Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Ooma, Free VOIP Phone Service: Part 4

I've only been using Ooma exclusively for a month now. Not long enough to know if it was worth my money. (I'll break even in six months, taking into account what my phone bill would have been.) In the previous posts I've attempted to explain the process I went through to setup Ooma with my DSL internet. It was not without hassle. I expected this, however because I see Ooma as a do-it-yourself phone service. So, I'm mostly happy with the system because it works.

Call Quality

I'd like to focus on my experiences with call quality today. First, Ooma has a distinct dial tone which is sort of fun but might freak out visitors who pick up your phone. No biggie. The vast majority of the calls I have made with Ooma have been just as good as those that I had made with my land line and they were hands-down better than calls I make with my cell phone.

But, I have had some weird issues. My husband and I have both experienced a strange connection a handful of times. It has only happened when we have dialed the number and connect to voice mail/answering machine. We hear a jumbled, computery, train wreck sound. So, we hang up and dial again and it works better. I don't know what this is about. Like I said, this has only happened when we get connected to voice mail, no other time.

I have not, as of yet, experienced any dropped calls. I'll be sure to post any experience I may have with that in the future right here on this post.

Ooma gives new users a 60 day trial of their Premier service. I'm not going to list all of the features of Ooma Premier, but one of them is anonymous call blocking. This sounds nice, but you'd be surprised how many numbers are anonymous that come from people you know. My husband's work phone, for instance, could not get through. So, I should have changed that feature, but I figured that soon my trial period would be up and I would lose that feature. I'm pretty sure that I should have. However, a couple days after my trial expired, my husband still could not get through. I decided to wait on it before I called costumer service. I had my hubby try to call me this morning and he got through. So, I'm thinking there was a bit of lag on the suspension of my trial period.

In a nutshell: Ooma is not worry-free, not hassle-free, and not effort-free. I am still liking it though. Must be my do-it-yourself leanings that make me like it. I would like to see Ooma improve on customer support and fix some of the other funky issues they seem to have.

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