[kwlug-disc] VoIP replacement for land line

Khalid Baheyeldin kb at 2bits.com
Mon Nov 4 15:28:29 EST 2013


On Mon, Nov 4, 2013 at 2:37 PM, Raul Suarez <rarsa at yahoo.com> wrote:

> Khalid,
>
> A few couple of questions:
> How do you define "many minutes" local and to the US? are we talking about
> 5,000 minutes or 20,000 minutes per month?
> Are those minutes to many numbers or to a limited number of locations?
>

It is basically like unlimited internet vs a limit (high or low) that you
have to keep track of yourself to stay under.

Same concept here: I am keeping track of how much talking we are doing. For
USA, it is not a whole lot because the per minute charge with my long
distance provider is not that high, but still ...


> Depending on how you want to use it there are many different solutions
> with voip.ms
>
> For Canadian number it is 99 cents per month plus the e911 that i think is
> $1.95. And the amount of features are awesome (e.g. Call forward and DISA,
> call transfer, unlimited extensions, etc) and 1/2 cent per minute almost
> anywhere in Canada (I think the Yukon is 1 cent).
>
> If you have people that you call regularly in the States you could set up
> a virtual number there and have them call you, That's what I do for Mexico.
> My parents don't pay for local calls in Mexico, and I don't pay any extra
> for incoming calls from that line.
>
> If people in your family usually call the same people for those long
> calls, you can set up an ATA at the remote location (about $70) and just
> call extension to extension which is free. That applies for anywhere in the
> world where there is an internet connection to connect the ATA
>
> Alternatively they can set up a SIP client (soft-phone) on the computer or
> on the smartphone and use it as an extension.
>
> To give you an idea of cost: I pay about $13 a month and that includes,
> - my line with e911 (this line does not get much use as everybody at home
> uses cell phones)
> - A virtual phone number in Mexico at a flat $9 per month. Here sometimes
> we rack 4,000 or 5,000 minutes
> - On my cell phone plan I can set up one free number that I can call to as
> much as I want (something like "my five").  I did set up my home phone as
> my free number, I then  up a DISA on my DID. When I call home from my cell
> phone, it asks me for a code, and gives me a tone for me to dial anywhere,
> so pretty much all the calls from the cell phone would cost 1 cent per
> minute which can save a ton on cell charges.
>
> Plus added advantages. I configured it such as, when my parents call my
> Mexican line, They receive a menu "press 1 to call me at home, press 2 to
> call me at my cell". that way they can always reach me
>

I looked into voip.ms and it is too confusing figure out a cost vs. a flat
rate plan. An open ended per usage plan will still be something to keep an
eye on like internet caps.

I am currently testing the Ooma Telo (http://ca.ooma.com/how-ooma-works)
with the Premium plan ($9.99 a month unlimited to USA, second line which
can be a USA number, ...etc., and $3.99 for unlimited calling in Canada).
The USA number was chosen to be local to relatives there that we call
often, so they can call us at no cost to them, or us.

It is working well so far.

For Egypt, the per minute charge is much higher than North America
(cheapest is $0.09 per minute, up to $0.26 per minute. These are discount
carrier rates. Bell used to be $1.18 per minute, not sure what they are
now).

The best solution I found is to buy a MagicJack and put a local number on
it and have unlimited calls to/from where it is installed ($30 a year per
MagicJack). As a bonus, the person(s) you install a MagicJack for can also
call other USA/Canada for free.


> Raul Suarez
>
> Technology consultant
> Software, Hardware and Practices
> _________________
> Twitter: rarsamx
> http://rarsa.blogspot.com/
> An eclectic collection of random thoughts
>
>
>   On Friday, October 25, 2013 12:38:36 AM, unsolicited <
> unsolicited at swiz.ca> wrote:
>  There was a thread some time ago about alarm system and voip, I forget
> whom - was a new move to a new subdivision. Solved eventually through a
> settings change on the ATA, I believe, but it took some sleuthing to
> find. (And ultimately the multiple techs consulted learned something new.)
>
> What may also work for you:
>
> - I am assuming you wish to continue to use your regular land line phone
> sets for all conversations. Especially since you likely have to have
> physical copper to which the security system connects to. (What happens
> beyond the copper connection being transparent.)
>
> An SPA3102 type device will let you connect your land line and register
> with a voip provider - so will let you exercise voip until you're
> confident in it. When you are, disconnect the land line - no other
> changes needed. [Oksana does this, and at last report is very happy with
> it. I believe with unlimitel, before it changed, and before voip.ms was
> discussed on the list as being the best candidate.] It will also let you
> do cost routing - e.g. landline for local, voip for long distance,
> automagically.
>
> - SPA3012 and SPA siblings may be hard to find. I have seen references
> that PAP replacements Linksys came out with are not near the same
> quality. Avoid in favour of other units (which I don't recall off the
> top of my head).
>
> If you're ready to give up on the landline, the SPA little brothers (I
> forget models) [John will know.] will do to provide the voip / telephone
> set connection.
>
> - although you can take these devices with you wherever you go, they
> have enough bulk that you probably don't want to. If you are looking for
> the portability of something like a magicJack instead or as well, you
> may be into a multi-provider situation. (Which not be unacceptable to
> you - especially if you forward one to the other, unless or until you
> actually travel.)
>
> The one gotcha in this is although you can forward many voip providers
> to the one you register (letting you receive calls from any provider),
> the SPA's will normally only let you dial out voip via one provider.
> (You can set special speed dial codes to get around that.)
>
> More current units may let you register with more than 1 voip provider,
> and avoid that.
>
> Regardless, softphones will work both ways with however many providers
> you like - they're able to register more than once.
>
> For provider choosing, you can exercise as many as you like via
> softphones, with no other changes - letting you investigate / gain
> confidence with a provider before actually pulling a trigger. Letting
> you deal with the hardware side separately in the mean time.
>
>
> On 13-10-24 10:25 PM, Khalid Baheyeldin wrote:
> > I am reviving an old thread, since I am in the market for replacing my
> land
> > line.
> >
> > Currently Bell charges ~ $34 a month with no features at all. The only
> > thing that is stopping me is that we have a monitored alarm system that
> > requires a land line. Some people tried to connect the alarm system to
> the
> > pseudo land line coming into the VoIP device, and it worked with some
> > systems. Most reported it does not work though. My current company
> requires
> > something like $600 to upgrade the keypad to add a cellular option
> instead
> > of the land line, and add $10 a month for that.
> >
> > I use a lot of minutes to the USA, and others in the house us a lot of
> > local minutes, so pure voip.ms may not cut it. Even with a DID and
> $4.95 a
> > month (Kitchener Waterloo) for incoming, there is still a $0.01 per
> minute
> > outgoing.
> >
> > MagicJack seems iffy if you transfer your current number to them, so
> don't
> > want to risk that with a company that does not have phone support.
> >
> > Currently considering Ooma. It is a hardware VoiP device that offers
> almost
> > free calls to Canada (almost because you pay $4 a month in taxes and
> > government fees, and you get 911).
> >
> > If you want unlimited US calling, then you do it for $10 a month.
> >
> > And they have a 30 day trial, after which you can return it, or switch
> your
> > current number to it.
> >
> > It is sold at Costco (online only) with a WiFi adapers
> > http://www.costco.ca/.product.576100.html
> >
> > Or at BestBuy/Futureshop retail with a Bluetooth adapter (for those who
> > don't have handsets)
> >
> http://www.bestbuy.ca/en-CA/product/ooma-ooma-telo-voip-internet-phone-system-with-bluetooth-adapter-telo-canadabt/10216459.aspx
> >
> > Any one tried that?
> > Anyone has voip.ms with many family members talking locally and to the
> USA?
> > Anyone has a monitored alarm with a VoiP system or cellular? Which
> company?
> >
> >
> > On Fri, Sep 13, 2013 at 11:27 AM, Colin Mackay<zixiekat at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> >
> >> I currently use voip.ms.  It's not free, but it is pay as you go.
> >> Currently I spend about $25 every three-four months for my 519 number.
> >> They charge $5.95 / month for the phone number and in US/Can it's
> something
> >> like $0.0052 per minute.  (0.52 cents)
> >>
> >> Example:  In April I spent 04h 41m 39s on the phone.  It cost $1.58875
> for
> >> that time.
> >>
> >> I've never found a reliable 'free' solution that doesn't cost some
> amount
> >> of money initially.  For a while, you could pay Fongo $50 for plain old
> SIP
> >> access and use whatever device you wanted, but that changed.  Now it's
> an
> >> ATA you purchase and I can't comment on their reliability.
> >>
> >> I just use a small PC as an asterisk server and a Linksys ATA to let my
> >> old fashioned phones work, but you could just use a free SIP softphone
> to
> >> talk directly to voip.ms...
> >>
> >> --
> > Khalid M. Baheyeldin
> > 2bits.com, Inc.
> > Fast Reliable Drupal
> > Drupal optimization, development, customization and consulting.
> > Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability. --  Edsger W.Dijkstra
> > Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. --  Leonardo da Vinci
> > For every complex problem, there is an answer that is clear, simple, and
> > wrong." -- H.L. Mencken
> >
> >
> >
> >
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-- 
Khalid M. Baheyeldin
2bits.com, Inc.
Fast Reliable Drupal
Drupal optimization, development, customization and consulting.
Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability. --  Edsger W.Dijkstra
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. --   Leonardo da Vinci
For every complex problem, there is an answer that is clear, simple, and
wrong." -- H.L. Mencken
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