With so many efforts by so many people across the United States to try to save money, many people are discovering that one of the easiest ways to save money is by switching their home or business phone service from a standard telephone service provider, to one of the many VoIP phone service providers. VoIP telephone service providers not only provide a phone service that is much less costly, allowing customers to save hundreds, or even thousands of dollars per year, but they also provide a phone service that is extremely easy to use and set up.
Two of the largest VoIP telephone service providers include magicJack and Vonage. Each of these two companies provides their customers with the opportunity to get a reliable, inexpensive home and (in the case of Vonage) business phone service for a fraction of the cost of a traditional landline. For consumers who are interested in which phone service will best meet their needs, we have outlined a few of the primary characteristics of the Vonage telephone services in the following paragraphs.
Much like the features provided by the magicJack Plus 2014, Vonage provides customers with a number of different features that are provided by standard home telephone service providers, as well as many features that are not provided by landline phone service providers. Some of these features include:
- Caller ID
- Call Waiting
- 3-Way Calling
- Call Forwarding
- Anonymous Call Block
- Vonage Visual Voicemail: allows users to get their voicemail as a text, voice, or Email.
- Other features that are only applicable to VoIP phone service providers:
- No need for a computer
- Keep your phone number
- SimulRing: allows Vonage customers to receive phone calls on up to five different phones at the same time (including office, home, or mobile devices).
- Compatible with fax machines (for $9.99 per month)
- Phone call quality comparable to that of landline phone service providers, as well as mobile phone service providers
- Phone service can be used from a mobile device: The Vonage Extensions App, like the magicJack app, is available for free download, allows Vonage customers to use their existing call plan to make and receive calls from their mobile device, using a Wi-Fi, 3G, or 4G connection. This easy-to-use App allows you to import or export your existing contacts, making it one of the most convenient VoIP mobile apps yet.
The Vonage Extensions App is available with a variety of different mobile devices, including iOS devices like iPhone, as well as Android devices, and Blackberry
Make and receive calls during a power or internet outage: Unlike many other Voice Over Internet Protocol telephone service providers, Vonage customers can still make and receive calls even if their internet is out. In order to do this, customers must first set up a Network availability number when they sign up. During a power outage, calls will be forwarded to the mobile device number or landline that has been provided. This is one feature that sets Vonage apart from many other VoIP phone service providers, which will often leave customers unable to make and receive calls during any type of internet outage.
How Vonage Works
Vonage and magicJack provide phone service to their customers in a very similar manner. These companies, as well as other VoIP phone service providers, let users make and receive phone calls by using an existing high-speed internet connection. The Vonage box can connect to the user’s existing internet connection in several ways, including through a high-speed wireless router, DSL, or cable modem. Users of Vonage and magicJack alike will be able to browse the internet as they make phone calls.
Getting the Vonage VoIP phone service started is very easy. First, consumers should sign up for a Vonage calling plan. After that, customers will receive a Vonage Box, Ethernet cable, power cord, and a Quick Start Guide in the mail. Currently, Vonage require a United States billing and shipping address for registering.
The Vonage Box is a VoIP phone adapter that is capable of connecting up to two lines through the user’s pre-existing high-speed cable or DSL internet connection. The small and portable device has been designed to work with cordless, or corded phones, and it comes with a VoIP networking router. This Vonage Box is available with an Instant Rebate for free, otherwise it costs $79.99.
The Vonage Quick Start Guide comes with several easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions, which have been included below:
- Plug the Vonage Box into an existing high-speed internet connection via a wireless router, DSL, or cable modem
- Plug the home phone into the Vonage Box
- Pick up the phone, and begin calling friends and family. Calls can also be received to the same telephone number immediately.
Ease of Use
The only requirement for Vonage, magicJack, and many other VoIP phone services is the availability of a high-speed internet connection, as well as a touch-tone phone. Each of these two VoIP phone service providers make their devices extremely easy to set up, so users can begin making and receiving calls through their internet connection in the matter of just a few minutes.
Although these devices are designed to be extremely easy to set up, Vonage actually provides its customers with professional installers with more difficult installations, such as getting all of the phone jacks in a particular home to work with Vonage.
Vonage vs. magicJack Plus Comparison Chart
*This cost can be reduced if users choose to purchase 5 years of service in advance.
**This varies from the basic plans of $9.99 per month to $39.99 per month.
~The cost of the Vonage Box can be eliminated with a Instant Rebate.
Cost of Vonage Home Phone Service
The cost of Vonage Home Phone service depends on the particular plan being purchased. However, with so many different residential plans to choose from, Vonage likely has a calling plan that will work for just about anyone’s needs. The Residential Phone Plans that Vonage has available are listed in the following paragraphs. Each plan below allows customers to keep their own phone number, or choose a different phone number.
US and Canada 400: $12.99/month (no annual contract)
This is a basic home phone service that provides custoemrs with 400 minutes of outband and long distance calling each month to the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. Each minute beyond 400 cost users just 5 cents. However, calls to other Vonage home phone customers is completely free. Low rates are also provided to landlines and mobile devices to ten other countries.
US and Canada 800: $21.99/month (no annual contract)
This is another basic residential phone service that provides customers with 800 minutes of local and long distance calls to the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. Each minute beyond the allotted 800 costs customers just 3.9 cents. Like the US and Canada 400, calls are still free to other Vonage home phone customers, and rates are low on international calls.
US and Canada Unlimited: $9.99/month (for 6 months, then $24.99/month) with a One Year Contract. $24.99/month without an annual contract
This call plan is one of Vonage’s most inclusive North America call plans. Not only does this particular plan provide customers with unlimited outbound calling to the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico, but they are also provided with low rates on international calls. Like Vonage’s other US and Canada plans, calls are free to other Vonage home phone customers.
Vonage World: $9.99/month (for 6 months, then $26.99/month) with a One Year Contract. $26.99/month without an annual contract
This international call plan allows customers to make unlimited international calls to landlines in 60 countries, and to mobile devices in ten countries. Like Vonage’s other plans, calls are still free to other Vonage home phone customers.
Vonage World Plus: $9.99/month (for 3 months, then $29.99/month) with One Year Contract. $29.99/month without an annual contract
This home phone service allows Vonage customers to make unlimited local and long distance calls across the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico, PLUS an addition 250 minutes of international calling to cell phones in over 40 other countries, as well as landlines and cell phones in another 9 countries. Phone calls to other Vonage residential customers is also free.
Vonage World Mexico Sin Limites: $14.99/month (for 3 months, then $39.99/month) with One Year Agreement. $39.99/month without an annual contract
This residential calling plan allows Vonage customers to make unlimited local and international calls to landlines and mobile devices in the United States, Mexico, Canada, and Puerto Rico, as well as unlimited calling to landlines in over 60 other countries, and to mobile phones in 10 countries and territories. Calls to other Vonage home phone customers is free.
Vonage 3000 to Globe Philippines: $29.99/month with no annual contract
This residential calling plan provides customers with 3000 minutes of calling each month to all Globe numbers in the Philippines, as well as unlimited calling to landlines and mobile devices in the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. Minutes beyond 3000 will cost customers just 11 cents each. Calls to other Vonage home phone customers is also free. This particular plan comes with 24/7 Customer Care (in Filipino, also).
Where to Buy Vonage
The Vonage box is available for purchase at a variety of retail locations, including Best Buy, Fry’s Electronics, BrandsMart USA, and Walmart