what telephone service do you use?

gaylSeptember 21, 2008

We are thinking of changing phone service from our local telephone company to one of the cable or digital services. Can you tell me your experiences with any of these. Are you happy you made the change? Any problems?Thanks.

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kathyg_in_mi

We switched to our cable service for telephone last December. Had AT&T and the long distance $ were too nuch. We did get cell phones for long distance, but reception is spotty where we are. Got the phone service for the first year for $19.99 a month, after that it goes up to $39.99 a month. But since our AT&T bill was usually $60 to $70 a month, I'm happy. No service problems. If power goes out we will lose our phone too, that we know, but could use our cell phones, even if we have to drive a few miles to get good signal.
All in all, I'm happy we switched.
Kathy G in MI

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 4:26PM
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cynic

I can't justify any change. I have dialup internet. I've thought about going with DSL but haven't been able to justify it just yet. My phone bill is cheap. When I make a long distance call, I'm usually on the internet so I use the cell phone, which I can justify the $6/mo or so that it costs. When I use the landline for long distance I use a calling card @ 5¢ per minute and the card lasts me, well, it's the only card I've bought since I dumped the 10-10 service. And I still have about 150 minutes or so left on the phone card. When I'm traveling I either use the phone card or the cell so the phone service wouldn't make any difference. I stay about $35/mo total for landline and cell phone service including internet service. Can't rationalize $100/mo or more for cable services.

My PDA for work used to require an analog line, but now they have the option for digital service but I don't plan on changing.

I could save a little I guess by dropping the cell but I can justify that as a security thing when I travel. Plus it does save me money when I'm out and check if someone's home or whatever rather than waste the gas of driving over to find them gone. And like I said, I can justify +$6/mo for cell service. No way will I pay $60-$100/mo for cell!

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 6:00PM
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western_pa_luann

Verizon for the landline (no long distance service).
Verizon Wireless for the cell.
Skype for international calls, and for long distance when the cell needs charged.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 6:41PM
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jrdwyer

We just ditched one of our two landlines in favor of a free T-Mobile cell (two year contract) at $39.99/month for the cell and $9.99/month for the hot-spot (wifi) service. We live in a valley with almost zero bars for all cell phones carriers in our house. Besides this service, the only option for quality cellular from our home was to spend the time and money to setup antennas and transmitters/receivers.

It works great (in our low bar situation) with land line quality over our broadband 1.5 mb/s Linksys wireless Hotspot router (free after rebhate) and no dropped calls. It also worked with our Ativa wireless router. Other users with moderate to good cell reception at home have reported dropped calls when the phone tries to switch from wifi to cell. Of course, you can also use this cell phone on other unsecured wi-fi networks like libraries, some motels, strip mall stores, or on your neighbor's connection! I don't konw why all cell phone carrier don't offer wifi phones. Maybe wimax will replace this soon?

We don't have it, but for $5.99/month extra you can get a data plan to allow you to use your bluetooth cellphone (Samsung T-339) as a modem for a notebook computer or PDA that have internal bluetooth or an external adapter. Or you can use the simple internet browser on the phone. I believe this is the cheapest data plan out there for those who need email and internet on the road.

I don't talk as much on the cell, and so I have a pre-paid STI mobile (Sprint) phone which is around $5-7/mo. for my low level of usage.

We still have one AT&T landline at home for my business and it runs around $25/month. I use the pre-paid calling cards for long distance and the rate is $.029/min. It assigns the pin number to the line, so all you have to do is speed dial the 800 number. It also shows your home phone number on others' caller ID. COOL!

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 11:40PM
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softballmom

Just ditched my verizon land line which was $60 a month and just kept the verizon cell. Everyone who wants to talk to me texts me all day or they send me an email while I'm at work. I'm able to keep up with my sisters/mother/brothers and father this way. We are planning a cruise for 2010 and everything is being passed to me by email.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2008 at 2:13PM
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joann23456

Vonage for my business phone (same cost and close to the same quality as my regular land line from the phone company), but features are included that would cost more with AT&T). Used to have Vonage for our home lines, too, but recently got rid of the land lines and ported the numbers to our cell phones, which are AT&T.

If you can get a good deal for VoIP phone service, don't hesitate to switch. It's not *quite* as good sound quality, but it's really close, and much less expensive. Plus, they usually include lots of features (some of which you'll actually use) that cost extra through the phone company. And yes, if the cable/DSL goes down, so does the phone, but that rarely (as in 1-2x/year) happens where I live, and you give the VoIP provider a backup number when you sign up, so you don't miss any calls.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2008 at 2:51PM
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jrdwyer

I forgot to mention that our cable provider charges us $30/mo for the broadband internet, which is anywhere from 1-2 mbps in speed. The price is fixed forever and the service reliability is good. The broadband is a standalone service, as we dropped cable TV for lack of use. Free digital airwaves TV makes it easier not to have the cable TV. We took advantage of the government coupons for the converter boxes.

T-Mobile does offer a $10/mo broadband home phone service that is similar to their hot-spot service, except that it uses a different router and you can plug in standard cordless phones and so are not restricted to the cell phone(s) for using the wireless router. You can port phone numbers with either service.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2008 at 10:49AM
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