing to spend around $10/month if something better exists.

If you set up CallCentric as a back up to GV, you will have 911 service, a backup New York phone number, and a backup outbound route for $1.50/mo (plus $0.0198/min when used)... way under the $10/mo.

sofakng3

join:2007-08-25
Kingston, PA

Yeah, it does make sense...

I'm also tempted to just get a CallCentric "unlimited" incoming plan for $5.95 month. It includes the $1.50 E911 fee plus free incoming CNAM (which GV doesn't). Not bad for $6/month I think, plus I can use my answering machine if I want instead of voicemail, etc.

Outgoing GV for free still isn't a bad deal though... (but I do wish they provided outgoing CNAM)


PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
Reviews:
·callwithus
·voip.ms

said by sofakng3:

Yeah, it does make sense...

I'm also tempted to just get a CallCentric "unlimited" incoming plan for $5.95 month. It includes the $1.50 E911 fee plus free incoming CNAM (which GV doesn't).

The CC [inbound] plans do NOT include the 911 fee, I must tell you.

It's a little confusing, I know.

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

These are the plans that DO include the 911 at no extra cost:

North America 500 (Outbound)
North America 1000 (Outbound)
North America Residential (Outbound)
World Select Residential (Outbound)

sofakng3

join:2007-08-25
Kingston, PA

Ahhh, darn! I must have misread that. I might still take your initial suggestion of the 500 minute outbound plan plus unlimited inbound for around $13/month. I was really hoping for $5/month or $10 for the little calling I make but I might be worth it for the ease-of-use of having one provider, etc.


PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
Reviews:
·callwithus
·voip.ms

1 edit

said by sofakng3:

It might be worth it for the ease-of-use of having one provider, etc.

I agree....

But there are other CallCentric choices too....

Outbound:
North America 500 plan at $ 6.95
[500 minutes outbound, and this plan INCLUDES the 911 cost so you don't pay that separately].

Inbound:
Get a FREE New York phone number (DID) from CallCentric, and then FORWARD your inbound Google Voice calls to that number.

Total cost, $ 6.95 and CallCentric can set your outbound CNAM to be your GoogleVoice number.

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

Outbound:
North America 500 plan at $ 6.95
[500 minutes outbound, and this plan INCLUDES the 911 cost so you don't pay that separately].

Inbound:
Get a CC Dirt-Cheap Number near you in Scranton (say hi to Joe!) at $ 2.95 a month, Unlimited inbound minutes. And you can also forward your inbound GV calls to it, so you have two inbound phone numbers in your area.
»www.callcentric.com/did_lookup.p···_did.y=9

Total cost: $ 9.90

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