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#663313 - 5th Feb 2012 10:09pm how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline
sarahdavo Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 1st Jan 2011
Posts: 391
Loc: Egremont wallasey
Hi guys due to lack of funds, i have virgin broadband, but no landline, by choice, cus the kids would be foning mobiles, etc. but at times i need a house fone for doctor appointments, and my mother to contact me etc. was wondering as i have a wireless router, is it possible to have some kind of internet fone connection, and how does it work. are the calls free, or do you have to pay for a subscription. does it work out cheeper than a landline.

I have tried to read up on the vonage site, but just came away confused, it goes on about virtual fone numbers you can pay for, dialling codes that you can choose to keep costs down for familly members. im confused. can somebody in easy terms explain how it works, does it cost, what equipment i would need. is it a viable and cheeper alternative to a landline.

thanks sarah laugh

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#663325 - 5th Feb 2012 10:22pm Re: how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline [Re: sarahdavo]
Salmon Online   content

Forum Addict

Registered: 8th Oct 2011
Posts: 1759
Loc: Wallasey
Skype is free of course if you and your mum are au fait with it. Does your doctor have on line appointments as many do now.Would it be worth getting a dead cheap(or free) mobile for emergency use? you can get mobile packages for 10 or so.Somebody on here would have a mobile rusting away somewhere.

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#663332 - 5th Feb 2012 10:28pm Re: how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline [Re: Salmon]
sarahdavo Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 1st Jan 2011
Posts: 391
Loc: Egremont wallasey
im not au fait with skype or vonage hence asking for advice. i have a mobile, but it needs charging a few times a day, so not the most reliable thing in the world lol, was just wondering if an internet fone was any good.

thanks sarah

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#663354 - 5th Feb 2012 10:50pm Re: how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline [Re: sarahdavo]
Snodvan Offline

Forum Addict

Registered: 19th Mar 2008
Posts: 1279
Loc: Wallasey Village
If you have Virgin broadband then the only other kit you need is a headset with a microphone (mine came from B&M!). If you want you can just use a mic and open speakers but honestly it is easier with a headset for calls longer than a minute or so.

All you then need to do is download Skype off the web (it is free). You will need to register with the usual daft user name + a real email address but that is easy.

If the other person you want to call ALSO is registered with skype then in effet you can talk to them for ever - and is totally free.

If the other person is not on skype ie just has a regular LANDLINE then a lot depends on where they are in the world. I WILL PRESUME from what you say they will be in UK.

In that case you BUY a UK subscription so that you can dial their landline number from your computer (you just type in the number and press CALL). That will cost you 4.99 a month inc VAT payable in advance. For that there is effectively no limit on the call time ie there is a "fair use" policy. I have never read the details but it will be some large amount of minutes. If you agree to a 12 month contract for this (paying monthly) then you get a 15% discount.

They do have a PAYG system rather than pay monthly. I am less sure how that works for billing but the cost is 1.6p/ minute inc VAT. I think you just pay a fixed sum (5 min I believe) and top that up whenever the balance is getting low. You just click the button "buy credit" on the skype operation page. May be better if you make very few calls.

If you want to call MOBILES as well as LANDLINES then you can do that as well but it costs more. All the info is on the skype website. Put "skype phone call costs" into Google. Easy site to read and understand.

I use skype a LOT because make many calls to relatives overseas eg Colombia, USA and Brazil. They also have skype registration - and so the calls cost NOTHING. This evening I spent 90 mins talking with my son near Chicago and it was like he was sitting next to me. Cost = 0

If you have a Virgin landline phone you can of course use a code to BLOCK calls to mobiles, premium rate numbers, chatlines, overseas or whatever. If ever you want to make a call to a mobile you can do an "unblock" with a variant of the code - and then put the block back on when you have finished. It works but is a bit messy. We did it for years otherwise with Jnr the phone bills were silly.


Snod
_________________________
5 Precepts of Buddhism seem appropriate. Refrain from taking life. Refrain from taking that which is not given. Refrain from misconduct. Refrain from lying. Refrain from intoxicants which lead to loss of mindfulness

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#663385 - 6th Feb 2012 12:50am Re: how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline [Re: sarahdavo]
TheDr Offline
Forum Master

Registered: 23rd Feb 2010
Posts: 2631
Loc: Wirral
I use the Vonage service for both home AND business, with it diverted to another number if the Internet dies.

Vonage offer a lot of extra services, which is where the virtual numbers come in, basically when you sign up it asks you where you want your number to be, so if you wanted a local number you'd pick 0151, but there's nothing to stop you getting a number from anywhere in the country, just remember that if you make local calls you'd still need to dial 0151 as you would, in effect, be dialling from a (for example) 0161 number.

The basic package with Vonage will cost you 5.99 a month, they give you a little box that you plug into your router and you plug your phone, or wireless base for cordless handsets into that, and basically that's it.

Caller display is free
Call diversion to another landline is free
Withheld number rejection is free (gets rid of a LOT of telephone sales)
Standard landline calls are included in your 5.99 but you will be charged for 0870 and 0845 numbers, but if you type them into www.saynoto0870.co.uk you can usually find a standard number.
Mobile calls are 15ppm daytime, 10ppm evening and 5ppm weekend (currently)

I've been with them for about 8 years, call quality was a bit hit and miss in the beginning, and I soon learnt that no one could hear me if I had four computers hammering the torrent sites when I tried to make a call, but that's got a lot better over the years (although granted I do now have 100MB line).

I've recommended them to a few people, and if you input my username when you join (TheDr-UK), we both get three months free rental, so if you get four people signing a YEAR it costs you nothing smile

If there's anything else about it you want to know just pm, I've been with them so long I even have equipment they don't offer anymore (phone that looks like a mobile with a landline number that works off any wireless network, very useful).




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#663389 - 6th Feb 2012 2:42am Re: how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline [Re: sarahdavo]
ex0__ Offline
Forum Addict

Registered: 25th Apr 2011
Posts: 1337
Loc: 1337
It's 'PHONE'. With a P and an H.
_________________________
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#663489 - 6th Feb 2012 11:55am Re: how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline [Re: sarahdavo]
derekdwc Online   content


Forum Veteran

Registered: 13th Oct 2008
Posts: 5015
Loc: Birkenhead
I'm on vonage and find it ok.
Just remember if your broadband isn't on you won't be able to make or receive calls.
I've not done it but you can make free calls to certain other countries


Edited by derekdwc (6th Feb 2012 11:57am)

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#663495 - 6th Feb 2012 12:14pm Re: how does vonage/skype. work basically no landline [Re: derekdwc]
TheDr Offline
Forum Master

Registered: 23rd Feb 2010
Posts: 2631
Loc: Wirral
Originally Posted By: derekdwc

I've not done it but you can make free calls to certain other countries


The "package" you buy each month gives you the free or reduced rate to other countries.

You can also buy one of the "extra" numbers in any country you want for a couple of quid per month so that friends/family abroad can ring a number which is local to them and you get the call at home.

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