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Vonage vs. Competitors in the Home VOIP market

 
 
Joel
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      11-07-2003
I've been test driving Vonage for the past 10 days.

These are my thoughts:

-95% quality uptime (meaning that when I'm on the phone, 95% of the time the
call is landline clear.
-Have to dial out twice to get a line about 25% of the time
-Great value for money if you can afford to have cel-phone like quality at
$25.00/month (all line charges and 500 ld minutes)
-Good user interface/experience for customizing features and getting emailed
voicemails or voicemail notification.
-Strange how often the VoiceMail system needs to be "upgraded"
-A little bothersome that you can't pick from various possible phone
numbers, but just get whatever is assigned to you.

How does this compare to other services people have tried/are using?


 
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Stuart Friedman
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Posts: n/a
 
      11-08-2003
A couple of thoughts:

1. First you can bump up your bandwith on Vonage, check your bandwith
meter;

2. What speed is your ISP. If you are pushing only a 128k upload speed,
you probably don't want to go higher than 50k;

3. Some of your determination is based on the region you are in. For
example, many people love Voice Pulse, but
they don't have a national presence. While they will sign you up anywhere,
you are stuck with East Coast numbers;

4. VoicePulse has the best feature set so far. ATT's upcoming VOIP
service is feature rich and is in free beta.

5. In my opinion it is worth the extra expense to buy a number from the
phone company and port it over to Vonage. If you own the number,
you can vote with your feet more easily.

6. My Vonage connection seems better for me than a mobile. It is better
than my ICH and slightly better than my FWD connection.

Stu


"Joel" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:n5Tqb.90$(E-Mail Removed).. .
> I've been test driving Vonage for the past 10 days.
>
> These are my thoughts:
>
> -95% quality uptime (meaning that when I'm on the phone, 95% of the time

the
> call is landline clear.
> -Have to dial out twice to get a line about 25% of the time
> -Great value for money if you can afford to have cel-phone like quality at
> $25.00/month (all line charges and 500 ld minutes)
> -Good user interface/experience for customizing features and getting

emailed
> voicemails or voicemail notification.
> -Strange how often the VoiceMail system needs to be "upgraded"
> -A little bothersome that you can't pick from various possible phone
> numbers, but just get whatever is assigned to you.
>
> How does this compare to other services people have tried/are using?
>
>



 
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John M (Replace the AT & DOT with U No What)
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      11-16-2003
I've been using Vonage since March. It is great. We use it from Denmark and have
the unlimited package. My wife is Canadian and she talks for hours to her family
there. I have a local nuber in the town in Illinois where I grew up so my folks
can get me on a local call as well. We have used the line for faxing and that
just works...a couple of bad transmissions once, but nothing major. We are
heading to the States (Fl) in a few weeks and will bring the ATA with us. Our
DSL there is (most likely) just 128 up (we have 512 up and 2048 down here in
Denmark) so I am hoping that the 50k setting is good. Otherwise we've used the
90k setting here and the quality is great. Also Vonage has the lowest
International rates to the countries we call often...Caribbean, Italy, England,
a bit to South America and Mexico, Greece, Israel, and a few others.

I have not tried any of the others in the market...P8, VoicePulse, and so on. I
have FWD over a softphone, and I am looking forward to testing that a bit more
later.

All in all, I am very pleased with Vonage.

John

Joel wrote:
> I've been test driving Vonage for the past 10 days.
>
> These are my thoughts:
>
> -95% quality uptime (meaning that when I'm on the phone, 95% of the time the
> call is landline clear.
> -Have to dial out twice to get a line about 25% of the time
> -Great value for money if you can afford to have cel-phone like quality at
> $25.00/month (all line charges and 500 ld minutes)
> -Good user interface/experience for customizing features and getting emailed
> voicemails or voicemail notification.
> -Strange how often the VoiceMail system needs to be "upgraded"
> -A little bothersome that you can't pick from various possible phone
> numbers, but just get whatever is assigned to you.
>
> How does this compare to other services people have tried/are using?
>
>


 
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shido
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      11-16-2003
Has Vonage stopped automagically upgrading their residential customers to
business customers when they push "unlimited" to its limits?

--
Greg Merriweather
The NuFone Network
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)
519-251-8225 x 3000
IM: (E-Mail Removed)


"John M (Replace the AT & DOT with U No What)" <jmurrayATmailDOTdk> wrote in
message news:3fb77bcd$0$29403$(E-Mail Removed) k...
> I've been using Vonage since March. It is great. We use it from Denmark

and have
> the unlimited package. My wife is Canadian and she talks for hours to her

family
> there. I have a local nuber in the town in Illinois where I grew up so my

folks
> can get me on a local call as well. We have used the line for faxing and

that
> just works...a couple of bad transmissions once, but nothing major. We are
> heading to the States (Fl) in a few weeks and will bring the ATA with us.

Our
> DSL there is (most likely) just 128 up (we have 512 up and 2048 down here

in
> Denmark) so I am hoping that the 50k setting is good. Otherwise we've used

the
> 90k setting here and the quality is great. Also Vonage has the lowest
> International rates to the countries we call often...Caribbean, Italy,

England,
> a bit to South America and Mexico, Greece, Israel, and a few others.
>
> I have not tried any of the others in the market...P8, VoicePulse, and so

on. I
> have FWD over a softphone, and I am looking forward to testing that a bit

more
> later.
>
> All in all, I am very pleased with Vonage.
>
> John
>
> Joel wrote:
> > I've been test driving Vonage for the past 10 days.
> >
> > These are my thoughts:
> >
> > -95% quality uptime (meaning that when I'm on the phone, 95% of the time

the
> > call is landline clear.
> > -Have to dial out twice to get a line about 25% of the time
> > -Great value for money if you can afford to have cel-phone like quality

at
> > $25.00/month (all line charges and 500 ld minutes)
> > -Good user interface/experience for customizing features and getting

emailed
> > voicemails or voicemail notification.
> > -Strange how often the VoiceMail system needs to be "upgraded"
> > -A little bothersome that you can't pick from various possible phone
> > numbers, but just get whatever is assigned to you.
> >
> > How does this compare to other services people have tried/are using?
> >
> >

>



 
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John R. Levine
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      11-17-2003
>Has Vonage stopped automagically upgrading their residential customers to
>business customers when they push "unlimited" to its limits?


I saw a note somewhere, probably one of their investor briefings, that
said that when a resi customer is using an unusually large amount of
time, they call him up. If he answers the phone "Fred's House of
Toast", they tell him that they're on to him and now he's a business
customer. If he answers "hello?" they have a chat and usually leave
him alone. They know they have a few resi customers who really are
talking to their friends eight hours a day, and the live with it.


 
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Joel
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      11-24-2003
Stuart,

When you say that if you have a low (128kbps for example) upload speed you
should go for a lower voice quality because it won't break up as much (but
just be more consistantly audible) or because it will affect my uploads?

I hadn't before considered that the system may be set so that it tries to
use the highest quality (90kbps) and if it can't always push through 90kbps
it cuts out rather than just delivering a lower quality but audible
conversation.

Anyone else have any experience?

[Interested in VONAGE: If anyone is signing up for a new account, I'm happy
to provide a referal so that we both get a free month of service. I'll even
answer questions about my experience privately if you like. Just remove
SPAMMENOT from my email address.]

"Stuart Friedman" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:dlYqb.8187$P%(E-Mail Removed) .com...
> A couple of thoughts:
>
> 1. First you can bump up your bandwith on Vonage, check your bandwith
> meter;
>
> 2. What speed is your ISP. If you are pushing only a 128k upload

speed,
> you probably don't want to go higher than 50k;
>
> 3. Some of your determination is based on the region you are in. For
> example, many people love Voice Pulse, but
> they don't have a national presence. While they will sign you up

anywhere,
> you are stuck with East Coast numbers;
>
> 4. VoicePulse has the best feature set so far. ATT's upcoming VOIP
> service is feature rich and is in free beta.
>
> 5. In my opinion it is worth the extra expense to buy a number from the
> phone company and port it over to Vonage. If you own the number,
> you can vote with your feet more easily.
>
> 6. My Vonage connection seems better for me than a mobile. It is

better
> than my ICH and slightly better than my FWD connection.
>
> Stu
>
>
> "Joel" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:n5Tqb.90$(E-Mail Removed).. .
> > I've been test driving Vonage for the past 10 days.
> >
> > These are my thoughts:
> >
> > -95% quality uptime (meaning that when I'm on the phone, 95% of the time

> the
> > call is landline clear.
> > -Have to dial out twice to get a line about 25% of the time
> > -Great value for money if you can afford to have cel-phone like quality

at
> > $25.00/month (all line charges and 500 ld minutes)
> > -Good user interface/experience for customizing features and getting

> emailed
> > voicemails or voicemail notification.
> > -Strange how often the VoiceMail system needs to be "upgraded"
> > -A little bothersome that you can't pick from various possible phone
> > numbers, but just get whatever is assigned to you.
> >
> > How does this compare to other services people have tried/are using?
> >
> >

>
>



 
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Tom
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      12-01-2003
I have been with Vonage for just over 3 months now. No problems and the
sound quality is great.

I have 1.5M down and 128K up on my cable modem. I have not had any troubles
with the outgoing sound quality when I call home on my cell. Usually when I
am on the line I am not surfing the net or just doing some light stuff. No
issues with sound quality. I tried the bandwidth saver and found that the
outgoing voice was not to my liking even at the 50K setting, there was
annoying pauses (silence) and if there was background noise it was broken up
and distracting. Must be that they use a lower sampling freq. or something
at the lower bandwidth and ignore freq. It was worst when the background
noise was higher pitch then the person's voice.

Anyway I don't think you'll have any problems maintaining 90K at 128K up.
My cable provider is smaller and they are conserving bandwidth, but provide
a consistant 1.5/128 bandwidth.
"Joel" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:m5fwb.2494$(E-Mail Removed) t...
> Stuart,
>
> When you say that if you have a low (128kbps for example) upload speed you
> should go for a lower voice quality because it won't break up as much (but
> just be more consistantly audible) or because it will affect my uploads?
>




 
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shido
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      12-03-2003
Sounds like you need a noise cancelling mic if you're using a softphone. Or
a better phone... 7960 or similar. g729 codec calls should be 40k/sec. If
you've got kazaa lit up or doing some serious surfing you may want to look
at "shaping" your traffic. Remember, with voip you are limited by your
upload cap and how long it takes your packets to reach each endpoint. Run a
traceroute from your ip to wherever you are calling ( whatever ip you have
plugged into whatever voip device you are using ).


x < 50 ms = GOOD!

x < 250 ms = 1/2 second delay......... BAD


--
Greg Merriweather
The NuFone Network
(E-Mail Removed)
519-251-8225 x 3000
IM: (E-Mail Removed)
"Tom" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> I have been with Vonage for just over 3 months now. No problems and the
> sound quality is great.
>
> I have 1.5M down and 128K up on my cable modem. I have not had any

troubles
> with the outgoing sound quality when I call home on my cell. Usually when

I
> am on the line I am not surfing the net or just doing some light stuff.

No
> issues with sound quality. I tried the bandwidth saver and found that the
> outgoing voice was not to my liking even at the 50K setting, there was
> annoying pauses (silence) and if there was background noise it was broken

up
> and distracting. Must be that they use a lower sampling freq. or

something
> at the lower bandwidth and ignore freq. It was worst when the background
> noise was higher pitch then the person's voice.
>
> Anyway I don't think you'll have any problems maintaining 90K at 128K up.
> My cable provider is smaller and they are conserving bandwidth, but

provide
> a consistant 1.5/128 bandwidth.
> "Joel" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:m5fwb.2494$(E-Mail Removed) t...
> > Stuart,
> >
> > When you say that if you have a low (128kbps for example) upload speed

you
> > should go for a lower voice quality because it won't break up as much

(but
> > just be more consistantly audible) or because it will affect my uploads?
> >

>
>
>



 
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John
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      12-05-2003
I have been using Vonage for the past 5 months and have been very
satisfied with the service. I went from a bill of $80 - $90 a month
between BellSouth and MCI to $26 a month. The only downside I have
found is when the Broadband connection goes down your phone is dead. -
That has happened twice in last 5 months (BrightHouse in Florida). I
recently bought a cell phone for emergency use only ($57 at Walmart +
$20 for 3 months service - 80 minutes).
I did a lot of research on the various companies that provide this
service before I went with Vonage. I developed a website
(http://www.411-netphone.com)
that outlines the various plans offered by these companies and have
tried to present an unbiased comparison of the features offered.
I am trying to keep this website as up-to-date as possible - please
let me know if I missed anything.
John


"Joel" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message news:<n5Tqb.90$(E-Mail Removed)> ...
> I've been test driving Vonage for the past 10 days.
>
> These are my thoughts:
>
> -95% quality uptime (meaning that when I'm on the phone, 95% of the time the
> call is landline clear.
> -Have to dial out twice to get a line about 25% of the time
> -Great value for money if you can afford to have cel-phone like quality at
> $25.00/month (all line charges and 500 ld minutes)
> -Good user interface/experience for customizing features and getting emailed
> voicemails or voicemail notification.
> -Strange how often the VoiceMail system needs to be "upgraded"
> -A little bothersome that you can't pick from various possible phone
> numbers, but just get whatever is assigned to you.
>
> How does this compare to other services people have tried/are using?

 
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Miguel Cruz
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      12-05-2003
John <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> I did a lot of research on the various companies that provide this
> service before I went with Vonage. I developed a website
> (http://www.411-netphone.com)
> that outlines the various plans offered by these companies and have
> tried to present an unbiased comparison of the features offered.
> I am trying to keep this website as up-to-date as possible - please
> let me know if I missed anything.


I just see a blank white page with "411-NETPHONE Your broadband telephone
information center" and a picture of a phone at the top. Based on that I'd
guess you might have missed at least one or two things.

miguel
--
See the world from your web browser: http://travel.u.nu/
 
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