[kwlug-disc] OT: Roger's phone services

John Van Ostrand john at netdirect.ca
Sun Jul 18 21:51:54 EDT 2010

----- Original Message -----
> Yes, VoIP quality is worse than POTS. But better than cell. What
> fraction of calls these days involve a cell phone? On those calls,
> VoIP is not going to be what is limiting the quality.

In business the majority is still seems to be non-cell phones (hand sets, head sets.) At least in my day-to-day I talk more with desk-bound people than mobile people.

Perhaps the future is lower quality calls.

> VoIP availability is "3 nines" instead of "5 nines" that Bell gives.
> If it takes a lightning bolt to kill my DSL line, I think that is
> acceptable.

Consider then that 99.9% availability allows for 8.7 hours of downtime per year. If unplanned, it's unacceptable for business to lose a working day of calls. Factored for a normal working day it's still 3 hours of average down time. In reality 3 nines is likely the promise and hopefully not the actual.
> Very true. And the Rogers home phone system will have to deal with the
> same issues. Unless there is PoRG6 I don't know about.

Interestingly, cable is so weak in my area that after numerous problems they installed an amplifier on my cable line inside my house. It's powered through a low-voltage power adapter run to the amplifier by coax.
> It looks like there is a middle ground where Bell still makes sense
> for business. A larger office is likely to have Atria or similar service
> already so you don't have to make that sale. Bigger than SOHO, you
> pretty much have to sell the VoIP features along with larger pipe.
> Several lines in a hunt group from Bell must cost a few hundred
> dollars a month. Wouldn't that cover most of the cost of an Atria 5mbit link?

Every case is different. Some customers will pay more for features, other want features and price reductions. Some see value in really good Internet service. Some use a lot of LD. Some don't want loss of call quality, others don't care.

I know I said companies with lots of lines can afford to make VoIP quality good, but I recall that IBM is one example that may dispel this. Calling some campuses of IBM one can quickly hear stuttered audio, one sign of VoIP quality issues. And I'm not talking about call centre staff either, customer reps, product reps - these are people with decent compensation packages. Obviously they see cost savings winning over audio quality.

> I heard that Atria had so-called "smart buildings" in the area with
> pre-existing drops for service. At these locations, rates for service
> were considerably lower than typical. Does anyone have info on such a
> thing?

Don't they still charge a provisioning fee to cover the cost of the fibre port and some fraction of the initial install? The main benefit to smart building owners may be a reduced and easily quotable provisioning fee and quick turn-around on set up. When we installed we had to wait for a quote and then wait for the fibre to be run. We actually had a fibre bored under Weber St.

John Van Ostrand 
CTO, co-CEO 
Net Direct Inc. 
564 Weber St. N. Unit 12, Waterloo, ON N2L 5C6 
Ph: 866-883-1172 x5102 
Fx: 519-883-8533 

Linux Solutions / IBM Hardware 

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