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Saturday, October 27, 2007

My VONAGE experience summarized

I finally switched from VONAGE, my VOIP phone service provider, to Optimum Voice, a local Long Island company and branch of Cablevision. In the end, I switched because my 2 office VONAGE lines went dead and VONAGE customer service was unable to remedy the problem. I think the lines died because of incompatibility issues with my VPN router, but this is just my own, admittedly ignorant, speculation. Since I use the VPN router daily for billing purposes, and reconfiguring the router's settings would cost me hundreds of dollars, I decided to switch to Optimum Voice.

But please do not misinterpret my impression of VONAGE, which is this. It is an absolutely fabulous system. If I had to do it all again, I would pick VONAGE again, and again, and again. In fact, I kept my third VONAGE line, which I have in my house as another office line.

Here are some of the great features of VONAGE.
  • Cost: cheap
  • Simulring: I found this feature indispensable. As far as I know, only VONAGE has it.
  • Portability: Just re-locate the router
  • Caller ID: many phones have this, but not as good as VONAGE's. Trust me.
  • Call tracking: ALL inbound and outbound calls are logged. Other's services have this as well, but not quite as good as VONAGE.
  • Voice Mail-Email notification: This came in handy once in a while.
  • Network availability: great feature. If your internet goes down, VONAGE automatically forwards to a number of your choosing.
  • Others that I did not need, but are really cool. Go to the site.

Here are the disadvantages:

  • Unreliable: let me add a caveat. It is really only unreliable if the VONAGE routers are in line with other routers and switches, in my experience. My home VONAGE works fine.
  • Technical support: Only by phone, so if you have a major issue, your SOL. For minor issues, their phone support is OK.
  • Dropped calls: I had lots, but I think this had to do with my set-up, and not really with VONAGE per se. My home VONAGE phones does not drop.

That's it. In summary, I liked VONAGE and still do. I can contribute lots of my success to their ingenuity. Over 19 months, I never missed one call. Not one. I would recommend them to any small business.

Thanks for listening,

The IU.