Thursday, June 11, 2009
I'm talking about VoIP (pronounced 'voy-p') which stands for Voice Over IP. Basically, it uses the internet instead of the telephone system to make and receive telephone calls. Because of that, it can do some very cool things, like have the answer phone email you with the messages as attachments, simultaneously ring multiple phone lines at once, and divert to any phone. If you visit someone's house, connect your box to their internet and you get to make and receive your own calls without costing your hosts anything! Best of all, when you sign up, you get to keep your old telephone number, so someone calls your home number in Kansas City and you answer your cell phone in Glacier National Park!
I've been using Vonage since 2006 and they're great (although there are others). In fact, when we went to stay at a friend's house in Mexico for a couple of months, we plugged in our Vonage box and hey-presto, calls to our San Jose number in California came through to us in Mexico. Calls back to San Jose were local calls! How cool is that? Uber cool.
Finally, it's cheaper than most long distance calling plans. They offer a 500 minute long distance plan for $17.99 / month or unlimited for $24.99 / month. That compares with $32.99 for AT&T's unlimited plan, a saving of almost 25%. You can save even more money by canceling your local calling plan and using your cell phone for local call.
If you're interested, click on the link at the top of this blog and we'll both get two months for free! Happy VoIP'ing!
Even if you don't use it very often, having the ability to make international calls from your cell phone while on the road can be very useful. Perhaps you have a relative overseas, or need to make travel arrangements, either way, you probably think twice before making that call with your cell phone. It's not surprising. AT&T charge 79c per minute for calls placed to Canada (or 59c if you are on their World Traveler Rates). How about if I told you that you could make the same calls, with the same quality of service for 2.4c per minute?
It's not a joke or a con. There's a company that I've been using since 2006 called Tel3 which offers cheap international calls. The beauty is that you can make these calls from your cell phone. Simply dial a toll-free access number, then type in the number you're calling and you get connected, it's that simple! There's no PIN's to enter and you can even set up your own speed-dials for frequently used numbers. When you run out, they simply re-charge your account automatically with your credit card. I love them! Think about it. 5.8c a minute to Mexico, 3.1c a minute to Hawaii, from your cell.