Cost benefit of VoIP

Discussion in 'UK VOIP' started by T., Sep 6, 2005.

  1. T.

    T. Guest

    I hope this post doesn't cause rage. I'm seriously just after a good

    I currently use VoIP. Lots of various service providers here and there
    just to check it out. It's pretty much a toy for me - I don't rely on it
    anywhere - But I still need to get involved with it a bit to understand
    it, just in case, it ever comes up with other people I work with.

    VoIP is a service, and as with most services, there's a cost involved.
    The thing is, I can't find/see VoIP as having any cost benefits. It's
    certainly great from a tech. point-of-view. Example, be anywhere in the
    world with laptop and WiFi hotspot to make/receive calls on a normal UK
    number, or whatever. I guess that example has a cost benefit in itself
    (no international roaming charges or changing numbers all the time with
    customers etc.).

    But, say, for me at my home office in the UK with broadband, I don't
    really save any money. I'm thinking about out going calls here

    E.g. 1899 service gives me cheaper calls out + combine that with the
    many others like that. Routing is easily achieved and hassle-free with a
    £15 dialer box or even Asterix.

    I hope someone knows what I'm getting at. I'm lost. Need a point in the
    right direction.

    I'd really like to know why VoIP then? And more importantly, which
    providers? 'cos clearly all the ones I've tried so far (main/well known
    ones) are either more expensive or, if cheaper, just unreliable.

    Current use:
    Skype with SkypeIn UK landline number for when I'm abroad and
    friends/family want to talk at pre-arranged times. It's cheap for them
    (3pence per call with 1899). Most reliable service. HTTPS proxy support
    is its best feature IMO, considering some networks abroad are quite poor
    for otherwise direct routing to UK/USA.

    Sipgate account and its landline number. Because it was free. Difficult
    to test benefit here as it's so unreliable. After all, it is free though.

    VoIPCheap/Buster - Handy for Telephone Banking, free and all done
    through computer speakers. Works fine, but would be too embarrassing
    with business calls its intermittent unreliability.

    Others, on-off. Either just sign-up for short while (month) or free
    trial online.

    So far only using softphones. Because I can't quite see the cost benefit
    (yet), I haven't got an ATA. I do plan on setting up an [email protected]
    server soon though.

    T., Sep 6, 2005
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  2. T.

    dexter Guest

    By Broadband I presume you mean ADSL down a BT line ! where you to go
    over to TW broadband you could sling your BT line for starters which
    would be a saving of at least 10.40 a month.
    For quality you just couldn't beat Vonage with Voipfone has a second
    choice although the happenings of tonight has but a question mark over
    them regarding reliability in my book .
    Unreliable in many ways ok to play around with but for serious
    reliable telephonic communication any other provider EXCEPT Sipgate .
    dexter, Sep 6, 2005
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  3. T.

    T. Guest

    Yes, ADSL.

    I don't trust VoIP enough to ditch my landline. It's also used for
    incoming fax.

    Say there was an emergency and I need to dial 999? And please don't say
    use mobiles.
    T., Sep 6, 2005
  4. T.

    dexter Guest

    dexter, Sep 6, 2005
  5. T.

    T. Guest

    It'd be danegerous. Think power-cut.
    T., Sep 6, 2005
  6. T.

    dexter Guest

    Once in a blue moon in the UK these days and a poor excuse for
    avoiding VOIP anyway with any of the modern cordless phones
    you need power and a fixed phone is a step backwards in my
    dexter, Sep 7, 2005
  7. T.

    DMac Guest

    It'd be danegerous. Think power-cut.
    you obviously don't live in the countryside.
    DMac, Sep 7, 2005
  8. T.

    AD C Guest

    What if that emergency gave you a power cut?
    This is a flaw with all VOIP, if you have a power cut, you lost your
    AD C, Sep 7, 2005
  9. T.

    AD C Guest

    I just put that, before I read this.
    AD C, Sep 7, 2005
  10. T.

    AD C Guest

    at themoment, but it can happen and from what we have been hearing,
    powercuts could be the norm in the next few years.

    I have got a corded phone connected for emergencies, I don't know anyone
    who have not got a cheap corded phone connected.

    I got cordless phones, the whole house is covered with them, almost
    every room in the house here has a cordless phone, but I would not get
    rid of my old Tandy corded phone.
    AD C, Sep 7, 2005
  11. T.

    AD C Guest

    At the moment, VOIP is not worth bothering with for many people, unless
    you just like the technology and want to muck around with it. BT charges
    most people in this country a line rental, which is needed even if VOIP
    is used, and a lot of land line phone suppliers prices are very good
    now, even beating VOIP suppliers prices.
    I came onto this newsgroup, because I was thinking of getting VOIP and
    wanted to know more about it, but got to the stage where as you realise,
    it is not cost affective.

    If you got other people living with you and they want their own phone,
    then it could be useful or if you want a second line for business.

    I am not going to say what is reliable and what is not, because I don't
    use VOIP, apart from MSN and Skype. At the moment, Skype/MSN does what I
    want, the extra cost of getting VOIP is just not worth it for me.

    I like the techonlogy, but too many things to go wrong.

    A mate of mine is looking at VOIP, but only so he can have another line
    for his fax and maybe have another line for his daughter, so she don't
    run up his bills.
    AD C, Sep 7, 2005
  12. T.

    Ivor Jones Guest

    That can be said of a lot of things. I haven't had a serious problem for
    months. YMMV of course.
    Fax over IP is still rather unreliable as the required protocol isn't
    supported by most (not all) providers, in any case I rarely use my
    standalone machine for incoming faxes now, I have a fax-to-email number
    which delivers incoming faxes as emails. I just use it for sending, which
    doesn't occupy the ordinary landline for long enough to require a
    dedicated line.

    Ivor Jones, Sep 7, 2005
  13. T.

    Ian Guest

    Dont forget, consumer voip is riding on the back of corperate voip.
    where there saving are there and can be Very large.
    Cost is not every thing. But think about the need for more than one line or
    having to seem to a customer that you are based nearby.
    I think you need to workout what you are looking for. If its just cheap
    calls then you are looking in the wrong place. Voip is just another trnsport
    meduim for voice calls.
    Its seems that cost is you prime concern, then that being so you will have
    to stick with the companies you have mentioned and accept that you dont get
    something for nothing in this world.
    Thats a fair point as you are onlylooking to save money.
    Why ?

    There is a problem at the moment where domestic customers for voip have
    listened to the benefits of voip for business use and assumed they are the
    same for them.
    This is not realy so. The savings dont realy scale down well. Remember a
    business will be using voip to call between offices and to remote workers at
    peak times and in large volumes, hence making a descent saving. You sitting
    in your home office making a few calls a day will take a very long time to
    make any savings at all.

    Ian, Sep 7, 2005
  14. T.

    AD C Guest

    I don't think he lives in the real world.
    AD C, Sep 7, 2005
  15. T.

    AD C Guest

    Maybe so, but you now got to rely on equipment that could fail for your
    phone calls. Your ISP could have a problem. My next door neighbour is on
    BT Broadband and he haves so many problems I am surprised he is still
    with them.
    Every sunday at about 2pm, his internet goes off, and the only way to
    get it back is to switch the router off and back on. I thought it may
    have been a router problem, but I have had a look and can't find
    anything. I have also lent him my old router for a week and the same
    thing happens.

    So ISps can have problems and some are worse than others, mine is pretty
    good, but they do have their bad days.

    Then you got the router, that can go wrong, I know electronics are more
    realible than ever now, but that is still another link that can wrong in
    the chain.

    Then Electric, if it goes off, you are in deep doggy poos.
    Is the fax to email number expensive for the sender?
    AD C, Sep 7, 2005
  16. T.

    Ivor Jones Guest

    The free (for the recipient) ones are usually 0870 numbers, mine is. I
    don't normally agree with them but it does drastically cut down on the
    junk faxes..! You can get geo numbers at a price though.

    Ivor Jones, Sep 7, 2005
  17. T.

    dexter Guest

    Oh yes very expencive ( NOT ) 1.99 a month from Voipfone .
    dexter, Sep 7, 2005
  18. T.

    Ivor Jones Guest

    Read the post again. I was talking about fax-to-email.

    Ivor Jones, Sep 7, 2005
  19. T.

    Paul Cupis Guest

    It does appear from the voipfone site as though they also offer
    geographic fax-to-email for 1.99/month - I've haven't looked to see if
    there are any conditions, nor do I have any experience with their product.
    Paul Cupis, Sep 7, 2005
  20. T.

    Ivor Jones Guest

    Fair enough, I wasn't aware of that. However given that I'm stuck with at
    least one landline I might as well use that as a fax line. The voice calls
    are all on Sipgate now, and it's been working fine for months thanks,

    Ivor Jones, Sep 7, 2005
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