Archive for the ‘VoIP’ Category

New mobile provider, Republic Wireless, for $19/mo, unlimited everything

November 8, 2011

Republic Wireless launched today. They’re a MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator) which essentially means they sell time on another provider’s network (in this case, Sprint). The twist is that they use WiFi for their calls and texts whenever possible. You sign up, pay $199 for an LG Optimus and your first month’s service. After that it’s $19/month. No, you can’t bring your own device (BYOD) but they say they’re working on that.


VoIP on the cheap, no computer required

July 16, 2010

NetTALK has announced and is taking pre-orders for their new Duo (see Engadget article). $70 includes the first year of service ($30 after that). It has 2 ports: 1 for an Ethernet cable and 1 for a phone. Hook yourself up with a wireless multi-handset phone and you can keep your Duo in your wiring closet (or garage or computer room or den or wherever) and still have phones all over your house.

NetTALK has forums which is generally a good sign but do your research! I’ve seen lots of these kinds of services quietly disappear. One good source is, and here’s one not too flattering article.

After a week with

March 24, 2010

I’m pleased! I had a few missteps which is understandable for starting up with a new services. Most recently I had a problem with it accepting DTMF tones (used in “press 1 for sales, press 2 for support” as well as for routing conference calls) but that was remedied when I actually READ the account settings and set my VoIP router to use the same DTMF technique as I’d selected in my control panel. I’ve done probably 20 conference calls since the changeover as well as a few outbound calls and all is well. Just so you know.

Yahoo vs. Skype vs. SIP

April 29, 2008

It’s not news (anymore) that Yahoo’s outsoucing their Yahoo Voice service to JaJah. What’s news (to me) is that their dial-out service costs $0.01/minute for calls to the US and just under $30 for a dial-in number on an annual subscription ($2.49/month). Sounds like a good deal, right?
Skype’s pay-as-you-go rate for calls to US numbers is $0.021/minute and $30/year for a dial-in number on an annual subscription.
Yahoo’s USA per-minute rate is less than HALF what Skype charges on a per-minute basis. No-brainer, right? Wrong! Skype offers a monthly rate for unlimited calls to US numbers: $2.95. Yahoo doesn’t offer an unlimited plan … at least not that I could find.
I’m still paying less than that for my VoicePulse Connect service. If Skype opened their service to SIP without the need for translators and bridges like HipSip and Voxeo (see an explanation of how to make this work here), I’d jump.

Wireless VoIP phones

April 28, 2008

No, not 802.11 — apparently those aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. No, I’m talking about DECT wireless VoIP phones.
Currently I’ve got a run-of-the-mill POTS phone plugged in to my Linksys SPA3102. That particular device can accept a PSTN line so I’ve got my landline plugged into it, too, allowing me to take and make VoIP calls and PSTN calls over my analog handset. This setup, while cheap, loses a lot of the advanced functionality afforded by VoIP.
Enter wireless VoIP handsets. Thanks to a few friends over at Twitter (@GarrettSmith and @VoIPSupply), I’ve found a couple that look promising. The snom m3 is my favorite but I’m hoping that Siemens will bring their C470 IP over to the United States soon. I’m looking for more information about the Polycom IP200W but, so far, nothing concrete has materialized.

VoicePulse update — I’m pleased

March 25, 2008

I started with VoicePulse Connect on January 10. As of today, I’ve used 972 minutes (a little over 16 hours). It’s cost me a grand total of $10.64 or a little over a penny per minute. Service and call quality has been excellent and I haven’t had to mess with my router for about 2 months.
If you’re interested in the details or more about how to set it up for yourself, drop me a note. You know how to reach me — tony at this domain.

Some VoIP sites I need to remember to get back to …

February 21, 2008

I’ve been banging around some VoIP sites again and have come across some services/providers that I haven’t really had time to investigate in any detail. Rather than keep the sites to myself pending a more thorough investigation, I thought I’d at least post them with the little bit of information I have. If I can get back to them, I will post more detailed entries but, if I don’t, at least you all will have the benefit of what I’ve found.
Inbound number in an area code that you don’t pick. Upload your contacts, call it from one of 3 numbers you designate and you can call the contact through them. Your contact doesn’t see your RingBranch number. If someone calls your RingBranch number, it’s forwarded to one number you select. 1000 minutes/month. Free right now.
RNK’s Phone Number Bank:
$9.95/month after a 60-day free trial. Transfer your phone number to them and they’ll forward calls to that (or those) numbers to a single phone number.
T-Mobile’s Talk Forever Home Phone:
Wireless router is $50 and the service is $10/month with a $39.99/monthly plan (2 year contract).
I know they’ll disagree but the easiest way to descibe it is to call it, essentially, GrandCentral in a paid form. $9.99/month after a free 30-day trial. Has a website optimized for the iPhone as well as TalkPlus applications for Windows Mobile, Blackberry, Palm and others.
Masque Number:
Sort of line Vumber. $9.95/month for the first number and then an incremental cost for each additional number. Each number comes with its own voicemail.
Free, expiring phone number. Currently “scaling our infrastructure” so not accepting new subscribers.

Another new home VoIP provider:

February 15, 2008 launched back in December. For a $29.95 start-up fee and $16.88/month (annual plan) you get unlimited inbound and outbound domestic calls, your own DID, an ATA and all the standard features you’ve come to expect (voicemail, caller ID, call waiting, etc — see their features page). You can pay monthly and you can opt for a plan that only offers 200 minutes — see their pricing and plans page.

Free Windows-based VoIP PBX from 3CX

February 15, 2008

Something else I forgot to post about is 3CX Phone System – Free Edition. Here’s a review from
It’s amazing what you can find when you start clearing out your Inbox! 🙂

VoicePulse update

January 10, 2008

I fixed MY mistake in my Sipura’s configuration last night and made a couple of calls using VoicePulse Connect. The quality is amazingly good – better than my PSTN line! Some local calls, calls to places within a mile of me, cost $0.019/minute but the rest of them were $0.005/minute. Of course, I can download their complete rate sheet to find out what my cost will be, and when I finally put up a PBX that talks IAX, I’ll query their rates on each call and adjust my provider dynamically, but, for now,
I’m quite pleased!

The experiment continues …